GSA, OMB, DoD, OPM: CBG Round-up, 07.18.2014

Gadi Ben-Yehuda

Three Stories about GSA.

  • How ‘Bout These Apples? The GSA turned a snarky BuzzFeed listicle into an earnest hastag, asking people to share their favorite government structures.
  • Challenges Come of Age. Steve Kelman, writing in FCW, says that government challenges “may be one of the single largest changes in government management in the last decade.” He calls out the work of GSA’s Challenge.Gov for special mention.
  • Social Media Decline to Talk about Accessibility. GSA’s Social Media lead Justin Herman expressed dismay that social media companies declined to send a single representative to a discussion about making their platforms more accessible, FedScoop reports. . “We’re talking about emergency management information that will save lives and there’s empty seats here today,” Herman said. “I think that should really make people upset.”

Dan Chenok

John Kamensky

  • The Path to Personnel Reform. Robert Goldenkoff, with the Government Accountability Office, testified before a House panel on civil service reform, outlining eight attributes of an effective personnel classification system. The challenges described reach back more than 30 years.
  • DoD Strategic Workforce Strategy. GAO released a report assessing Defense’s compliance with statutory reporting requirements regarding the development of a strategic human capital plan. It found: “, DOD has not yet addressed the requirement to assess the appropriate mix of civilian, military, and contractor capabilities in its plan.”
  • Diatribe Against Red Tape. Retired general David Barno, in an op-ed column in the Washington Post, warns against the creep of red tape in a peacetime military. He notes that this “could weaken the Army’s warfighting capabilities and drive talented, combat-experienced young leaders from the force.”
  • Why Government Fails. Tim Clark, Government Executive, opines on recent studies and books examining various management-related failures by the federal government. One, for example, is by Dr. Paul Light, New York University, who catalogs 41 “federal failures” that have occurred since 2001. He also, helpfully, offers suggestions on what might be done to avoid them in the future.
  • Visualizing Employee Satisfaction. NextGov shares an Office of Personnel Management video describing a new dashboard for government executives to help them develop better employee engagement strategies. According to NextGov: “Users can log in at, but the dashboard is not open to the public or most federal employees. Managers can decide whether to grant access to lower levels of their individual organization.”

Michael Keegan

DoD to experience ‘trough’ of readiness as it resets force
The Defense Department’s 2015 overseas contingency operations request is about one-third less than what Congress approved for 2014.

House spending bill calls for deep cuts to IRS budget
The Internal Revenue Service would see its current $11.3 billion budget decline by 13 percent under a bill passed by the HouseWednesday.

GSA to be ‘more forceful’ in real-estate decisions
The General Services Administration needs to take advantage of cost-saving real estate opportunities, according to House members participating in a recent round table discussion.

Schedule 70 cloud listing could shower benefits
Procurement experts are enthusiastic about adding a separate cloud services category to the venerable contracting vehicle.

What needs to be fixed in the FAR?
Steve Kelman spotlights two areas where real obstacles to effective IT contracting may exist — and suggests solutions for each.

DeSalvo: Time for the heavy lifting on health record interoperability
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT is pushing for a road map “specific enough that people will know what they’re supposed to do when.”

What, exactly, does a cloud broker do?
The role cloud brokers play in government IT remains largely undefined, but Microsoft’s Susie Adams says the game is changing quickly.

Squeezing Defense IT, dinging FDIC and arguing for better access to space
News and notes from around the federal IT community.

The Business of Government Radio Show: Dr. Richard Beck

The Business of Government Hour features a conversation about management with a government executive who is changing the way government.

Dr. Richard Beck is the director of the Office of Planning and Performance Management at the U.S. Department of the Interior. In this capacity, he is responsible for the office’s ability to provide leadership, guidance, and consulting services for the Department of the Interior on strategic planning, performance management, and organizational streamlining to improve decision making and effectiveness. Dr. Beck also serves as the Department’s Deputy Performance Improvement Officer.

Broadcast Schedule: The show airs Monday at 11 a.m., and Wednesday at noon, on Federal News Radio 1500AM WFED

If you can’t wait, though, you can listen to (or download) this week’s program and all our previous interviews at and by searching our audio archives.

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