Strong Central Management of Office Automation Will Boost Productivity

AFMD-82-54: Published: Sep 21, 1982. Publicly Released: Oct 6, 1982.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the management of office automation in the Federal Government.

The four agencies GAO reviewed are not reaping the maximum benefits or productivity gains from office automation because they lack strong central management. The agencies are now encountering the same problems successful private companies have tried to avoid. These problems are likely to grow as these agencies expand their office automation efforts. Strong central management can be achieved by these agencies if they take advantage of the Paperwork Reduction Act's information management requirements. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the General Services Administration, and the National Bureau of Standards are responsible for helping agencies obtain the maximum benefit from office automation. However, these agencies have not provided adequate leadership and guidance which has often resulted in the development of office automation systems which duplicate existing systems, are not compatible with other systems, and are not cost effective.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Navy to designate a central group with responsibility for coordinating efforts to plan, develop, and implement office automation.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Navy to designate a central group with responsibility for coordinating efforts to plan, develop, and implement office automation.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Administrator of General Services should issue "how to" management guidelines for the agencies that provide criteria on planning, developing, managing, and evaluating office automation systems. These guidelines should be periodically reviewed and updated on the basis of new technological developments in office automation. They should also be approved by OMB before being released.

    Agency Affected: General Services Administration

  4. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Administrator of General Services should establish a forum of agency managers to exchange information and experiences on their past, current, and planned office automation efforts.

    Agency Affected: General Services Administration

  5. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration should establish a central group with responsibility for coordinating efforts to plan, develop, and implement office automation.

    Agency Affected: National Aeronautics and Space Administration

  6. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Agriculture should direct the Chief of the Forest Service designate a central group within the Forest Service with responsibility for coordinating efforts to plan, develop, and implement office automation.

    Agency Affected: Department of Agriculture

  7. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Agriculture should direct the Chief of the Forest Service designate a central group within the Forest Service with responsibility for coordinating efforts to plan, develop, and implement office automation.

    Agency Affected: Department of Agriculture: Forest Service

  8. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Labor should hold the Directorate of Information Technology accountable for providing strong central leadership of office automation throughout the Department.

    Agency Affected: Department of Labor

 

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