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Thursday, August 01, 2013

Federal shared services takes hold through Uncle Sam's List

Uncle Sam's list is up and running, and is one example of how shared services is taking hold across government.

Lisa Schlosser, the federal government's deputy chief information officer, said the website lists more than 100 shared services and more are on the way.

The Office of Management and Budget called for the creation of Uncle Sam's list as part of its shared services implementation guide released in April.

Uncle Sam's List is an internal community within the MAX.gov collaboration site that is maintained by the CIO Council's Shared Services subcommittee.

The list provides information on IT shared service areas, providers and related existing contract vehicles.

The fact that in a few short months agencies are populating the site with shared services shows the impact of OMB's strategy, which it released in May 2012.

OMB also established the Shared Services Executive Council of all the providers. She said the group shares best practices and discuss where the value of shared services is coming from.

She added the broader definition of shared services is helping agencies get their arms around the concept better. OMB is encouraging agencies not just to look at the shared service providers for human resources or financial management, but look at consolidating systems or contracts internally too.

One example is the Commerce Department, which reduced the number of contracts to buy computers.

The agency said it's paying 35 percent less for desktop computers than it did previously, and is saving more than $200 million on administrative costs more broadly.

Agencies are finding those opportunities in two ways.

Schlosser said PortfolioStat continues to bring the CXO community together to prioritize opportunities.

Secondly, agencies submitted to OMB an enterprise roadmap earlier this year as required under the May 2012 strategy.

-Jason Miller, FederalNewsRadio.com

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