Professional Development Program (PDP)

Picture yourself as an integral part of GAO's mission to support Congress in meeting its constitutional responsibilities and to improve the performance and accountability of the federal government. The GAO Professional Development Program (PDP) will help you contribute your knowledge, skills, and abilities to our mission as you embark on a rewarding public service career as a newly hired entry-level staff member.

How the Professional Development Program Works

In your first 2 years with GAO, your PDP experience includes a combination of on-the-job and classroom training, regular feedback and coaching, and exposure to different projects and management styles. An advisor periodically meets with you to provide guidance and assistance to help you adjust to the organization and GAO's work. Your advisor will help you create an Individual Development Plan (IDP) that identifies your professional goals, outlines your preferred assignments, and sets time frames for attending classroom training. Advisors also talk with managers and supervisors to ensure that you will receive appropriate feedback, coaching, and on-the-job-training.

In addition, the PDP provides the opportunity for enriching activities, including orientation sessions, a speakers program,"shadowing" of senior staff, congressional hearings, and mentoring. Further, while in the program you are eligible to receive salary increases based on performance every 6 months.

How the Professional Development Program Makes Project Assignments

Projects assignments are based on a combination of GAO's needs and your background and interests. The PDP will place you in various project assignments after discussions with you and with GAO team representatives to ensure your exposure to different issues and managers during your first 2 years.

You will either

  1. be assigned to one team to work on different projects within that team's area of specialization or
  2. rotate among several teams to work on projects in different subject areas.

The selected staffing approach depends on your education, experience, and interests, and is decided before you are offered a position at GAO.