Recent articles and resources on technology management and government
Fed workforce resists change
Source: Workforce Management
President Barack Obama has made government work cool again, according to Workforce Management magazine, but government hiring remains a mess.
On the plus side, the number of visitors to USAjobs.com jumped from 500,000 last summer to 2.8 million in January. But much of the interest has come from young applicants, who are not ready to step into the midgrade jobs many agencies are trying to fill.
One problem is the pay system, which only provides modest increases over time. As feds get more experience, they often head to industry for jobs with better pay and more opportunities for advancement.
Another issue is the federal application process, which is long and involved enough to discourage even the more enthusiastic would-be public servants. If Obama can fix that, "he will make a major contribution that will extend far beyond his four or eight years in office," one source told Workforce Management.
Pinching pennies in IT
Worried about the impact of budget cuts on your IT operations? InfoWorld suggests 16 ways to save money by reducing overhead costs. Not all the suggestions apply to government, but several do.
For example, one option is to re-evaluate service-level agreements, looking for opportunities to scale back expectations and costs for nonessential applications. Not every system needs to be available around the clock, one consultant points out.
Organizations should also scrutinize their storage systems for hidden pockets of unfilled capacity that can be used, putting off an upgrade for another year.
Along similar lines, look for applications that are sucking up support costs without providing any return on the investment and pull the plug.
A U.K. guide to better Web metrics
Source: U.K. Central Office of Information
The U.K. government, in the midst of an online renaissance, recently published guidance on improving the management of government Web sites.
The report includes methodologies for identifying the costs of Web sites, analyzing traffic data and assessing the quality of the sites. Central government departments must begin using the measures in fiscal 2009, while other agencies have until fiscal 2010.
The Central Office of Information undertook the initiative after a 2006 survey found that more than 25 percent of agencies did not track costs and 16 percent did not measure how their Web sites were used. The survey also concluded that quality of government sites had changed little since 2002.
A guide to LinkedIn privacy
Source: CIO magazine
CIO writer C.G. Lynch warns readers that they might be sharing more information than they intended when they signed up for the social-networking service LinkedIn.
The problem is that many users opt for LinkedIn's default privacy settings without giving it a second thought. Perhaps that is not a problem, but Lynch advises users to double-check their public profiles to ensure that they are comfortable with that information being so easily accessible.
"The level of information you reveal here might depend on your industry," he writes. "If you don't want competitors looking at certain information, you should check it off. If you're hoping to find a job on LinkedIn, you should make as much of it available as possible."