In Depth Show Blog - May 14, 2013

Tuesday - 5/14/2013, 6:23pm EDT

This is the In Depth show blog. Here you can listen to our interviews, find more information about the guests on the show each day, as well as links to other stories and resources we discuss.

The interviews below will be available Wednesday morning, May 15.

Valerie Melvin
Director, Information Management and Technology Resources Issues
Government Accountability Office

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The retirement backlog is getting better at the Office of Personnel Management, but its system is still based on paper documents. Its efforts to transition to an electronic system haven't gotten very far. Valerie Melvin, director of Information Management and Technology Resources Issues at the Government Accountability Office, joined Francis to discuss the latest GAO report that examined OPM's backlog issue.

James Hasik
Defense Analyst & Powers Fellow
University of Texas at Austin

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The Littoral Combat Ship program is struggling with perceptions that it's not ready for prime time. The program has cybersecurity problems and a Navy vice admiral says the ships won't have enough firepower. Some members of Congress are eyeing the LCS program as a place to save money in tight budget times. Jim Hasik, a defense analyst and Powers Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin, spoke with Francis about what might come next for the LCS.

Izella Dornell
Deputy Chief Information Officer, Commerce Department
Government Chair, ACT-IAC Management of Change 2013

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"Partnership, Change, and Action" is the theme of this year's Management of Change conference being held May 19-21. Izella Dornell is the deputy chief information officer at the Commerce Department and the government chair of the ACT-IAC event. She joined Francis to discuss what attendees can expect this year.

Chris Roth
International Director
Jones Lang LaSalle

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The landscape of Washington, D.C. won't change much in the near future, but the agencies filling that landscape may be making some moves. A Senate committee has approved multiple multimillion-dollar lease prospectuses that could enable agencies including the National Science Foundation, Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Labor Relations Board to move locations. Chris Roth, the international director for Jones Lang LaSalle, joined Francis to discuss these potential moves. Roth is the firm's national project manager for the General Services Administration's National Broker Contract (GSA NBC).

Also on the show:

From Our Reporters:

  • The Defense Department is expanding its focus on the cost of goods and services beyond the "should-cost" concept. The goal is to understand how much military services and agencies are spending on people, technology and processes. It will then use that information to improve decision making and become more efficient. The concept of "should-cost" mainly focuses on the fair and reasonable price of a product or service. Beth McGrath, DoD's deputy chief management officer, tells Federal News Radio's Jason Miller she wants to create a cost culture across DoD. Read more or listen to Jason's interview with McGrath.

  • Agencies are on track to close almost 1,000 data centers by December 2013 through the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative. But hitting the $3 billion savings goal isn't a guarantee. Federal News Radio's Executive Editor Jason Miller spoke to Francis about why OMB is struggling to track data center savings. Listen to the interview and read Jason's report.

  • The Pentagon is cutting the number of days it will furlough its civilian workforce due to sequestration this year. It's also adding some more employees to the list of positions it will exempt from furloughs. Federal News Radio's DoD Reporter Jared Serbu covered the announcement from the Pentagon. Listen to his interview with Francis or read his report.

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