Friday, June 7, 2013
Articles from across the Web that we found interesting, the week of June 03, 2013

Dan Chenok


John Kamensky

  • Comparison Shopping Comes to Federal Shared Services.  The Obama Administration’s Open Government policies are finally taking an inward look.  Jason Miller, Federal News Radio, reports that “Agencies soon will be able to compare specific performance measures of the federal financial management shared service providers.”  OMB has directed the four providers of financial services to publish their rates and performance levels for various financial services so agencies can comparison shop.
  • OMB Releases First-Ever Program InventoryGovernment Executive reports that OMB released a statutorily-required list of programs in federal agencies, on time.  This inventory is the first phase of detailing program operations across the government.  This year’s inventory covers the 24 major agencies and totals about 1,600 programs. According to OMB, more details will be provided in next year’s inventory.
  • DOD’s 4th Estate Grows.  Headquarters and central support operations grew by 15 percent in the Defense Department between 2010 and 2012, despite a directive to freeze them by previous secretary Bob Gates, reports Federal Times.   In parallel to the Federal Times report, Government Executive reports that a bipartisan coalition of think tanks released a letter calling for a “rightsizing” of Defense civilian and contractor workforces.
  • GAO Assesses OMB’s Website. is a website devoted to tracking the performance of government goals, and inventorying its programs. The site is updated at least quarterly with agency progress reports (the latest came out earlier this week).  GAO assessed the site and found “OMB and GSA staff emphasized that they have viewed as a tool for agencies to support cross-agency coordination and efforts to achieve agency goals” but “Agency officials stressed instead that they view primarily as an external reporting tool” and that they don’t use it themselves.
  • Scraping Federal Data for Business Intelligence.  The Open Data movement is intended to offer unprecedented transparency into federal spending and performance information.  But if collected and analyzed intelligently, this federal data can also be sold to businesses to better inform their business decisions.  A new company, Govini, does just that, for a hefty fee, reports Federal News Radio’s Tom Temin.  Meanwhile, the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act, which will provide more spending data publicly, has been reported out of committee in the House, and the President has signed an Open Data executive order to expand data availability, as well.


The Business of Government Radio Show:  Shelley Metzenbaum

The Business of Government Hour features a conversation about management with a government executive who is changing the way government does business. The executives discuss their careers and the management challenges facing their organizations.

Shelley Metzenbaum is the Former Associate Director of Performance and Personnel Management, Office of Management and Budget (OMB).  She is now the founding President of the Volcker Alliance.

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.