On GovLoop Insights’ DorobekINSIDER:
TaskRabbit began six years ago as an online marketplace where users can outsource small jobs to others in the surrounding community. From buying your dog food, to picking up your dry cleaning, to installing your Ikea furniture, or cleaning your oven, the site contracts out any chore you can imagine. Now an emblem of today’s ‘sharing economy,’ millions all over America frequent the site. Like TaskRabbit, your organization should consider subcontracting your most needed projects to increase efficiency. Find out how.
You can find all of our programs online: DorobekINSIDER.com and GovLoop Insights at http://insights.govloop.com.
But up front: Three takeaways from #NextGenGov
Last week was the annual Next Generation of Government Training Summit -- and just like years past, it was a great event. There were a record number of people who attended -- but most importantly, there was even more focus and attention to improving government and making it better.
My three takeaways from the event:
1. Stop doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results: Giving due credit to Albert Einstein, this was the theme that kept coming through over two days and during the NextGen Awards. This is a time of change -- and that means possible disruptions, but also great opportunity.
2. Leadership isn’t reserved for corner offices: I have believed this for years, but as I overheard conversations, there were people who were finding their ways to lead. In some cases, they were small steps -- although I have to be honest, I don’t believe any step is small -- and some were significant. People at all levels can find ways to lead these days.
3. With power comes responsibility: This is such a unique time in history -- there are four generations all working together… there is technology that is changing how we live, work and even think… The more far-sighted government executives are looking for ways to learn from the next generation -- because they do things in ways that the gray-haired do not. And while there may be reasons that government does business the way it always has, it doesn’t always mean it is the best -- or right -- way to do them. That collaboration may not always be totally efficient, but it can be very powerful. One of my favorite quotes from NextGen: If You Want To Go Fast, Go Alone. If You Want To Go Far, Go Together.
I know I came away from NextGen energized -- and impressed.
Kudos to GovLoop and the Young Government Leaders. Thanks for inviting an old person along for a very fun ride. I’m already looking forward to 2014.
The SEVEN stories that impact your life
NPR: Lawmakers Reach Deal Intended To Fix VA System In Crisis- “ The Washington Post Reports that the deal struck by the chiefs of the House and Senate Veterans' Affairs committees would "provide funding to hire more doctors, nurses and other health-care professionals." The New York Times reports the deal calls for new facilities, upgrading the scheduling system and allowing "veterans who live far from a V.A. facility or who face wait times that exceed a certain duration to see private doctors, and have those visits paid for by the government."
Government Executive: Hiring Reform Bill Gains Momentum on Capitol Hill- “A bipartisan pair of House members has introduced a bill to improve federal hiring by allowing agencies to share information on job applicants, joining several senators pushing the same reforms. The 2014 Competitive Service Act, introduced by Virginia Reps. Gerry Connolly, D, and Rob Wittman, R, would allow agencies to collaborate on competitive service certificates when looking to fill a position in the same occupational series and within a similar grade level.”
Nextgov: Virtual Border Fence Project Halted After Raytheon Protest: A major border security project involving the deployment of 50 surveillance towers across southern Arizona is temporarily on hold, following a protest by Raytheon that the government improperly awarded the work to a rival. In a protest decision released Thursday afternoon, the Government Accountability Office ruled the Department of Homeland Security should reevaluate the competitors' proposals. Among other things, it is possible Raytheon was "prejudiced by the agency’s errors" during an evaluation of proposals, the ruling stated.”
FCW: A $300 million IT flop- “After six years of development at a cost of nearly $300 million, the Social Security Administration has decided to press "reset" on its project to improve a claim processing system after a recent report found it to be not up to the task. A report by McKinsey and Co., commissioned by the SSA in early 2014 on the status of the Disability Case Processing System, found that the program "delivered limited functionality, and faced schedule delays as well as increasing stakeholder concerns."
Federal News Radio: Senators back OFPP nominee, lambast OMB over communication breakdowns- “Senate lawmakers want an attitude adjustment from the Office of Federal Procurement Policy. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee members sought reassurance from Anne Rung, President Barack Obama's nominee to take over OFPP, that she would help deliver that change.”
Washington Post: U.N. calls for immediate cease-fire in Gaza as lull in fighting prevails- “International efforts to end the devastating three-week-old Gaza war intensified Monday with the U.N. Security Council calling for an “immediate and unconditional humanitarian cease-fire” in the conflict that has already claimed the lives of more than 1,035 Palestinians and 43 Israeli soldiers.”
Federal News Radio: Lawmakers respond to IRS email scandal with new regulations- “House lawmakers approved yet another bill in reaction to one of several ongoing debacles surrounding digital correspondence. The Federal Records Accountability Act would make each agency's lead records management official responsible for complying with the Records Act, including reporting missing or destroyed records to the archivist and to the public. It also would require any official business done on personal email accounts sent to an official government account to be logged. The committee said this would apply to instant messaging and texting as well.”
DorobekINSIDER water-cooler fodder... yes, we’re trying to help you make your water-cooler time better too...
TSA offering cash for ideas to speed up screening lines [The Los Angeles Times] TSA is offering $5,000 for the best ideas to streamline the screening process. “TSA is offering rewards totalling up to $15,000 for the best ideas for a queuing system. The TSA has long relied on the age-old first-come, first-served system that uses retractable belts and barriers to guide waiting travelers through checkpoints.”
NOTE: Current employees of the Transportation Security Administration are prohibited from submitting ideas/solutions to this Challenge, and any such idea/solution will not be considered for an award.
The deadline is Aug. 15, with submissions being accepted online. So far more than 200 ideas have been submitted: https://www.innocentive.com/ar/challenge/9933343