Weekly Roundup: October 24 - 28, 2016

OMB IT Guidance Revealed.  Federal News Radio reports: “The Office of Management and Budget has played it close to the vest when it comes to guidance on IT modernization, but it’s finally showing some of its cards. . . . In an Oct.

Putting Out the Welcome Mat

new law signed into law in March requires the White House and agencies to designate government-wide and agency-level transition teams long before the election.  These teams are to help both the outgoing as well as the incoming administrations. What have been their efforts to date, and what can be expected after the election?


Does Taking the Long View Help?

In 1996, Congress mandated the Defense Department to conduct a “quadrennial defense review” (QDR) of plausible future national security scenarios and to assess the effectiveness of different mixes of resources in addressing these scenarios.  These reviews – looking 15 to 20 years into the future -- are conducted every four years to inform Defense strategic efforts. 

Learning to Share - At Scale!

Yes, the federal government launched a shared payroll services operation in 1973 – the National Finance Center – in the Department of Agriculture.  Initially, it served only Agriculture agencies.  Today, it provides payroll services and more for more than 650,000 federal employees in 170 agencies.

Weekly Roundup: December 5-9, 2016

John Kamensky

Weekly Roundup: December 12-16, 2016

John Kamensky

New Volcker Alliance Report: What Americans Want from Government.  The Volcker Alliance report, by Dr. Paul Light, says: “Americans are equally divided between dismantling and priority setting, suggesting that the choice between the two philosophical groups is linked to life circumstances, disillusionment, and partisanship.” Light lays out five reform proposals that reflect public sentiment after the election.

Does Benchmarking Make a Difference?

Initially, these comparisons were only among the 24 major departments and agencies.  Today, Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey data are available to line managers across 28,000 work units.  The survey results are used to gauge employee engagement, and to fine tune management priorities.  Most career senior executives are held accountable for trends in employee survey results in their organizations. 

Weekly Roundup: December 18 - 31, 2016

68 percent. Government Executive reports: “Sixty-eight percent of the federal government’s top career corps will experience their first presidential transition in January as senior executives, according to data from the Office of Personnel Management.” 

The Threat from Within

Background.  Reform legislation adopted in 2004 in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks that restructured the intelligence community included requirements to standardize and better align the background security clearance process across agencies.  But in the years that followed, the consolidation efforts took time, culminating in a 2008 presidential directive to improve the process.


Senior Fellow
IBM Center for The Business of Government
600 14th Street, NW Second Floor
Washington, DC 20005
United States

Mr. Kamensky is a Senior Fellow with the IBM Center for The Business of Government and an Associate Partner with IBM's Global Business Services.

During 24 years of public service, he had a significant role in helping pioneer the federal government's performance and results orientation. Mr. Kamensky is passionate about helping transform government to be more results-oriented, performance-based, customer-driven, and collaborative in nature.

Prior to joining the IBM Center, he served for eight years as deputy director of Vice President Gore's National Partnership for Reinventing Government. Before that, he worked at the Government Accountability Office where he played a key role in the development and passage of the Government Performance and Results Act.

Since joining the IBM Center, he has co-edited six books and writes and speaks extensively on performance management and government reform.  Current areas of emphasis include transparency, collaboration, and citizen engagement.  He also blogs about management challenges in government.

Mr. Kamensky is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and received a Masters in Public Affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, in Austin, Texas. He can be reached at: john.kamensky@us.ibm.com

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