Year Ahead

Scott Quehl: Sharing services at scale

global

Strategy and efficiency are terms not often tied together, but times change. Budget pressures now are permanent, forcing government agencies to rethink day-to-day activities and long-term goals. Technology will thread throughout government performance to help address this new reality, virtually reaching across agencies and to customers to transform service delivery.

This is the year when shared services become essential. Managing customer cases collaboratively beyond agency boundaries simply offers more. The success of BusinessUSA, where the Internet connects companies to more than 1,000 programs and information sources at nine agencies, suggests digital government’s promise.

Paying for those changes will increasingly come from C-suite leaders rethinking existing budgets. Will $25 million in savings from consolidating 200 personal computer contracts be considered a technology initiative? An acquisition initiative? A budget initiative? Or a human resource initiative if savings ease furlough pressures and fund tools to make the most of employee talents? All of the above.

There will also be funding from private partners ready to risk capital to share in savings. Imagine an agency with multiple, antiquated email platforms. The CIO, with the support of agency leaders and the financial and acquisition community, could lead a single cloud-based email implementation across the enterprise. Efficiencies would fund only half the migration, and the cloud provider would fund the balance, recovering its investment only when it meets service, security, savings and other requirements. A federal team would be equipped to monitor the provider and take action if performance falls short.

That will happen at a scale that makes a difference as agency leaders pull together and a thoughtful approach to sharing in savings is applied.

About the Author

Scott Quehl is a senior principal at Accenture Federal Services and a former chief financial officer at the Department of Commerce.

The Fed 100

Save the date for 28th annual Federal 100 Awards Gala.

Featured

  • Social network, census

    5 predictions for federal IT in 2017

    As the Trump team takes control, here's what the tech community can expect.

  • Rep. Gerald Connolly

    Connolly warns on workforce changes

    The ranking member of the House Oversight Committee's Government Operations panel warns that Congress will look to legislate changes to the federal workforce.

  • President Donald J. Trump delivers his inaugural address

    How will Trump lead on tech?

    The businessman turned reality star turned U.S. president clearly has mastered Twitter, but what will his administration mean for broader technology issues?

  • Login.gov moving ahead

    The bid to establish a single login for accessing government services is moving again on the last full day of the Obama presidency.

  • Shutterstock image (by Jirsak): customer care, relationship management, and leadership concept.

    Obama wraps up security clearance reforms

    In a last-minute executive order, President Obama institutes structural reforms to the security clearance process designed to create a more unified system across government agencies.

  • Shutterstock image: breached lock.

    What cyber can learn from counterterrorism

    The U.S. has to look at its experience in developing post-9/11 counterterrorism policies to inform efforts to formalize cybersecurity policies, says a senior official.

Reader comments

Thu, Jan 9, 2014

The statement -- "Efficiencies would fund only half the migration, and the cloud provider would fund the balance, recovering its investment only when it meets service, security, savings and other requirements. A federal team would be equipped to monitor the provider and take action if performance falls short." Does has cost associated to it. It is trade off -- in my opinion they have not proven that SS actually saves cost. These are just numbers and in reality I am not sure if these produce savings, efficiency or productivity!! Just a thought -- after looking into what is happening around.

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

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group