Telecommunications:

Agencies Need Better Controls to Achieve Significant Savings on Mobile Devices and Services

GAO-15-431: Published: May 21, 2015. Publicly Released: May 21, 2015.

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Contact:

Carol R. Cha
(202) 512-4456
chac@gao.gov

 

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What GAO Found

Most of the 15 agencies GAO reviewed did not have an inventory of mobile devices and associated services that can be used to assess device usage. The majority of agencies delegated responsibility of their inventories to their components. Only 5 of the 15 agencies had complete service and device inventories at either the enterprise-level or at the components GAO reviewed. The remaining agencies either did not have inventories or those inventories did not account for all devices and services.

Similarly, only 1 of the 15 agencies GAO reviewed had documented procedures for monitoring spending by reviewing devices and associated service plans for overuse, underuse, or zero use, which are key indicators of potential inefficient use. Eleven agencies had procedures that either addressed some of the potential aspects of inefficient use or were incompletely documented. Three agencies did not have any documented procedures for monitoring mobile device usage.

Number of Agencies That Followed Guidance on Managing Mobile Devices and Services

 

Fully satisfied

Met some but not all

Did not satisfy

Inventory (devices and services)

5

7

3

Procedures

1

11

3

Source: GAO analysis of agency data. | GAO-15-431

A key reason agencies did not have enterprise-wide inventories and adequate procedures for monitoring and controlling spending is that they took a decentralized approach to managing mobile device spending. Without an inventory that includes each device and associated service limits and rates, as well as documented procedures to assess device usage relative to service rate plans, agencies have a limited ability to monitor device usage and determine if a device should be canceled or moved to a more cost-effective service plan. Further, without a reliable inventory of mobile service contracts, agencies are less likely to identify opportunities for consolidation, and thus are less likely to achieve cost savings.

In addition, although the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) identified a goal for financial savings related to mobile devices and services, it has not measured progress toward that goal, as called for by leading practices in performance management. Instead, an OMB analyst said that OMB provides agencies with information on rates paid by other agencies because it believes such information is more effective at convincing agencies to achieve savings. However, without measuring progress toward its goal, OMB has little assurance that its approach is effective.

Regarding monthly mobile service costs, according to reports to OMB that GAO reviewed, agencies paid a range of rates per line for various service combinations, from $21 for 200 voice minutes, unlimited data, and 200 text messages, to $122 for unlimited voice, data, and text messages. Agencies also paid different rates for the same bundle of services. For example, for the unlimited voice, text, and data bundles, agencies paid between $69 and $122 per month.

Why GAO Did This Study

According to the most recent OMB estimate, the federal government spends about $1.2 billion annually on about 1.5 million mobile devices and associated services. OMB has identified the potential for achieving efficiencies and reducing spending on mobile technology.

GAO was asked to study management of federal mobile devices. This report's objectives were to (1) determine the extent to which federal agencies developed and maintained inventories of mobile devices and wireless services, (2) determine the extent to which agencies established procedures for monitoring and controlling spending on these devices and services, and (3) describe agencies' mobile service rates. For the 15 agencies having the highest reported annual telecommunications spending, GAO compared their inventories and procedures with federal guidance, and identified service rates reported to OMB. For each agency that delegated responsibilities to components, GAO assessed two components' inventories and procedures. GAO also interviewed agency and OMB officials.

What GAO Recommends

To better control mobile device spending, GAO recommends that the 15 agencies take actions to improve their inventories and control processes and that OMB measure and report progress in achieving mobile cost savings. OMB and 14 agencies generally agreed with the recommendations or had no comment. One agency, the Department of Defense, partially agreed, but GAO maintains actions are still needed.

For more information, contact Carol R. Cha at (202) 512-4456 or chac@gao.gov.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Agriculture has described steps it has taken to implement the recommendation. Specifically, the department reported in February 2016 that it completed, in November 2015, a consolidated inventory management module that is integrated with its telecommunications expense management system and automates inventory management processes for the department's wireless services. The department reported that the system provides standard reports and automated validation of each wireless vendor inventory against billed services. As of September 2016, we are in the process of working with the department to verify that it has established a department-wide inventory of mobile devices and associated services, in accordance with our recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Agriculture should ensure an inventory of mobile devices and services is established department-wide (i.e., all components' devices and associated services are accounted for).

    Agency Affected: Department of Agriculture

  2. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Agriculture has not yet implemented the recommendation. The department reported in, February 2016, that it was in the process of developing procedures to monitor and control spending on mobile devices and services, which it planned to issue in August 2017. We will continue to monitor the department's implementation of the recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Agriculture should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Agriculture

  3. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Commerce has yet to implement this recommendation. In response to our report, the department said it planned to address the recommendation by the second quarter of fiscal year 2016. However, as of August 2016, it has to demonstrate that it has done so. We will continue to monitor the department's progress.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Commerce should ensure an inventory of mobile devices and services is established department-wide (i.e., all components' devices and associated services are accounted for).

    Agency Affected: Department of Commerce

  4. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Commerce has yet to implement this recommendation. In response to our report, the department said it planned to address the recommendation by the second quarter of fiscal year 2016. However, as of August 2016, it has to demonstrate that it has done so. We will continue to monitor the department's progress.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Commerce should ensure a reliable department-wide inventory of mobile service contracts is developed and maintained.

    Agency Affected: Department of Commerce

  5. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Commerce has yet to implement this recommendation. In response to our report, the department said it planned to address the recommendation by the second quarter of fiscal year 2016. However, as of August 2016, it has to demonstrate that it has done so. We will continue to monitor the department's progress.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Commerce should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Commerce

  6. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Defense has yet to implement this recommendation. In a July 2016, the Department reported that it does not maintain a single, centralized device level inventory and that instead, the military departments track and manage their own devices and contracted wireless services as separate enterprises. However, as we stated in our report, the inventory need not be generated centrally at the headquarters level; the department can compile a comprehensive inventory using its components' complete inventories. Therefore, we will continue to work with DOD to address this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Defense ensure an inventory of mobile devices and services is established department-wide (i.e., all components' devices and associated services are accounted for).

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  7. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Defense has yet to implement this recommendation. The department updated its inventory in August 2015; however, it has not updated it since. The department reported that it's next update is planned for November 2016.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Defense ensure a reliable department-wide inventory of mobile service contracts is developed and maintained.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  8. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Health and Human Services has taken steps to implement this recommendation. Specifically, as of August 2016, it has provided two contract inventories; however, it has yet to demonstrate that it updates them quarterly. We will continue to monitor the department's implementation of this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Health and Human Services should ensure a current department-wide inventory of mobile service contracts is developed and maintained.

    Agency Affected: Department of Health and Human Services

  9. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Health and Human Services has yet to implement this recommendation. In April 2016, an audit liaison in the Office of the Chief Information Officer reported that each component maintains processes and procedures for device management. However, the department did not provide evidence that it ensures that components have established procedures that address the elements of our recommendation. We will continue to monitor the department's implementation of this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Health and Human Services should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Health and Human Services

  10. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Homeland Security has yet to implement this recommendation. In August 2016, the department reported that it had identified all components' devices. However, it did not provide evidence that it had ensured that the components had inventories of unique devices and associated services. We will continue to monitor the department's efforts to implement the recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Homeland Security should ensure an inventory of mobile devices and services is established department-wide (i.e., all components' devices and associated services are accounted for).

    Agency Affected: Department of Homeland Security

  11. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Homeland Security has yet to implement this recommendation. In August 2016, the department provided a contracts inventory report. However, it did not account for all the devices that the department reported it had identified in 2016. We will continue to monitor the department's efforts to implement the recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Homeland Security should ensure a reliable department-wide inventory of mobile service contracts is developed and maintained.

    Agency Affected: Department of Homeland Security

  12. Status: Open

    Comments: In August 2016, the Department of Homeland Security reported steps it was taking to address this recommendation. Specifically, it reported that its Office of the Chief Information Officer Enterprise Business Management Office was working with component wireless subject matter experts to draft procedures for all department components to standardize wireless management, monitoring, and control practices. The department expects to complete this procedures document by November 2016.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Homeland Security should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Homeland Security

  13. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of the Interior has yet to implement this recommendation. In July 2015, it reported that it was planning an agency-wide strategic sourcing initiative to support mobile devices and services. The initiative would require the awardee to conduct a complete inventory of devices and legacy service contracts as they transition to the new contract(s). The department reported that it would take as long as 12 months after contract award to complete full transition and inventory. As of September 1, 2016, the department has not provided an update on the status of its activities.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of the Interior should ensure an inventory of mobile devices and services is established department-wide (i.e., all components' devices and associated services are accounted for).

    Agency Affected: Department of the Interior

  14. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of the Interior has yet to implement this recommendation. In July 2015, it reported that it was planning an agency-wide strategic sourcing initiative to support mobile devices and services. The department reported that the initiative would require the enterprise cellular contract awardee to conduct a complete inventory of legacy service contracts as they transition to the new contract(s). The department reported that it would take as long as 12 months after contract award to complete full transition and inventory. As of September 1, 2016, the department has not provided an update on the status of its activities.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of the Interior should ensure a reliable department-wide inventory of mobile service contracts is developed and maintained.

    Agency Affected: Department of the Interior

  15. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of the Interior has yet to implement this recommendation. In July 2015, it reported that it was developing the processes and procedures recommended in our report, as part of an agency-wide strategic sourcing initiative to support mobile devices and services. The department planned to publish these processes and procedures when it awarded an enterprise cellular contract. As of September 1, 2016, the department has not provided an update on the status of its activities.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of the Interior should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of the Interior

  16. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Justice has yet to demonstrate that it has implemented this recommendation. In May 2015, we reported that the department had developed an inventory of mobile service contracts but had not maintained it for one of the quarters between May and November 2014. In response to our report, the department stated that it agreed with the recommendation to ensure that a department-wide inventory is maintained and would continue to collect and submit quarterly mobile service contracts information to the Office of Management and Budget. However, as of August 2016, it has yet to demonstrate that it has done this. We will continue to monitor the department's progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Attorney General should ensure a department-wide inventory of mobile service contracts is maintained.

    Agency Affected: Department of Justice

  17. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Justice has taken steps to implement this recommendation. Specifically, in response to our findings, the department's Chief Information Officer issued a memo that required components to provide the CIO, by June 2015, their plans for implementing the requirements in the memo by September 30, 2015. However, as of August 2016, the department has yet to demonstrate that its components have implemented the requirements. We will continue to monitor the department's progress.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Attorney General should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Justice

  18. Status: Open

    Comments: As of April 2016, the Department of State had yet to implement this recommendation. The department reported that it was in the process of evaluating existing enterprise systems, processes and policies that were currently in use to better address our recommendation. We will continue to monitor the department's progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of State should ensure an inventory of mobile devices and services is established department-wide (i.e., all components' devices and associated services are accounted for).

    Agency Affected: Department of State

  19. Status: Open

    Comments: As of April 2016, the Department of State had yet to implement this recommendation. The department reported that it was in the process of evaluating existing enterprise systems, processes and policies that were currently in use to better address our recommendation. We will continue to monitor the department's progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of State should ensure a reliable department-wide inventory of mobile service contracts is maintained.

    Agency Affected: Department of State

  20. Status: Open

    Comments: As of April 2016, the Department of State had yet to implement this recommendation. The department reported that it was in the process of evaluating existing enterprise systems, processes and policies that were currently in use to better address our recommendation. It also reported that it had established quarterly reviews with all domestic service providers to improve usage management and management, and that the reviews highlight lines of service with zero, under and over usage. However, as of August 2016, the department has not provided evidence that it has ensured that procedures that address the elements of our recommendation have been established department-wide We will continue to monitor the department's progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of State should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of State

  21. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Transportation has yet to demonstrate that it has implemented our recommendation. In July 2016, the Department reported that the Office of the Chief Information Officer and all Operating Administrations have documented procedures in place. However, the department did not provide the procedures or evidence that it has ensured that procedures addressing the elements of our recommendation have been established department-wide. We will follow-up with the department to monitor its progress in implementing this recommendation and obtain supporting documentation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Transportation should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Transportation

  22. Status: Open

    Comments: In May 2016, the Department of Treasury reported that it had performed data calls to collect data on mobile device inventories across the Department. We will monitor the department's progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of the Treasury should ensure an inventory of mobile devices and services is established department-wide (i.e., all components' devices and associated services are accounted for).

    Agency Affected: Department of the Treasury

  23. Status: Open

    Comments: As of May 2016, the Department of Veterans Affairs had yet to implement this recommendation. The department reported that it was pursuing more automated monitoring to compare assigned minutes against usage for future planning, and to identify underused devices and opportunity to save costs. The department also reported that it was working to acquire and implement a capability for centralized management of mobile devices. We will monitor the department's efforts to ensure that procedures that address the elements of our recommendation are established department-wide.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Veterans Affairs

  24. Status: Open

    Comments: The Environmental Protection Agency described steps it has taken to implement this recommendation. Specifically, it reported in October 2015 that it had conducted a management review and identified improvements that would ensure that the agency has a complete inventory of mobile devices and services. However, as of August 2016, it has yet to demonstrate that it has established a complete inventory. We will continue to monitor the agency's progress.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency should ensure a complete inventory of mobile devices and associated services is established.

    Agency Affected: Environmental Protection Agency

  25. Status: Open

    Comments: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) described steps it was taking to implement this recommendation. Specifically, in October 2015, EPA reported that it was in the process of consolidating all of its contracts into an agency-wide cellular services blanket purchase agreement by the end of the third quarter of fiscal year 2016. However, as of August 2016, it has yet to demonstrate that it has a reliable mobile service contracts inventory. We will continue to monitor EPA's progress.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency should ensure a reliable inventory of mobile service contracts is maintained.

    Agency Affected: Environmental Protection Agency

  26. Status: Open

    Comments: The Environmental Protection Agency has yet to implement this recommendation. In July 2016, the agency reported that program offices receive quarterly mobile device utilization reports and are requested to review them. However, as of August 2016, the agency has yet to provide documented procedures that address the elements of our recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established agency-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Environmental Protection Agency

  27. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: As of July 2015, GSA has implemented our recommendation. Specifically, we reported in May 2015, that the agency had established procedures to assess devices for zero usage; however, they did not include assessing devices for under or over usage. In July 2015, GSA documented steps to take to assess devices for under or over usage

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Acting Administrator of General Services should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: General Services Administration

  28. Status: Open

    Comments: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has described steps it was taking; however, it has yet to demonstrate that it has implemented this recommendation. Specifically, in July 2015, NASA stated that it was in the final stages of issuing guidance which mandates the use of a single existing agency-wide vendor to provide all mobile devices and associated services, and that once the guidance was issued and all the devices were brought under the contract NASA would have a monthly deliverable depicting the services of all mobile devices. These steps were planned to be complete by June 15, 2016. However, as of August 2016, the agency has yet to demonstrate that it has established a complete inventory of mobile devices and services.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration should ensure a complete inventory of mobile devices and associated services is established.

    Agency Affected: National Aeronautics and Space Administration

  29. Status: Open

    Comments: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) described steps it was taking, but has yet demonstrate that it has implemented this recommendation. Specifically, NASA stated that it concurred with the recommendation and planned to develop and issue guidance applicable to all NASA centers by August 17, 2016. However, as of September 1, 2016, it has yet to demonstrate that it has completed this activity.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration should ensure a reliable inventory of mobile service contracts is developed and maintained.

    Agency Affected: National Aeronautics and Space Administration

  30. Status: Open

    Comments: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration stated that it concurred with recommendation and planned to develop and issue guidance applicable to all NASA centers by August 17, 2016. However, as of September 2, 2016, the agency has not provided evidence that it has issued the guidance. We will continue to monitor the agency's efforts to implement the recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established agency-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: National Aeronautics and Space Administration

  31. Status: Open

    Comments: The Social Security Administration (SSA) described steps it is taking to address our recommendation. Specifically, in July 2016, the agency reported that it has deployed and is operating a Mobile Expense Management System that will be used to maintain an enterprise-wide inventory of mobile devices and associated services once all the agency's mobile service contracts/accounts have been successfully consolidated onto one of the agency's blanket purchasing agreements. SSA expects to complete this consolidation in the September to October 2016 timeframe. We will continue to monitor its progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration should ensure a complete inventory of mobile devices and associated services is established.

    Agency Affected: Social Security Administration

  32. Status: Open

    Comments: The Social Security Administration (SSA) described steps it is taking to address this recommendation. Specifically, in July 2016, the agency reported that representatives from various agency components were working to develop and document the policies, guidelines, processes, and procedures to effectively implement an enterprise model for mobile provisioning and management. SSA expects to complete this effort in fiscal year 2017. We will continue to monitor its progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the agency effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established agency-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Social Security Administration

  33. Status: Open

    Comments: The Department of Treasury has yet to implement this recommendation. In May 2016, the Department reported that it had awarded two contracts to facilitate mobile device management, and had advised its Bureaus to track, analyze, and manage mobile device utilization and cost in accordance with GAO guidance at their level until migration to the Department-wide contracts is complete. Nevertheless, the Department still needs to establish Department-wide procedures to monitor and control spending on mobile devices and services. We will continue to monitor the Department's progress in implementing this recommendation.

    Recommendation: To help the department effectively manage spending on mobile devices and services, the Secretary of the Treasury should ensure procedures to monitor and control spending are established department-wide. Specifically, ensure that (1) procedures include assessing devices for zero, under, and over usage; (2) personnel with authority and responsibility for performing the procedures are identified; and (3) the specific steps to be taken to perform the process are documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of the Treasury

  34. Status: Open

    Comments: The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has made progress in implementing this recommendation by requiring agencies to track savings. Specifically, in August 2016, OMB issued a policy requiring covered agencies to appoint, by November 2016, a dedicated lead for mobile devices and services. The official is expected to work closely with senior agency officials to establish and maintain an agency-wide inventory of mobile contracts, identify opportunities for contract consolidation, and track savings, among other things. In addition, according to an official in OMB's Office of Federal Procurement, a team led by OMB, the General Services Administration, and the departments of Defense and Homeland Security, is to develop an approach for measuring savings related to mobile devices and services.

    Recommendation: To better enable OMB to oversee agency efforts to consolidate mobile telecommunications contracts, the Director should measure and report progress in achieving its goal of cost savings through consolidation, as described in the 2012 Digital Government Strategy.

    Agency Affected: Executive Office of the President: Office of Management and Budget

 

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