A new take on management

The Bush administration continues to scrutinize agencies' business cases, but this year there's a difference.

In fiscal 2005, Office of Management and Budget officials identified 621 major projects, representing $22 billion, that needed improvement, mainly in the areas of performance measures, earned value management and security. This is down slightly from the more than 750 projects that were placed on an at-risk list in fiscal 2004.

OMB officials have put the projects on what they call a "management watch list."

Karen Evans, OMB's administrator of e-government, information and technology policy, said agencies would be asked to look at their entire management approach, including security and performance, rather than go through the exercise of rewriting the business cases. The shift gives OMB more of a focus on management oversight rather than heavy-handed budgeting.

"It's never been about the business cases themselves," said William McVay, who led OMB's business case oversight for two years before joining DigitalNet Government Solutions as vice president of e-government solutions. "It's about the demonstration of management — or the lack there of."

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