Friday, November 2, 2018
The IBM Center's Weekly Roundup highlights articles and insights that we found interesting for the week ending Nov 2, 2018.

Michael J. Keegan

Supply chain task force looks to keep 'lemons' out of the federal IT ecosystem. At a Nov. 1 Information Security and Privacy Advisory Board meeting, a Homeland Security official detailed the composition and mission of the new group.

Is rotating private-sector talent into government the key to IT workforce shortage?  The Trump administration plans to take a closer look at recruiting entry-level talent and retraining the existing IT workforce in the coming months as part of its strategy to stand up its IT modernization agenda. Federal Chief Information Officer Suzette Kent, speaking Tuesday at Symantec’s Government Symposium in Washington, said her office is “laser focused” on identifying places where the cybersecurity talent gap is most severe.

California CIO Amy Tong’s Advice to New State CIOs. California Chief Information Officer Amy Tong spoke at NASCIO about her priorities in cybersecurity, procurement, cloud adoption and digital services.

Digital Cities 2018: Winners Stretch Far Beyond IT Basics.  This year's winners in the Center for Digital Government’s Digital Cities Survey are finding creative ways to solve government problems with technology, pushing the envelope of what is possible in the public sector.

21st Century Leadership. How can today’s business leaders keep up with the seismic geopolitical and economic shifts in the world? What do these mean for their own leadership narratives? In their newly-released book, The Leadership Lab: Understanding leadership in the 21st century, author Chris Lewis and megatrends analyst Dr. Pippa Malmgren set out to help leaders navigate these changes successfully.

John Kamensky

Hiring Flexibility Expands. Federal News Network reports: “The Office of Personnel Management wants to give civilian agencies a little more flexibility than they originally bargained for in granting direct-hire authority. . . . According to a new proposed rule, which OPM issued Monday, agency heads will soon have the authority to not only determine whether their organizations need direct-hire authority to fill certain IT positions but also grant that authority on their own.

GAO SNAPs Analytics. A new Government Accountability Office report on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program concludes: “States analyze data to try to spot fraudulent use of SNAP, such as when recipients sell benefits for cash or provide false information so they can collect benefits. Five of the states we examined reported using sophisticated data mining techniques to look for unusual spending patterns and flag the cases most likely to involve fraud.We recommended that the federal administrator of SNAP more widely distribute information to states about successful state data analysis strategies.”

General Schedule is Broken. In an op-ed for Government Executive, Howard Risher writes: “We know what’s broken in the civil service system. Leading the list is the General Schedule. We have a solid understanding of the alternatives. At this point the defenders of the system are silent.”

Workforce Not the Problem. Jeff Neal, in an op-ed for Federal News Network writes: “During an interview with Francis Rose on Government Matters, Margaret Weichert, acting director of the Office of Personnel Management and deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget, expressed her belief that the federal workforce is not the source of the government’s problems and clearly identified them as part of the solution.”

Employee Happiness. Government Executive reports: “Happiness among federal employees stagnated in 2018, according to an annual survey of the government’s workforce, and although a number of agencies posted gains in worker satisfaction, several large agencies saw steep declines.”

Reorg Guide. Federal News Radio reports: “The Trump administration proposed a major reorganization of the federal government on June 21 . . . . The reorganization proposal is the latest in a long line of federal government overhaul proposals announced by administrations from both parties. Federal News Radio has narrowed this reorganization down to 13 distinct proposals that federal employees should stay aware of, and which agency, department or mission of government they affect.

Next Week on The Business of Government Hour: Conversations with Peter K. Levine, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Defense Analyses on Auditing the U.S. Department of Defense. Why does U.S. Department of Defense lack of an auditable financial statement? What has DoD done to get to auditability? What challenges are faced in getting audited financial statement and how can DoD do better? Join host Michael Keegan as he explores these questions and more with Peter K. Levine of the Institute for Defense Analyses. That’s next week on The Business of Government Hour.

Broadcast Schedule: The show airs Monday at 11 a.m., and Friday at 1 p.m. on Federal News Network1500AM WFED.

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