Digital Government Spotlight Data May Shed New Light on Opportunities

photo_Mohamad_65x85Mohamad Elbarasse, Analyst

As part of Federal CIO Steve Van Roekel’s Digital Government Strategy (DGS), has launched a new page on its website that provides a snapshot of major agencies’ progress against the milestones set out in his plan. The tool is designed to assist the public in measuring the progress that government agencies are making in the adoption of technology focused initiatives. Understanding the progress (or lack thereof) agencies are making against the DGS may help industry to uncover new opportunities to sell commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) products.

The Digital Government Strategy aims to push agencies to utilize efficiency-creating technologies and empower their workforce and citizenry by providing access to high-quality government information from anywhere, anytime, and on any device. DGS outlines ten milestones that roll up to one of the broader DGS goals. The table of milestones includes a list of selected deliverables from the DGS and their due dates, links to agency-specific progress reports, and an indication of that milestone’s status (not started, in progress, or completed).

Of the ten selected deliverables that are listed on the Digital Government Spotlight Data page, five of them have due dates that have already passed, with the remaining five due on May 23, 2013. Although, at least one deliverable, 1.2, has had its’ deadline extended until August 9, 2013 by an executive order establishing a government-wide open data policy.

At a glance, it would appear as though the overwhelming majority of agencies met at least two of the milestones with ease, specifically:

  • 7.1: “Engage with customers to identify at least two existing priority customer-facing services to optimize for mobile use”
  •  5.2: “Develop an enterprise-wise inventory of mobile devices and wireless service contracts.”

Although, some agencies are still struggling with deliverables that are past due, at least 13 agencies have not yet fully implemented performance and customer satisfaction measuring tools on all .gov websites (8.2) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has not even started working toward this milestone even though it is four months past due.

Though no one milestone has been achieved by all agencies, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and Social Security Administration (SSA) have set a great example for other agencies by completing all the listed deliverables ahead of schedule. On the other end of the spectrum, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have yet to complete any of the deliverables, but the majority of them are in progress.

The Departments of Homeland Security (DHS), Labor (DOL), and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) have the highest number of milestones that have not yet been started, specifically deliverables 5.3: “Evaluate the government-wide contract vehicles in the alternatives analysis for all new mobile-related procurements” and 6.3: “Ensure all new digital services follow digital services and customer experience improvement guidelines.”

The Digital Government Spotlight will help to keep the public informed of the progress agencies are making towards achieving the milestones set out in DGS and can provide insight into trouble areas for agencies that may be ripe with opportunities. May 23 is not only the deadline for most of the deliverables; it also marks the one year anniversary of DGS. With many agencies falling behind on the implementation schedule, this is a great opportunity for vendors to craft their messaging around enabling and assisting agencies in meeting their mandates.


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