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Report Number CPEX-214
Brian De Vos and Andrew Ciango

Executive Summary

The 2010 Decennial Census of Population and Housing was the largest mobilization of a civilian workforce conducted by the Federal Government. To complete the 2010 Census, the Census Bureau hired, trained, and paid 857,185 census workers to complete this task.

Although the number of Regional Census Centers and the Puerto Rico Area Office remained the same for the 2010 Census when compared to Census 2000, there were 494 Local Census Offices for the 2010 Census compared to 520 Local Census Offices in Census 2000. The Regional Census Centers opened first and supervised the Local Census Offices. They remained open until all data collection operations in the Local Census Offices finished. During the 2010 Census, the office staff managed data collection operations and handled the daily office administration activities such as: hiring, auditing, and tracking employee hours and productivity.

Field Division headquarters staff trained the managers in the Regional Census Centers. Regional Census Center managers were required to complete four training courses; Regional Census Center Overview Training, Regional Field Management and Regional Technician Training, Regional Census Center Managers’ Interaction and Communication Discussion, and Equal Employment Opportunity Training. Additional Computer Based Training, Job Aids and DVDs were available to managers throughout the 2010 Census. After the completion of the training courses, Regional Census Center managers began to train the Local Census Office managers.

The Local Census Office management staff were required to complete a number of training courses prior to and during the 2010 Census. Local Census Office managers were required to complete three Computer Based Training course prior to attending classroom training. The first management classroom training session was an overview of all the Local Census Office management duties. This training was followed by job specific training, called Operational Lifecycle/Management Role training, an All Manager Lifecycle training and an Equal Employment Opportunity training course. The Assistant Manager for Recruiting, Assistant Manager for Administration and the Assistant Manager for Technology were also required to complete an additional course that was related to their specific job duties. Just-In-Time training courses, which covered details about individual operations, were available to the managers two or three months in advance of the individual operations. Additional Computer Based Training, Job Aids and DVDs were available to managers throughout the 2010 Census.

The Census Bureau initially planned to conduct field operations and employee work attendance and payroll via hand held computers for the 2010 Census Address Canvassing and 2010 Census Nonresponse Followup operations, and paper payroll forms (D-308s) for the remaining 2010 Census operations. The employees work progress and payroll data were sent electronically to the Early Local Census Offices instead of completing paper-based documents during the Address Canvassing operation. However, several factors resulted in a decision not to use the hand held computers after the 2010 Census Address Canvassing operation in mid 2009, negating the need for the electronic payroll forms (E-308). As a result, the 2010 Census Nonresponse Followup and all other 2010 Census operations used paper payroll forms (D-308) along with the paper questionnaires that increased the office workload during 2010 Census activities.

The total cost of the office and administrative programs in the Regional Census Centers was $285.9 million dollars. The cost came slightly under budget with approximately 98 percent of the budget spent. The cost of administrative programs was over budget for fiscal years 2009 and 2010 and this overage was directly related to increased travel and communication expenses. Travel related expenses included Area Managers looking for viable Local Census Office space, Area Managers observing operations, Area Managers conducting and observing training and relocation expenses of headquarters staff temporarily reassigned to the regions. Telecommunications costs were higher than expected due to increases in the use of Blackberrys and cell phones.

The total cost of the office operations and administrative programs in the Local Census Offices was $843.9 million dollars or approximately 86 percent of the amount budgeted. The cost of the office operations was under budget due to lower recruiting costs. Fiscal year 2011 was the only year that went over budget and this was due to the closeout of the Local Census Offices taking longer than expected.

The total cost of the office operations for the Puerto Rico Area Office was significantly under budget with only 50 percent of the budget being spent. The cost of office operations was under budget because there were some difficulties in acquiring office space in fiscal year 2008 and the office closed early in fiscal year 2011. This lead to a reduced number of staffing hours needed for the 2010 Census period.

In summary, the Census Bureau hired, trained, and paid 857,185 temporary employees that worked on the 2010 Decennial Census. Over the span of October 2008 to September 2010, the Census Bureau hired a total of 94,758 office employees that worked in the Early/Local Census Offices. The foundation of this success was management training, field office procedures, and training manuals. The management training, office procedures, and manuals enabled the office administration to effectively hire and manage the temporary workforce to ensure 2010 Census operational requirements were met. The Field Office Administrative and Payroll Programs in the field offices were implemented in accordance with program directives and timelines. No major payroll problems were encountered during the 2010 Census. All employees were paid on-time and all regulatory reporting and recordkeeping requirements were met.

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