OMB opens eye to consolidating budget, records and other functions

The administration’s next set of initiatives targeted for consolidation are coming into focus.

Richard Burk, the Office of Management and Budget’s chief architect, said earlier this week that groups either have started or will start analyzing four new areas for functions that are common across all agencies and that could be standardized or consolidated. These areas include:

  • Budget formulation and budget execution

  • Records management

  • IT infrastructure, telecommunications and desktop

  • Procurement

In fact, an interagency group of budget officers already started defining the functions that all agencies share and how they fit with the Financial Management Line of Business effort.

“They have met three times and are collecting information,” Burk said at panel discussion in Washington sponsored by the Association for Federal Information Resources Managers. “They asked OMB for help with the LOB methodology and we did an analysis of the Business Reference Model for the two functional areas.”

OMB also has been analyzing IT infrastructure, telecommunications and desktop, he added.

“We are breaking down the joint business cases and analyzing them,” he said. “Agency expenditures are increasing and we think they should decrease or at least stabilize. We want to look at where the costs can be decreased while maintaining efficiencies.”

Burk said OMB would finish that analysis this summer.

OMB also will start culling for records management functions once the CIO Council’s Architecture and Infrastructure Committee finishes the records management profile for the Federal Enterprise Architecture.

“The records management analysis may include content management, document management or other areas,” he said. “There also may be other areas that agencies can consolidate or standardize internally that they have to figure out.”

John Sindelar, the project executive for OMB’s Lines of Business projects, said agencies should analyze investments to figure out where the redundancy exists and then “managing your way out of it. That is what the FEA is for.”

Sindelar also said the LOB projects need to give industry more notice about agency migration schedules so they can participate.

OMB is expected to release a request for proposal or other type of information for industry this summer on how vendors will provide financial management and human resources management services to the government under the LOB initiatives.

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