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1:32 am, October 1, 2014

In Depth

Monday - Friday, 4-7 p.m.

In Depth with Francis Rose features daily interviews with top government executives and contractors. Listen live from 4 to 7 p.m. or download his archived interviews below.

Thursday - 07/17/2014, 04:51pm EDT
Tim McManus, Partnership for Public Service

The hunt for a job in the federal government can be confusing from the very start. Logging onto USA Jobs and searching for a job as a "secretary" can land you options ranging from public affairs officer to associate deputy assistant secretary for program planning and budget. Then comes navigating the technical requirements, executive core requirements, and the actual application process itself. Tim McManus is Vice President for Education and Outreach at the Partnership for Public Service. He shared some tips for aspiring feds on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Thursday - 07/17/2014, 04:47pm EDT
Todd Harrison, Senior Fellow, CSBA

The Defense Department's overseas contingency budget might survive the end of military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Wednesday, two of the Pentagon's top civilian and uniformed leaders asked the House Armed Services Committee to keep authorizing an OCO budget even after the U.S. finishes the draw-downs in the region. DoD's latest OCO request came late in the year, and it's less than Congress anticipated. The House set aside $79 billion for OCO funding when it passed DoD's baseline budget for fiscal 2015, but now the Pentagon is only asking for about $59 billion. Todd Harrison is senior fellow for the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. He explained how the budget deliberations on Capitol Hill might unfold on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Thursday - 07/17/2014, 04:33pm EDT
Pamela Walker, Information Technology Alliance for Public Sector

Last week, President Obama signed the annual authorization bill for the U.S. Intelligence Community, making several changes to the way federal agencies and contractors deal with classified information and IT systems. Several of the provisions appear to be a reaction to the security clearance issues raised by the Edward Snowden case and by the Navy Yard shooting. Pamela Walker is senior director for homeland security at the Information Technology Alliance for Public Sector. She's been analyzing the final bill, and joined In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu to talk about some of the provisions.

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Wednesday - 07/16/2014, 05:10pm EDT
Jim Silkenat, National President, American Bar Association

There are a lot of reasons the Department of Veterans Affairs has a huge backlog of disability claims. One is the vast number of new claims VA receives: about a million per year. A second is the sheer complexity of the process and the statutes and case law behind it. VA seems to be acknowledging the complexity of the system in a new partnership it's just formed with the American Bar Association. The new Veterans Claims Assistance Network will offer pro-bono legal services to veterans so that they can put together fully-developed claims. Jim Silkenat is the national president of the American Bar Association. He explained how the program will work on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Wednesday - 07/16/2014, 04:36pm EDT
Susan Hanson, Senior Resident Agent, FBI

Justice is served for three Alabama prison guards and a corrections officer who murdered an inmate. They face five to 35 year prison sentences, and the woman who helped put them behind bars now faces some high praise. Susan Hanson, senior resident agent for the FBI in Dothan, Alabama, is a Service to America medal winner in the Homeland Security and Law Enforcement category. She tells In Depth guest host Jared Serbu how the case started. See a photo gallery of all SAMMIES finalists. Read a Q&A and related story.

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Wednesday - 07/16/2014, 04:27pm EDT
Christopher Zember and Jay Harrison

The Defense Department has some significant blind spots when it comes to its ability to assess what's going on in the global technology landscape -- especially in the commercial and non-defense markets. DoD officials are keenly aware of the problem, and there's a nascent effort underway to help solve it. The new Technology Domain Awareness initiative is a project of DoD's Information Analysis Centers. Christopher Zember is the director of the Information Analysis Centers. And Jay Harrison is the director of the Center for Smart Defense at West Virginia University, which is helping DoD get the TDA effort of the ground. They explained the initial drive behind TDA on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Tuesday - 07/15/2014, 05:13pm EDT
Larry Allen, President, Allen Federal Business Partners

As Congress tries to piece together the big National Defense Authorization Act for 2015, it's also looking back to the version of the bill it passed two years ago and asking what ever happened with some of those provisions. The 2013 version of the NDAA included several provisions dealing with small business that made advocates happy. But several of those legal changes are still awaiting agency regulations to actually implement them. The House Small Business Committee held a hearing on the matter earlier today. Larry Allen was among the witnesses. He's president of Allen Federal Business Partners. He shared his insights on the neglected proposals on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Tuesday - 07/15/2014, 05:05pm EDT
Rachel Canty, Student and Exchange Visitor Program, ICE

Just about every agency in government has suffered from cutbacks in training and travel funding. But at Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Student and Exchange Visitor Program, talking with the stakeholders in the educational institutions they oversee is a core part of the mission, so when conferences got cut back, leaders knew they had to find another way to engage. They've since moved most of their training programs online. Rachel Canty is deputy director for SEVP. She said the agency's more than happy with the results on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Tuesday - 07/15/2014, 05:02pm EDT
Virginia Hill, National President, Young Government Leaders

Seven percent of government workers are under 30. The numbers have been dropping since 2009. The opposite trend is happening on the other end of the age spectrum. The percentage of employees over age 60 is rising. Virginia Hill, national president of Young Government Leaders, is looking for ways to find and groom a new generation of federal leaders. She tells In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu about an upcoming conference for young federal employees.

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Tuesday - 07/15/2014, 04:44pm EDT
Dr. Chris Lamb, National Defense University

Congress is mulling through a stream of feedback from outside groups on how to fix a labyrinth of defense acquisition policies. Chris Lamb is deputy director of the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense University. He recently testified before the House Armed Services Committee to share his ideas. On In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu, Lamb said a source of frustration is a disconnect between the top and bottom of DoD's chain of acquisition authority.

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Tuesday - 07/15/2014, 04:30pm EDT
Betsy Schmid and MJ Mitchell, Aerospace Industries Association

Capitol Hill turns to an array of outside groups for advice. The deadline for comments to the Armed Services committees was last Thursday. One set of recommendations comes from the Aerospace Industries Association. Betsy Schmid is VP of National Security and Acquisition Policy for the AIA. She's also former staff director of Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense. MJ Mitchell is AIA's managing assistant VP for National Security and Acquisition Policy, and former chief financial officer of the F-35 program. The two explained AIA's approach to acquisition reform on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Monday - 07/14/2014, 04:56pm EDT
David Hawkings, Senior Editor, Roll Call

The Senate plans to mark up the 2015 defense appropriations bill on Thursday. That will probably help make it the first appropriations bill to pass the Senate for fiscal 2015. Meanwhile the House will try to pass its seventh appropriations bill. Congress as a whole needs to pass 12 spending bills by September 30th if it wants to avoid another continuing resolution or a full government shutdown. David Hawkings is Senior Editor of Roll Call. He shared Capitol Hill's progress on the bills on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Monday - 07/14/2014, 04:51pm EDT
Brenda Farrell, Government Accountability Office

Over the past decade, Congress has stepped up pressure on the Defense Department to gather data about its civilian workforce, and to use that data to develop a strategic workforce plan. The Pentagon has a plan, but according to the Government Accountability Office, it has some gaps: It leaves out some of the information Congress mandated. DoD's workforce strategy doesn't appear to be tied to either its budget plans or its broader management strategies. Brenda Farrell is director of defense capabilities and management at GAO. She discussed the report on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Monday - 07/14/2014, 04:48pm EDT
John Kamensky, IBM Center for the Business of Government

The Office of Management and Budget starts to see progress on a set of 15 cross-agency goals. The Cross-Agency Priorities, or CAPs, are a mix of policy and management reforms that range from stronger cybersecurity to better customer service. As of this month, OMB now has action plans for each one and tracks agency progress on Performance.gov. Now the results are trickling in. John Kamensky is senior fellow and associate partner for the IBM Center for the Business of Government. He's shared the results from the latest progress reports on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Friday - 07/11/2014, 04:53pm EDT
Tiffany Hixson, Federal Acquisition Service, GSA

As the General Services Administration moves gradually toward a "category management" approach to strategic sourcing, it's taking a "deep dive" into the way federal agencies currently buy professional services and the kind of information they need to buy those services in a smarter way. Tiffany Hixson, the professional services category executive in GSA's Federal Acquisition Service, tells Roger Waldron about the new category management agenda for services on this week's edition of "Off the Shelf." Listen to entire episode of Off the Shelf

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Friday - 07/11/2014, 04:47pm EDT
Tammy Flanagan, National Institute of Transition Planning

Making the call to turn your investment decisions over to a financial planner is a big decision for just about anybody, but there are several important factors that make that decision even more complicated for federal employees. Tammy Flanagan is Senior Benefits Director for the National Institute of Transition Planning. She's writing about some of the elements of that decision making process for soon-to-retire feds, and shared her thoughts on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Friday - 07/11/2014, 04:44pm EDT
Jon Adler, Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association

The House's top overseer over federal law enforcement agencies thinks the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has outlived its usefulness. Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI), the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee says he plans to introduce legislation that would abolish the ATF -- and fold its current responsibilities into other federal agencies, including the FBI and the U.S. Marshals Service. His argument: the ATF has been marred by high-profile blunders and it has missions overlap with other agencies. Jon Adler is national president of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association. He took a different view on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

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Thursday - 07/10/2014, 04:49pm EDT
Jeff Neal, Senior Vice President, ICF International

A lot of people are saying that the relentless wave of retirements is a threat to the health of the federal workforce. But there's a problem on the other end of the age spectrum too -- OPM data shows there's been a sharp drop in the number of federal employees under the age of 30 over the last few years. As of last year, those younger workers made up just 8 percent of the workforce. Jeff Neal is senior vice president of ICF International and former chief human capital officer at the Department of Homeland Security. He explained the numbers behind the issue on In Depth with Francis Rose.

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Thursday - 07/10/2014, 04:18pm EDT
Carolyn Lambeth, Engineer, Navy Combat Direction Systems Activity

The Navy thinks 3D printing can eliminate a wide range of challenges with its supply chain. The service is already testing the idea of using additive manufacturing technologies to build small spare parts aboard ships, as they're needed, rather than having to transport them from supply ships or distant warehouses. And one day, the service thinks the technology could even be able to build a small UAV at the press of a button. Carolyn Lambeth is a mechanical engineer for Combat Direction Systems Activity at Dam Neck, Virginia. She explained the future of 3D printing at the Navy on In Depth with Francis Rose.

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Thursday - 07/10/2014, 04:15pm EDT
Dan Saaty, Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder, Decision Lens

"Big data," "data to decisions," and "data analytics" are all big buzz words in government at the moment as agencies try to harness the power of computing to leverage the information they already collect into better decision making. But in most cases, the data itself isn't worth much unless experienced people combine it with their own judgment. Dan Saaty is the chief technology officer and co-founder of Decision Lens, a Virginia company that helps crunch numbers for organizations ranging from intelligence agencies to NFL franchises. He said on In Depth with Francis Rose if organizations want to use data to help guide their decisions, the first thing they need to do is set priorities.

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