Glitches in USAJobs site spark an online firestorm

Users take to Facebook and Twitter to jeer at a relaunch of fed job-hunting site, proving that government isn’t immune to social media backlash.

When the government’s main employment portal relaunched amid a still-sluggish economy this month, it was hoping to enable applications for federal job-seekers, not stir up a firestorm of indignation on Facebook.

But glitches in USAJobs.gov led job applicants to flame its Facebook page with criticism, showing that the government isn’t immune to social media blowback of the sort that has slammed private companies.

The controversy erupted when the Office of Personnel Management reassumed management of its USAJobs portal, which had been outsourced to Monster.com. The 3.0 site was relaunched Oct. 11, to resounding boos from frustrated job hunters.

The site occupies a key role in the economy. The federal government employs 2 million civilians, excluding the U.S. Postal Service, making it the nation’s largest employer. Millions of people use USAJobs to search for federal jobs in many agencies around the country, but the relaunch drew fire for its problems with capacity, performance, and faulty searches.

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