Karen Evans on OMB's Lines of Business initiatives

Karen Evans on OMB's Lines of Business initiatives<@VM>Question and Answer<@VM>Submit a question

Karen Evans, Office of Management and Budget administrator for e-government and IT, discussed the nine Lines of Business initiatives that the administration is pursuing during an online editorial forum. She talked about the administration's expectations, upcoming milestones and how the LOB's will change the way the government does business.

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$qna_responses[] = "Moderator Jason Miller: Good morning everyone, and welcome to today's editorial online forum featuring Karen Evans, the Office of Management and Budget's administrator for e-government and IT. Karen is available to answer your questions about the nine Lines of Business initiatives that the administration is pursuing. We've got a bevy of questions already, so let's get the ball rolling!
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$qna_responses[] = "Big Bear City,CA: Briefly explain e-government.
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Karen Evans: E-government is about having the greatest access to government information and services through the use of technology.
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$qna_responses[] = "Maryann, VA: It's unclear to many of us online if this forum is in progress, how come we see nothing going on?
Should there be sound? Should there be speaking?
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Karen Evans: I apologize for the delay. You should be seeing answers shortly. :-)
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$qna_responses[] = "Washington DC: Given that the FMLoB will cover grant obligation and expenditure funding status, and that you already have a single application portal for competitive discretionary grants, what else, if anything, is envisioned for the Grants line of business?
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Karen Evans: With the way the lines of business work and our efforts with the Federal Enterprise Architecture, we do see many opportunities for streamlining similar business processes across multiple agencies.
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$qna_responses[] = "Marcia Shell: To promote standadization of business processes and a FM LOB will require the implementation of a quality business model. Currently HQ, Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) effectively utilizes a quasi- ISO-9000(International Standards for Organization), Integrated Management System (IMS) for exceeding customer and statuatory requirements. From a systems perspective, core values that form the overall integrating mechanisim for a Quality Management System can be integrated and mapped to ISO quality management principles and criteria for performance excellence (such as Baldrige.) The expertise and information is out there, but needs to be integrated! Would like to share a draft strategic strawman for integrated management charts, entitled "Governing With Accountability" if anyone is interested. marcia.shell@uspto.gov
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Karen Evans: Sure. Send to us here at OMB.
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$qna_responses[] = "Charles Conyers,Virginia: What is the purpose of OMB's solictation of the private sector as Shared Service Centers? Is it for them to perform as Transactional (Phase I)Centers, Consulting (Phase II) centers or both?
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Karen Evans: The services of the private sector along with the public sector will enable the federal government to obtain best value in an competitive environment for improving our financial management services.
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$qna_responses[] = "Mike - Colorado: How does OMB intend to avoid duplicating common business functions / processes across each level of the currently identified 9 LOBs, and of course all future LOBs? For example almost every LOB will involve some type "Manage Inventory Asset" process.
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Karen Evans: As we standardize the line of business' architectures, such common functions emerge and we will pursue such standardization.
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$qna_responses[] = "Tyson's Corner, VA: Has the guidance for any of the LOB/COE's been published to date? If so, where would I obtain a copy?
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Karen Evans: FMLOB Migration guidance will be released in draft by the end of May for public comment.
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$qna_responses[] = "Fairfax, VA: 1. For LoBs that will use a Shared Services Center, what mandatory services must be included.
2. If an agency already outsources IT hosting (for HR or FM support) to the private sector as they (a)in compliance with the LoB initiative and (b) required to comply with A-76 requirements?
3. What affects do you see on an agency enterprise architecture by moving it's core financial system to a SSC?
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Karen Evans: 1. Hosting and application management;
2. You will need to work with OMB to determine your compliance in both situations;
3. Where you source a line of business you have to ensure the connections remain through the agency's internal lines of business which will be reflected through the entire agency's EA and it is properly included in all agency transition plans.
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$qna_responses[] = "Kevin Hunter:

In my experience with the IT Infrastructure LOB initiative, OMB’s push for consolidation of services into Centers of Excellence or other central providers seems very rushed. There is also a feeling that those organizations with enough clout will be “excused” from the process, leaving other groups to fill the “quotas” for assimilation. This is what already happens within many federal enterprises, especially the larger ones.
On the other hand, the LOB process makes it clear that many organizations are independently trying to solve many of the same problems with varying approaches and levels of success.
Wouldn’t it be a “best practice” to focus initially on collecting, assessing, evaluating, and disseminating best practices among federal IT shops? If OMB can engage those shops in identifying the best “wheels”, especially those that demonstrate resource savings, would that not establish a base upon which such a community could far better assess the longer-term benefits of any type of consolidation efforts?
The drive for quick, measurable results should not be allowed to produce plans that will cause most government organizations to work hardest at an exemption from those plans.



I’d appreciate your comments, thank you.



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Karen Evans: We have been collecting "best practices" and "promising practices" and they are documented both in the public and private sector. However, it is now time to actually execute some of these practices and achieve results for the American citizens.
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$qna_responses[] = "Washington, DC: Regarding the FMLOB - what is your vision for also consolidating the "feeder systems" such as asset management and personnel systems?
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Karen Evans: Asset management is currently included in the President's initiative called Fed Asset Sales and the personnel systems are included in the HR Line of Business.
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$qna_responses[] = "Marcia Shell: Would be glad to send the presentation, please provide an email address. Thanks!
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Karen Evans: All of our email addresses are located at the www.cio.gov Web site.
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$qna_responses[] = "Glenn Davidson: Would OMB consider introducing a "sourcing advisor" strategy into the LOB mix, whereby an independent third-party consultant helps the agency determine its requirements, prepare business cases, help with the migration to the new services provider, establish service level and cost parameters, and manage the relationship?
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Karen Evans: Agencies are able to secure any necessary services they feel they need to prepare for their investment decisions. Also, please reference our guidance for Improving IT project planning and execution (dated 8/4/05).
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Moderator Jason Miller: Here is the link.
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$qna_responses[] = "Anthony Insolia, Washington DC:

Karen,



Lines of businesses in the private sector are usually measured by profit and loss (P&L). How will the Federal Government's LOBs be measured?



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Karen Evans: We are using a variety of measures. We use EVM, cost avoidance, actual cost saving to be reflected in agencies' budget, etc.
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$qna_responses[] = "Ann-Marie, VA: At the IOI LOB Practitioner's Day, it was stated that we would not see documentation on the RFI outcome but that the results would be reflected in the budget. If one of the optimization plans is to move to a shared infrastructure environment how will this be reflected in the budget? For example, if it is decided to implement a shared data center how would we see this reflected? Who will receive the budget for the plan?
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Karen Evans: The agencies will reflect the solutions in their budget and you will see what is submitted to Congress by the President. Additionally, should there be a common, governmentwide solution recommended and approved, this will be included in the President's Budget in the Analytical Perspectives, usually, Chapter 9.
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Moderator Jason Miller: Karen has agreed to continue to answer questions for another 20 minutes until 11:50 a.m.
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$qna_responses[] = "Kevin Hunter, Virginia: Ms. Evans:
On the IT LOB: wasn't part of the reason for A-300 submissions to allow government offices to view the submissions of others as an aid in collaboration? When will that be possible?
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Karen Evans: We do develop business cases for the common solutions and they are reviewed by all of the agencies for comment. This usually happens during the summer months so they can incorporate the findings into their budget submissions.
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$qna_responses[] = "Fairfax, VA: Can you comment on the federated e-authentication framework project? It seems once again dead in the water. Two years ago the e-authentication gateway was trashed, and it's looking like this will go the same way. How can citizens expect to take part in e-government initiatives when GSA can't seem to figure a model that works? There are really no CSP's willing to participate because there isnt much in it for them. How can this change? What are your thoughts on a citizen CAC, and forget all this other stuff?
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Karen Evans: E-authentication service component is available to agencies on Core.gov. Also, this remains a Presidential E-Gov initiative with agencies required to use the services available in lieu of developing their own. For example, Grants.gov is using the services for E-Authentication, so is SSA with a pilot with Fidelity and USDA has moved many of their applications to use the services of E-Authentication. Finally, our implementation of the Homeland Security Presidential Directive-12 for federal government employees and contractors builds from this initiatve as well.
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$qna_responses[] = "Dallas, TX: Why doesn't OMB plan to designate any private sector firms as financial management centers of excellence as they are doing for the public sector? It seems that this would reduce duplication of efforts and save each individual agency time and money from having to do the analysis themselves.
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Karen Evans: We envision competition for private sector firms along with certain public sector centers who were designated capable of providing the service. You may want to check the due diligence checklist available on the www.egov.gov Web site.
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$qna_responses[] = "Raleigh NC: Ms. Evans, how long do you believe it will be before private sector organizations will have the opportunity to provide the same services to the agencies as the Federal Shared Services Centers currently provide?
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Karen Evans: Private sector organizations already have had the opportunity to compete. For example, the Department of Labor has awarded their FMLOB work to the private sector and EPA has just closed their RFP for the FMLOB which was also open to both private and public sector.
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Moderator Jason Miller: Great question. There has been a lot of interest from the private sector. Here is our story on the Labor award.
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$qna_responses[] = "Arlington, VA: Is SmartBUY one of the E-Gov Initiatives, an LoB, or both? Is the program meeting OMB's expectations?
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Karen Evans: We consider the SmartBUY an E-Gov initiative, and yes it is meeting our expectations. However, we would like to have more of these agreements in place.
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$qna_responses[] = "Julie Virginia: What level of collaboration and communication exists between Federal agencies on each of these E-Gov Initiatives? If there is little to none, what risk do we introduce to the Initiatives that we are replacing multiple stove-piped solutions with a common stove-pipe solution? There is always a risk in migration, integration, aggregation, and retirement of systems that we inherently lose mission-critical functionality. How do you ensure these requirements are addressed at the lowest levels within an agency?
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Karen Evans: We have interagency task forces made of representatives identified by their deputy secretaries or deputy administrators to ensure communications and agency requirements are addressed. I agree we always have to mitigate risk with any IT efforts. The agency representatives are suppose to address all of these concerns. As far as implementation of any of the common governmentwide solutions, the requirements and issues are to managed and addressed by the department's CIO in conjunction with the cross agency initiatives' managing partner(s).
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$qna_responses[] = "Washington, DC: I recently read that all LOB initiatives and e-gov initiatives must be fully implemented by 2008. Does that mean that all agencies will have migrated to LOB solutions by 2008? If agencies had planned to migrate later, will OMB require them to change their plans and migrate sooner?
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Karen Evans: Could you let me know where you have read this? Because each initiative and each agency has their own implementation plan. These plans are developed to address the life cycle of their investments and there is no one size fits all nor hard fast date for each one. There are dates associated with HSPD-12 and IPv6 transition. Both of these have specific milestones but again an agency specific implementation plan.
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$qna_responses[] = "Lee, Virginia: It seems that FEA guidance to the LoBs is often in the form of mappings to the FEA Ref Models vs. common solution "architecture" in a more traditional sense. Can you provide any clarification?
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Karen Evans: Recent guidance to the lines of business include concepts of operation defining a more traditional architecture approach around a variety of solutions. We continue to have the lines of business map their solutions to the reference models to ensure continuity across the lines of business.
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$qna_responses[] = "Washington, DC: Has OMB selected Centers of Excellence for any of the Information System Security LOB focus areas (Training, FISMA Reporting, etc.)? If so, when will the COEs be announced? Do other federal agencies still have an opportunity to apply for COE status for these areas, or has OMB identified sufficient COEs for all the focus areas and tiered components within the areas (such as for Training -- tier 1 annual refresher training and tier 2 specialized training)?
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Karen Evans: We are process of working with DHS to make these selections. If you are interested in applying for one of the areas, you should let DHS or GSA know.
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$qna_responses[] = "Washington, DC: I thought GCN reported in April 2006 that all OMB wanted e-gov initiatives would have to be completed by 2008. Maybe someone at GCN could dig up the article.
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Moderator Jason Miller: Here is the link to the article you were referring to. But Clay Johnson, OMB's deputy director for management, was referring to the 25 E-Gov initiatives and not the LOB iniaitives. Sorry if there was some confusion.
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$qna_responses[] = "Moderator Jason Miller: And on that note, this concludes GCN.com's online forum. Once again, please accept our apologies for the delayed start to the forum, and apologies to those as well whose questions were not answered. Thanks to everyone who submitted questions today, and thanks to Karen for sharing her time with us. To view the transcript of today's forum, as well as past GCN.com forums, visit our Forum Archive.
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Q & A:

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