Streamlining Government: Opportunities Exist to Strengthen OMB's Approach to Improving Efficiency Page: 51 of 73
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students to control energy use, and using an online system to review and
analyze billing and procurement of energy in deregulated markets.82
GPRA Could Provide a
Framework for Structuring
a More Strategic Approach
to Improving Government
The administration has not clearly indicated whether it will continue to
emphasize measuring efficiency at the program level as it did under PART.
Rather, in describing its approach to performance and management in the
President's budget,83 the Administration stated that GPRA and PART
increased the production of measurements in many agencies, resulting in
the availability of better measures than previously existed; however, these
initial successes have not led to increased use. To encourage senior
leaders to deliver results against the most important priorities, the
administration tasked agencies with identifying and committing to a
limited number of priority goals, generally three to eight, with high value
to the public. The goals were to have ambitious, but realistic, targets to
achieve within 18 to 24 months without need for new resources or
legislation, and well-defined, outcome-based measures of progress.
Further, in the coming year, the Administration will ask agency leaders to
carry out a similar priority-setting exercise with top managers of their
bureaus to set bureau-level goals and align those goals, as appropriate,
with agencywide priority goals. These efforts are not distinct from the
goal-setting and measurement expectations set forth in GPRA, but rather
reflect an intention to translate GPRA from a reporting exercise to a
performance improving practice across the federal government. By
making agencies' top leaders responsible for specific goals that they
themselves have named as most important, the Administration has stated
that it hopes to dramatically improve accountability and the chances that
government will deliver results on what matters most.
To complement the renewed focus on achieving priority outcomes, the
Administration has also proposed increased funding to conduct program
evaluations to determine whether and how selected programs are
contributing to desired outcomes. The Administration intends to take a
three-tiered approach to funding new program initiatives. First, more
money is proposed for promoting the adoption of programs and practices
that generate results backed up by strong evidence. Second, for an
additional group of programs with some supportive evidence but not as
82Officials also reported using energywatchdog.com to receive a rebate of approximately
$520,000 in fiscal year 2006 for overcharged utility costs at Job Corps centers.
"OMB, Analytical Perspectives, Budget of the United States Government, Fiscal Year
2011 (Washington D.C.: February 2010).
GAO-10-394 Streamlining Government
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United States. Government Accountability Office. Streamlining Government: Opportunities Exist to Strengthen OMB's Approach to Improving Efficiency, report, May 7, 2010; Washington D.C.. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc302236/m1/51/: accessed May 24, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.