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Shows & Panels
Jason Miller covers civilian agencies in the federal government with a focus on technology and acquisition. He is also an executive editor at Federal News Radio. Jason's reports can be heard Monday - Friday on the Federal Drive and In Depth.
The agency issued the Federal Supervisory Training Framework that details three levels of competencies for new or existing managers. The guidance is one of several initiatives OPM put forward over the past few years to improve employee leadership skills.
The government will save money on mass transit for federal employees thanks to this year's SAVE award winner. Frederick Winter's idea to switch eligible feds from a regular transit fare to a reduced senior fare will lower the cost of those employees' travel by 50 percent.
The General Services Administration issued two requests for information earlier this month to redevelop the FBI headquarters building and the area of Washington known as Federal Triangle South. Acting Administrator Dan Tangherlini said he's willing to entertain any and all ideas for saving the government money, making the buildings more efficient and helping to transform the neighborhoods.
Bob Brese, the agency's CIO, said cloud service and security operations center will help make the move to smartphones and tablet computers easier.
December 20, 2012 (Encore presentation January 31, 2013)
The Federal Acquisition Regulations Council's proposal would implement part of a July 2012 memo from the Office of Management and Budget. The memo directed agencies to take specific steps to ensure accelerated payments to small businesses.
The White House typically gives agencies both funding and policy updates for the upcoming budget request by Thanksgiving. This year OMB decided to hold off on passback guidance because of the current fiscal negotiations with Congress. Several senior agency officials said this lag will compress the timeline to respond to the information and require them to prepare for something that may never happen.
The blanket purchase agreement lists 15 tools and 11 service areas that DHS wants vendors to provide to improve agency cybersecurity.
Director John Berry said the agency's Innovation Lab is helping to take a different, more rapid approach to developing the proposed rule to implement the new program. Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) also is suggesting the creation of a "leave bank" for workers who leave federal service but plan to return. Berry said that's an innovative idea OPM may look at.
Federal News Radio hosted an online chat with Charlie Armstrong, assistant commissioner and chief information officer at Customs and Border Protection. If you missed it live, view an archived version of the chat here.
Preliminary results from a Grant Thornton survey of contractors show profits, revenues and overall participation in the government market is down. The pressure from the administration's steps to reign in high risk contracts and reduce spending is having an impact on most contractors. The Navy, for example, is trying to be more disciplined in how it buys goods and services.
The administration updated Performance.gov with a variety of data to highlight progress against each agency's goals and the cross-agency goals. OMB's Shelley Metzenbaum said the depth of information now on the site puts pressure on agencies to meet or surpass their goals. Interior and Education provide examples of how the discipline that the high-priority goals demanded has positively impacted their agency.
NASA, the Surface Transportation Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation share a common trait that led them to the top ranking for their size class in the Partnership for Public Service's seventh annual Best Places to Work survey. Transportation, OMB and the National Credit Union Administration earn the most improved status by implementing the best practices of the leading agencies.
Several departments are seeing the benefits from governmentwide collaboration. The interagency National Intellectual Property Coordination Center used its relationships to get the word out more quickly about counterfeit air bags that potentially could explode on impact. HR University absorbed millions of dollars in performance management training courses from an agency who on the CHCO Council.
The agency developed a playbook to help officials keep their processes and procedures unpredictable. Deputy Administrator John Halinski said TSA is using a risk-management approach to protecting transportation systems. GAO said DHS as a whole is doing a better job using risk to make decisions.
The Public Interest Declassification Board submitted 14 recommendations to President Barack Obama at the end of November. The suggestions cover everything from moving out of the three-tiered classification system to a two-tiered process to strengthening the National Archives and Records Administration's National Declassification Center to giving federal employees "safe harbor" protection if they adhere to a rigorous risk management process in how they perform their classification duties.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission needed to find savings after its IT budget received a 15 percent reduction in 2012. Kim Hancher, the EEOC CIO, decided to reduce spending on mobile devices and instituted a BYOD policy to cut spending by almost 50 percent.
December 6, 2012
A new memo from acting OMB Director Jeff Zients to agency leaders codifies an interagency council to oversee the promotion and implementation of bulk buying. Each agency also must name a senior official to oversee their efforts.
Sens. Mark Warner and Bob Corker and Rep. Chris Van Hollen all believe there is at better than a 50 percent chance Congress and the White House will agree on a budget reduction plan before Jan. 1. But federal pay and benefits, and contract spending remain on the table to be part of the cuts.
The two agencies met this week to figure out how best to implement the recommendations in a white paper from ACT-IAC. The approach detailed in the document follows closely the methodology used to develop the NIEM and FICAM standards.
The agency cites its desire to streamline services as the reason to phase out the site. But industry experts say use of apps.gov has been minimal and there was no clear market for the portal. OMB launched the site in September 2009.