News from PPMRN - September 2010

President Obama Releases Memo To Senior Executive Service Highlighting Their Role In The Accountable Government Initiative

On September 14, 2010 President Obama released a memo highlighting the role of the Senior Executive Service in implementing the Accountable Government Initiative to cut waste and make government more open and responsive to the American public.

The President's memo accompanied a memo from Jeffrey D. Zients, Federal Chief Performance Officer and Deputy Director for Management, Office of Management and Budget, that provided a detailed update on the performance management agenda.

"The members of the Senior Executive Service (SES) play a pivotal role in executing this agenda.  As individuals, you serve as the link between your agencies' political leadership, front-line managers, and employees.  Your experience, expertise, and passion must drive the implementation of performance improvement efforts within your organizations. As a group, you set the tone and expectations for what the federal workforce can accomplish.  For us to succeed in overcoming skepticism and bureaucratic inertia, we need you to spread the belief that performance improvements are not only critical, they are well within our reach.

Our performance management efforts are focused on six strategies that have the highest potential for achieving meaningful performance improvement within and across Federal agencies.

1. Driving agency top priorities;
2. Cutting waste;
3. Reforming contracting;
4. Closing the IT gap;
5. Promoting accountability and innovation through open 

6. Attracting and motivating top talent.
Just as important as the choice of what strategies to pursue is how we pursue them.  We believe that the best way to achieve meaningful performance improvement is to focus on outcomes and to keep government attention on what we want to accomplish.  Rather than over-investing in plans about the work that needs to be done to "prepare for change," our approach is to drive meaningful, early results.  To that end, agencies have identified clear owners for each of our six performance strategies and for each agency high priority performance goal.  Agency leaders are holding regular goal-focused, data-driven reviews to stay focused on these goals, and to analyze past experience and other relevant information to guide their actions."
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Upcoming Events
Sept. 30-Oct. 2, 2010
Conference: International Society for Performance Improvement - Gothenberg, Sweeden

October 13-14, 2010
Conference: Association of Government Accountants (AGA) Performance Management Conference - Baltimore, MD

October 22-23, 2010
Conference: (The First) NECoPA: Northeast Conference on Public Administration - Newark, NJ

To see more events, click on the title Upcoming Events (above or here) to be taken to the full PPMRN calendar.
IBM Center Call for Research Report Proposals
The IBM Center for The Business of Government has published the 2010-2011 call for research report proposals.
October 1, 2010 and
March 1, 2011

Six areas of focus:
 * Performance improvement and 

 * Implementation of the Recovery Act
 * Workforce transformation
 * Collaboration and management
    across boundaries

* Contracting and acquisition
* Transparency and participatory
  democracy, using --Web 2.0

 For more information visit the IBM Center
Contact Us
Please send your comments, suggestions, story ideas, information about upcoming conferences and workshops, publications you would like to share, etc. to:

The Council of State Governments Launches States Perform Website To Educate State Policy Makers
Measuring how well states are performing is increasingly important as states face shrinking revenues and rising demand for services. Citizens want and expect results from their governments, even in the face of fewer resources. Measuring performance and using performance data to strategically place resources is key to implementing the accountable, transparent and results-focused governance policies that citizens demand. Measuring  performance is an essential tool of managing performance, providing the necessary information for informed, outcome-driven strategies.

States Perform  is an initiative of the Council of State Governments designed to educate state policy makers on the approaches states are taking to measuring and managing performance, and give them the tools to implement or improve their own programs. In addition, States Perform provides users with access to interactive, customizable and up-to-date comparative performance measurement data for 50 states in six key areas: fiscal and economic, public safety and justice, energy and environment, transportation, health and human services, and education.

To compare how your state performs as measured against others, visit the states perform website by clicking the graphic below.

States Perform Website
Results Scorecard Advertisement

The State of New Jersey Launches Comprehensive Website to Enhance State Government Transparency
Governor Chis Christie is pushing the State of New Jersey to make government more transparent to the citizens of the Garden State.  As part of that effort, a comprehensive website was launched in the late summer called YourMoney,NJ.Com that includes information on revenues, expenditures, executive orders, the public payroll, and the Governor's Performance Center, among others.  The site is designed to be easily accessible and provide linkages to information of interest to citizens and taxpayers in a single place.

"Governor Christie believes the data and analytical tools on this site will help taxpayers better understand public finances, make government more accountable and, ultimately, make an essential contribution to the Governor's effort to provide top quality services at prices the taxpayer can afford.

The goal is to let anyone follow State dollars from a line item in the Budget to the check written to a vendor. Searchable databases allow taxpayers to track the pay of government employees as well as tax and fee collections."

The Governor's Performance Center currently provides data for eight state agencies: Agriculture, Civil Service, Environmental Protection, Human Services, Transportation, Labor and Workforce Development, Treasury and the Motor Vehicle Commission.   Over the next year more agencies will participate in the Governor's Performance Center and the scope of data will continue to evolve as part of a larger effort to move toward performance-based budgeting. 

The performance measures for those agencies participating in the Governor's Performance Center were developed in consultation with the National Center for Public Performance at the School of Public Affairs and Administration at Rutgers University -Newark.   Among other things, the Center and School provided information on best practices and theoretical foundations for performance measurement and reporting to help ensure these efforts would be based upon the highest quality information and standards available.  Dr. Marc Holzer, Dean of the School of Public Affairs and Administration and Executive Director of the National Center for Public Performance states, "We are delighted to support the Governor's efforts to help institutionalize performance measurement activities as part of agency operations in the State of New Jersey.  Performance measurement, when done correctly, can provide meaningful data that will enhance decision-making at all levels."