Think of this as an "easy suggestion" box.
I'm fishing for ideas that can be fully realized within the coming year, rather than things that might require much longer time arcs for planning and implementing. I suppose they might be fairly tailored or specific to certain organizations or contexts. But if you have an idea, or a commendable practice you've witnessed, that might be quickly instituted, and provide some organizational benefit, no matter how big or small, list it here.
For example, are there simple practices for de-silo-ing an organization, so that communication between units working on related areas can be improved?
Are there ways to make feedback from clients/end-users more effective?
Are there changes to the way jobs are advertised that can focus the applicants a little better so that HR and hiring managers have less to wade through and applicants have less wait and frustration?
These could be things identified in your employee surveys, or simply long-standing or emerging challenges that might be ameliorated more easily than some think.
And so on...
Mark -- A crazy idea that may only apply to our northern neighbors. Set up a Candaian Govies helping Canadian Citizens web sit where Canadian Government employees can list vacation destinations, dates, contact info and areas of expertise and make it available to Canadian citizens who may need help from their government in an emergency. Since there are more Canadians in Florida on any given day in winter than in the entire province of Quebec, I am sure there are often instances where people suddenly need help from your government. They may spend hours on the phone or web trying to track make the right contact when there is probably a Canadian government offical on vacation within 5-10 miles of their hotel who could cut through the red tape much more quickly and easily.
"Since there are more Canadians in Florida on any given day in winter than in the entire province of Quebec"
Now THAT made me laugh! :-) Never been to Florida myself, but I am told that most of the major Quebec newspapers can be easily found there. And if you saw the pile of snow on my street this morning, you could well understand why!
I used to work for a Florida Congressman and just came back from a trip to Disney World. You might be surprised how many of the coastal condos from Myrtle Beach to Miami are owned by your fellow countryman hiding assets from your tax collectors. Disney employees often joke they get so many Canadians, Brits, Australians and South Africans they could qualify for Commonwealth status. We even used to track a not inconsequential number of Candaians registered to vote in our congressional district. They are all part of the "Snow Bird" population that comes south every winter and returns north in the summer.
Create an U.S. version of FuturICT - http://www.govloop.com/profiles/blogs/the-u-s-needs-a-futurict-prog...
On the topic of de-siloing an organization....
From an information perspective, every organization is always doing 3 things:
1) creating data (people or sensors)
2) storing/securing data
3) consuming data
Most organizations remain silo'ed because they only focus on (1) and (2). But the data an organization has created can be a focal point of collaboration. First, you have to make it searchable and then discoverable. What's the difference? A search provides a list of documents or data objects that match a search. But this sometimes generates a page of results that most people do not wade through. You have to apply then a vocabulary or conceptual overlay to help filter down to what people find. Secondly, once an end user has found some data, they need to be able to share it....immediately from the point where it resides. This is where collaborative tagging, commenting and rating can take place.
This is a data centric perspective on de-siloing an organization. Team building excercises are good ice breakers for social approaches to this problem. Group meetings where leaders share what they've been working on is also useful.
From a local gov standpoint:
1. Keep working to change the "culture"
2. Business Process Improvements
3. Keep innovating in order to improve service delivery to the citizens
I wonder if we can come up with a good definition for culture? We all seem to be a bit tentative on this!
I quite like: "The way we do things around here."
1. Speed up acquisition/procurement. Raise the GSA Pay card from 3K to 5K. The toner alone for the office adds up to the 3K in one fell swoop (at the local mandatory source). It is ridiculas to have to wait 90-120 days to purchase something over the micro threshold.
2. Speed up the ordering of IT and software. I don't need to email 20 people 2 states away and wait 6-8 months before I get the software and lo and behold, the next version comes out. Oh and speed up the permission to buy process, that is what takes the longest.
3. For goodness sakes get rid of NSPS-light. Go back to PARS until something better comes along. I took my rating money and asked for time off, as the amount I received would have eaten me up in taxes. Compare that to the awards the WG receive, the GS' felt cheated.
4. If DoN wants to attract young folks, for goodness sakes, offer a contract for work and student loan pay-off.
Mentors...mentors, mentors. for sure. I offered to be a mentor, and was told because of my current grade, I could not.
Social media is "informative only" where I am. You, as an employee are not allowed to comment during working hours.
Involve and collaborate with WG (wage grade) government employees. Everyone benefits from training. Not everyone works in an office.
1. Citizensourcing - Both citizen ideation and crowdfunding for government project idea inception, prioritization, funding and execution.
2. Online Open Government - Not just the availability of transparency, but the complete revamping of the idea of what happens with "public data," and the ease of access necessary for it to be useful. By default everything should be published online and it should be SEARCHABLE, SORTABLE, and REPORTABLE.
3. Annual Open Data Hackathons - Minimal investment can create phenomenal digital solutions such as mobile apps to report graffitti, bike routing, public transportation information, residential area concern demographics, etc.