Managing in the New Millennium:

Shaping a More Efficient and Effective Government for the 21st Century

T-OCG-00-9: Published: Mar 29, 2000. Publicly Released: Mar 29, 2000.

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Nancy R. Kingsbury
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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO discussed the actions needed to make the federal government more efficient and effective for the 21st Century.

GAO noted that: (1) the fiscal pressures associated with maintaining and managing the surplus have increased the need for more efficient and effective government and will continue to require difficult choices; (2) government performance and accountability need to be enhanced in order to get the most out of available resources, and forge effective approaches to both the newly emerging and long-standing problems facing the nation; (3) the reforms that have been adopted have profound implications for what government does (the products and services it delivers), how it is organized, and how it performs; (4) yet, the reforms did not encompass all areas of government management, in particular human capital strategic planning and management at a governmentwide level; (5) to meet the challenges of the 21st century, the federal government will need to: (a) possess the effective management approaches and tools needed to develop and maintain high-performing organizations; (b) implement the human capital practices needed to support a focus on performance management and economy, efficiency, and effectiveness; and (c) implement modern approaches for more efficient and effective delivery of government services; (6) Congress has an important role in encouraging the implementation of the legislative framework already enacted to strengthen government performance and in creating new supportive legislation and governance mechanisms; (7) decisions also have to be made about the role of government--what government should do and how best to manage within continued fiscal restraint; and (8) GAO will continue to assist this transition through assessing agencies' progress and identifying opportunities to strengthen government accountability and performance.

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