May 8, 2008:
The CIA is having a growing problem with
their analysts and spies being recruited away by corporations. One unpleasant,
for government intelligence agencies, development of the last few decades has
been the growing popularity of "competitive intelligence" (corporate
espionage.) It's a really big business,
with most large (over a billion dollars of annual sales) corporations having
separate intelligence operations. Spending on corporate intel work is over $5
billion a year, and is expected to more than double in the next four years.
corporate recruiters have a pretty easy time of it, as they can offer higher
pay, better working conditions and bonuses. The U.S. government is fighting
back, at least on the bonus front. The
big innovation is an old corporate one, "performance-based compensation."
Government employee unions usually fight this sort of thing, because it makes
too many union members look bad. But there is no union at the CIA, and most
other intel agencies. So the Director of National Intelligence is implementing
a number of new personnel practices, in order to make it more difficult for
corporate intelligence operations to recruit government operatives.