OPM must approve an individual’s entry into the SES, so there will be some external assurances
that such an individual is qualified for employment at the executive level.
All SES candidates must have their qualifications certified by a Qualifications Review Board (QRB) before being appointed as career members of the SES.
However, because such recruitment actions are managed by the agency, opportunities for perceived or actual manipulation of the recruitment process may remain.
U.S. Office of Personnel Management, Guide to Senior Executive Service Qualifications, at 6, available at http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/senior-executive-service/reference-materials/guidetosesquals_2012.pdf
(explaining that the hiring agency chooses the selection method, advertises the position, evaluates each candidate’s qualification, and selects a candidate. The agency then “forwards the candidate’s application” to OPM for consideration by an OPM-administered QRB).