Government Embracing Evidence-Based Policy Making

In naming Jeffrey Zients to be Chief Performance Officer and Deputy Office of Management and Budget Director, President Obama signaled that the federal government would continue to build on the performance focus and reinventing government efforts of the past two administrations. Zients will help “streamline processes, cut costs, and find best practices throughout our government,” Obama said when he announced the nomination. Zients will be expected to lead the president's efforts on contracting reform, eliminating waste in the budget, building a performance agenda and creating more transparency in federal finances.

Those challenges faced by government organizations are not that different than those of business.  They need to do more with less, only all under the watchful eye of legislators, the media and the general public. And those challenges are best met with good performance management practices. Good government performance management needs solid strategic thinking and planning, clear articulation of key strategic objectives, transparent measurement of progress toward those objectives and analysis and communication of results to stakeholders.

Building a High-Performing Government

The Obama administration's management agenda will be based around six themes designed to create a High-Performing Government: 

  1. Putting Performance First: Replacing PART with a New Performance Improvement and Analysis Framework
  2. Ensuring Responsible Spending of Recovery Act Funds
  3. Transforming the Federal Workforce
  4. Managing Across Sectors
  5. Reforming Federal Contracting and Acquisition
  6. Transparency, Technology, and Participatory Democracy

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