Instameats? Telework; Siri in the Army. CBG Round-up, 02.07.2014

Gadi Ben-Yehuda

John Kamensky

  • Problems Stay Same, Don’t Go Away. Charles Clark, Government Executive, writes: “Grant Thornton LLP, in anticipation of the “new management agenda” its authors expect President Obama to announce with his fiscal 2015 budget in early March, published on Wednesday “The State of the Union: A View of the Federal Government’s Management from the Inside.” It reports on perennial agency concerns such as information technology security and management, and the ongoing multi-agency effort to reduce improper payments.” . . . A separate survey, also by Grant Thornton and the American Association of Budget and Program Analysts, of agency budget officers, examines the travails of being a budget officer during the recent sequestration.
  • The Modern Federal Managers. Kelly Lunney, Government Executive, writes about how innovative federal managers are scattered across the government. She highlights several, such as Rich Haley at the FBI and Patricia Pointer, at Treasury. Lunney also points out several characteristics they share as exceptional leaders, such as being more proactive than reactive.
  • Army’s New Spin on Use of Games. Patrick Marshall, Government Computer News, writes that the Army and the Department of Homeland Security have joined to develop a collaborative gaming tool that multiple “players” from different law enforcement jurisdictions can use to practice how they would work across boundaries and with fire and medical personnel o jointly respond to an emergency.
  • Telework: It’s All About Accountability. An article by Kate Lister in Federal Times notes that while 90 percent of federal employees would like to telework, only 8 percent actually do so on a regular basis. Lister says that the key is the ability of managers to hold employees accountable for their work, not their physical presence in the office.

Michael Keegan

New IRS chief says budget crunch, understaffing taking its toll
John Koskinen, sworn in as IRS commissioner in late December, told Congress Wednesday that every corner of the agency is underfunded. As a direct result, the Treasury is collecting fewer dollars than it should.

IGs to propose cyber maturity model to better gauge federal cyber health
The goal is to more accurately evaluate the security of the government’s computer networks and systems. These efforts could bring more consistency to the cyber auditing process and engender more confidence in its results.

Army identifies up to $100 million in fraud in recruiting payments
The Army’s audit arm finds huge accountability holes in a years-long program that recruited 130,000 soldiers. The program most likely violated federal law from the get-go, officials say

DARPA Thinks the Future of Surveillance Looks Like Siri
Kaufman perceives an innovation gap, with the private sector leading in many areas where not long ago, research breakthroughs were mostly the domain of government. One way he’s bridging that gap: The agency’s most recent big data research effort is part of the DARPA Open Catalog, an initiative to open up much more of the software and science research that DARPA sponsors to the public.

The Business of Government Radio Show: Chris Mihm

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

Chris Mihm is the Managing Director for Strategic Issues at the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). He leads GAO’s work on governance and government-wide management reforms to support the transition to a more results-oriented and accountable federal government. Strategic Issues addresses such topics as strategic planning and performance management, budgeting and the Nation’s long-term fiscal outlook, human capital management and civil service reform, intergovernmental issues, federal tax policy and administration, and the census.

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