Information Technology: Investment Oversight and Management Have Improved but Continued Attention Is Needed

GAO-11-454T Published: Mar 17, 2011. Publicly Released: Mar 17, 2011.
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The federal government anticipates spending $79 billion on information technology (IT) in fiscal year 2011. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) plays a key role in overseeing the implementation and management of federal IT investments. Given the size of these investments and their importance to the health, economy, and security of the nation, it is critical for OMB and federal agencies to provide appropriate program oversight and ensure adequate transparency. Over the past several years, GAO has issued a number of reports and testimonies on OMB's initiatives to highlight troubled projects, justify IT investments, and use project management tools. Partly in response to this prior work, in 2009 OMB deployed a public Web site--known as the IT Dashboard--that provides detailed information on approximately 800 major federal IT investments, including assessments of these investments' performance against cost and schedule targets (referred to as ratings). GAO was asked to testify on OMB's key efforts to improve the oversight and management of federal IT investments through the use of the Dashboard and other efforts. To prepare this statement, GAO drew on previously published work on IT investments, including OMB's Dashboard, agencies' oversight boards, and agencies' use of project management tools.

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