Innovation

Four finalists left in SAVE Award competition

concept art innovation

Obama administration officials have picked four finalists in a search for inventive ways to lower costs in the government.

The ideas that made the almost-final cut for the 2012 Securing Americans Value and Efficiency (SAVE) Award are:

Post customs inspection information online. Laurie Dempsey from the Homeland Security Department suggested putting the Customs and Border Protection’s weekly bulletin of all imported items that have completed the inspection process on CBP.gov. CBP currently prints the bulletin that can be hundreds of pages long. It would save paper, reduce costs and make it easier to find items without coming to the office.

Use digital transcription instead of court reporters. Federal meetings and hearings often require a transcription of what is said. James Szender from the Interior Department said digital equipment is significantly cheaper than contracting with a certified court reporter to attend, record, and then transcribe the proceedings.

Host more conference calls and video calls to lessen the demand for shuttle buses. Angela Leroux from the Internal Revenue Service said buses often shuttle a few passengers from one office to another, but largely sit idle. The government could also offer Metro cards for employees who must travel.

Have older federal employees use the reduced senior fare, when they are eligible. Frederick Winter of the Education Department suggested the lower fares could save 50 percent on travel in the Washington, DC, metro area, with no loss of benefits.

Traditionally, the winner gets to present her or his idea to the president in the Oval Office. Agencies will consider other proposals for potential action or inclusion in the president’s budget proposal.

Government employees and the public can vote for the winner. To get more information and vote, click here.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

The 2015 Federal 100

Meet 100 women and men who are doing great things in federal IT.

Featured

  • Shutterstock image (by venimo): e-learning concept image, digital content and online webinar icons.

    Can MOOCs make the grade for federal training?

    Massive open online courses can offer specialized IT instruction on a flexible schedule and on the cheap. That may not always mesh with government's preference for structure and certification, however.

  • Shutterstock image (by edel): graduation cap and diploma.

    Cybersecurity: 6 schools with the right stuff

    The federal government craves more cybersecurity professionals. These six schools are helping meet that demand.

  • Rick Holgate

    Holgate to depart ATF

    Former ACT president will take a job with Gartner, follow his spouse to Vienna, Austria.

  • Are VA techies slacking off on Yammer?

    A new IG report cites security and productivity concerns associated with employees' use of the popular online collaboration tool.

  • Shutterstock image: digital fingerprint, cyber crime.

    Exclusive: The OPM breach details you haven't seen

    An official timeline of the Office of Personnel Management breach obtained by FCW pinpoints the hackers’ calibrated extraction of data, and the government's step-by-step response.

  • Stephen Warren

    Deputy CIO Warren exits VA

    The onetime acting CIO at Veterans Affairs will be taking over CIO duties at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.

  • Shutterstock image: monitoring factors of healthcare.

    DOD awards massive health records contract

    Leidos, Accenture and Cerner pull off an unexpected win of the multi-billion-dollar Defense Healthcare Management System Modernization contract, beating out the presumptive health-records leader.

  • Sweating the OPM data breach -- Illustration by Dragutin Cvijanovic

    Sweating the stolen data

    Millions of background-check records were compromised, OPM now says. Here's the jaw-dropping range of personal data that was exposed.

  • FCW magazine

    Let's talk about Alliant 2

    The General Services Administration is going to great lengths to gather feedback on its IT services GWAC. Will it make for a better acquisition vehicle?

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above