Shows & Panels
- Accelerate and Streamline for Better Customer Service
- Ask the CIO
- The Big Data Dilemma
- Carrying On with Continuity of Operations
- Client Virtualization Solutions
- Data Protection in a Virtual World
- Expert Voices
- Federal Executive Forum
- Federal IT Challenge
- Federal Tech Talk
- Feds in the Cloud
- Health IT: A Policy Change Agent
- Improving Healthcare Outcomes through IT Policy
- IT Innovation in the New Era of Government
- Making Dollars And Sense Out of Data Center Consolidation
- Navigating the Private Cloud
- One Step to the Cloud, Two Steps Toward Innovation
- Path to FDCCI Compliance
- Take Command of Your Mobility Initiative
Shows & Panels
Jack Moore is a web editor and general assignment reporter for Federal News Radio.
In the 25 years since the Federal Employees Retirement System went into effect, much has changed when it comes to federal retirement. Tom Trabucco, the former longtime director of external affairs at the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, and Judy Park, the former legislative director of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE) Association, joined Your Turn with Mike Causey for a look back at the creation of FERS and how it has evolved over the years.
A bipartisan group of senators has written to top Army officials to express concern about delays in the suspension and debarment process that leave the service open to contracting waste and fraud. In a letter to Army Secretary John McHugh and Chief of Staff Raymond Odierno, the senators questioned "significant time lapses" between referrals for suspension and actual debarment of contractors in Afghanistan.
The Supreme Court ruled Monday that federal employees can appeal decisions of the Merit Systems Protection Board stemming from discrimination-related complaints in federal district court. The ruling follows earlier lower court decisions that required employee appeals to go solely through the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The justices' decision applies to federal employees filing "mixed cases" complaints involving both allegations of wrongful termination and job discrimination under the Civil Service Reform Act.
Federal agencies across the government have dipped their toes in the mobile pond. While agencies have implemented the new technology for a variety of reasons, there are a couple of common lessons learned shared by the early adopters. Two federal chief information officers who have overseen their agency's mobile transitions shared best practices and compelling use-cases in a panel discussion as part of Federal News Radio's special series, Gov 3.0: It's Mobile.
Just two years ago, Arlington National Cemetery was plagued by mismarked and unidentified gravesites and incomplete paper records. Now, the Army has at its disposal a massive, GPS-enabled digital database of every gravesite. And what's more the cemetery has made the database available to the public via its website and a mobile application.
The Veterans Affairs Department's mobile projects have centered on improving internal business processes and changing how the agency interacts with the public. The department's "Clinic-in-Hand" program, which will launch early next year, will deploy iPads to family caregivers of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans. And increasingly VA doctors and nurses are eschewing the clipboards and prescription pads in favor of mobile options.
The Senate approved a $631 billion annual defense policy Tuesday that would require the Defense Department to reduce its civilian workforce by 5 percent over the next five years and impose a strict cap on government-funded contractor salaries. With the White House threatening to veto the Senate version its current form, the bill now heads to a House-Senate conference committee where differences between the two chambers' bill will be hammered out.
The Office of Personnel Management received fewer retirement claims in November than in any month since February this year, according to new data from the agency. But this is likely just the calm before the storm, according to OPM projections, which anticipate a wave of retirement claims in January.
After a dull October, funds in the Thrift Savings Plan bounced back in November with all funds posting modest gains for the month. The TSP's performance in November marks a return to a mostly strong year for feds' 401(k)-style retirement-savings plan after a bit of a backslide last month.
The Senate moved forward with a plan to require the Defense Department to reduce its civilian workforce by 5 percent over the next five years, after a measure striking that provision was defeated in a vote Friday. Earlier this week, Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) introduced an amendment to the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, which would lift a mandated 5 percent reduction to DoD's civilian and contractor workforces over five years. But in a 53-41 vote, Cardin's amendment was defeated.
The Homeland Security Department would be required to conduct and pass a full financial audit under a bill unanimously approved by the Senate on Wednesday. The DART Act requires the agency, long characterized by the Government Accountability Office as being at high-risk for waste and abuse, to reach a clean audit opinion by 2013.
The White House is threatening to veto the $631 billion annual Defense bill the Senate is debating this week unless Congress makes changes. The administration took issue with a number of provisions included in the 2013 National Defense Authorization Bill, which Senate leaders hope to vote on by the end of the week.
The Senate unanimously approved a measure requiring the Veterans Affairs Department to work more closely with state agencies to reduce a longstanding and growing backlog of disability claims. The measure, sponsored by Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) was included as an amendment to the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act.
Disabled federal workers with dependents would be among the hardest hit by proposed changes to federal workers' compensation benefits, according to an analysis by the Government Accountability Office. The Labor Department has proposed setting a uniform level of compensation 70 percent of the pre-injury salary regardless of dependents and further reducing benefits to 50 percent when employees reach retirement age. But in its report which simulated those proposed changes, GAO raised concerns about the effects on beneficiaries.
Federal employee satisfaction on nearly every measure dropped this year, according to the 2012 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey. Complaints about federal pay mostly fueled feds' declining morale. But former federal human-capital officials also pointed to the role of senior agency leaders.
As with overall federal-employee satisfaction scores, the Human Capital Assessment and Accountability Framework Index trended downward in 2012. Habitual high-scorers, such as NASA and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, continued to sit atop the list. But the report also singled out the Office of Management and Budget and for its notable improvements.
President Barack Obama has issued new agency standards for protecting classified information from insider threats. In a Presidential Memorandum issued Wednesday, Obama provided the heads of executive branch departments and agencies the new National Insider Threat Policy as well as the minimum standards to be employed by each agency in standing up its own insider-threat programs. Details on the new policy and the standards were not made public.
Employee satisfaction across the federal government is sagging, according to the 2012 Employee Viewpoint Survey released by the Office of Personnel Management Wednesday. While there weren't any drastic drops, scores governmentwide were down in every major measure, including employees' satisfaction with their jobs, supervisors and pay.
Budget constraints are top of mind for agency chief human capital officers. And with good reason. CHCOs say they are feeling the effects of the budget crunch, particularly in recruiting, retaining and training employees, according to a Federal News Radio survey. Eugene Hubbard, head of the National Science Foundation's Office of Information and Resource Management, told Federal News Radio the budget squeeze and shrinking workforces mean agency employees are doing more with less to keep pace with the mission.
Despite spending billions to maintain legacy IT systems, many agencies are failing to properly review whether there is a sound basis for continuing them, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office.