At the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) we are using this tool to reach out to our stakeholders in a new way. We want to hear from you about how we can better serve you, whether you’re a member of the general public, an advocate for good government, or an employee of OPM or another agency. Please comment here on our Open Government Plan and help us with new, concrete ideas on how to make OPM better. Please visit us here and at http://www.opm.gov/open often.
OPM welcomes comments and questions from the public. We respect the principle that people are entitled
to different opinions and hope to foster conversation within our online presence. To that end, we do not premoderate users' comments on our website or social media pages. This means that users' comments are
automatically published, but they may be removed by an OPM official if the comment:
In addition, OPM may remove content, including comments, that has become stale. We also reserve the right
to remove multiple successive off-topic posts by a single user, repetitive posts copied and pasted by multiple
users, spam, or chain mail.
Note that the views expressed on this page, the appearance of external links posted by individuals on this
page, and following, liking, or reposting of posts or tweets does not constitute official endorsement on behalf
of the Office of Personnel Management or the Federal Government. OPM is not liable for any loss or damage
resulting from any comments posted on this page. This forum may not be used for the submission of any
claim, demand, complaint, legal and/or administrative notice or process, or for the exhaustion of any legal
and/or administrative remedy.
You Have Questions…We Have Answers
We have created a searchable Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) site designed to make finding and sharing information more efficient for our employees, external stakeholders and you, the general public.
The searchable FAQs are available at www.opm.gov/FAQs and contain information across all program areas. You can search for information using common language (e.g., What is Open Government?) or browse by topic (e.g., Senior Executive Service). Answers to your questions are displayed immediately and a list of the Top10 Questions is also available for review. Many questions can be answered right away with FAQs. Why wait in line on the phone? Go online today. Ready, set, search!!!
On October 13, 2010, President Obama signed the Plain Writing Act into law. This Act requires all Federal agencies to write most documents in plain language and requires all new covered documents to be written in plain language beginning October 13th.
As you know, plain language is communicating with your audience so they understand what you're saying the first time they read or hear it. It's worth remembering that language that is "plain" to one set of readers may not be plain to others. So keeping in mind who your audience is will help immeasurably.
Written material is in plain language if your audience can easily:
What kind of documents should be written in plain language? Any document that (1) is necessary for obtaining any Federal Government benefit or service or filing taxes, (2) provides information about any Federal Government benefit or service, or (3) explains to the public how to comply with a requirement the Federal Government administers or enforces. This includes (whether in paper or electronic form) a letter, publication, form, notice, or instruction and does not include regulations.
Want to learn more? Online plain language training is available from the National Institutes of Health at plainlanguage.nih.gov/CBTs/PlainLanguage/login.asp. You don’t have to login, just click Browse to get started.
If you have any questions, please visit our Plain Language site or feel free to leave us a comment here.
IT is a critical component of OPM’s ability to supply the Federal Government with the most talented, highest performing workforce available. We maintain important websites such as USAJobs.com, administer benefits for millions of federal employees, and provide critical HR support for every federal agency. Each of these tasks is information intensive, thus OPM’s implementation of the 25 Point Implementation Plan to Reform Federal IT Management. My staff and I are working tirelessly to implement these important reforms.
OPM has a unique role in the larger IT Reform agenda in our creation of an IT Program Management career path. Over the past six months we have worked on a tight time frame to establish this new career track for our high-performing program managers. We have published the classification title for IT program managers, researched the need for direct hire authority for IT program managers, and are in the process of developing an IT program manager competency model. As CIO, I am extremely proud of the work that my team has accomplished in this initiative and feel that this new career track will have a dramatic affect on the performance of IT programs across the Federal Government for the foreseeable future.
A major goal of our agency is to move more processes to shared services or cloud platforms. This centralization will lead to both cost savings and improved performance. We have already begun to move the majority of our web services, including OPM.gov, to cloud-based platforms. We are also moving our document management to the cloud, which will allow OPM employees to share information much more efficiently. We expect that these changes alone will save the agency over $200k per year. This “Cloud First” philosophy is central to our department’s strategic plan for federal IT which includes our goal to reduce our Operations and Management expenditures by 10% per year over the next three years.
We held our first departmental Tech Stat session on March 30th, where we evaluated our Health Claims Data Warehouse. We identified several key management and communications issues that needed to be addressed in order to ensure the system’s continued success. We established a plan for improved governance of the program by establishing stronger communication channels between key stakeholders and with the Executive Steering Committee. Further, we expect to avoid significant future costs as a result of these improvements. As we go forward, the TechStat process will continue to be a vital component of our IT Management plan.
As we continue to implementation the IT Reform plan, I am encouraged by the remarkable progress I see here at OPM and across the entire government. This progress and the resulting best practices are both positive signs for the future of IT Reform. While there are challenges ahead, the ambitious goals set forth both in the plan and by our agency will push us to achieve results as we work to recruit the next generation of talented, dynamic federal employees.
Matthew E. Perry is the Chief Information Officer at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.
Director John Berry proclaimed in his letter introducing OPM’s Open Government Plan: “We are very excited about engaging further with our stakeholders – employees, unions, the public, academia, other agencies, and non-profit organizations – to create a more transparent, participatory, and collaborative Government.”
It has been one year since the White House released the Open Government Directive, part of a larger initiative to improve Government services through transparency, public participation and collaborations. Through OPM’s Open Government Plan, we have honored the commitment to our stakeholders by making more information available to and usable by the public. We are engaging OPM employees, along with external stakeholders, in more collaborative and transparent ways to solve complex, agency-wide dilemmas through clearly defining the problem, generating creative ideas, and recommending new solutions to the OPM Executive Board.
Here are some of the highlights we have accomplished thus far:
We are moving forward with implementing the rest of OPM’s Open Government Plan by focusing on ways in which we can build a culture that truly values openness - collaboration, participation and transparency - and learn how it can help us better do our jobs and fulfill our mission to recruit, retain, and honor a world-class workforce to serve the American people.
Visit the Open OPM blog at http://www.opm.gov/blogs/openopm/index.aspx for the latest Open Government news and events.
Sunshine Week is “a national initiative to promote a dialogue about the importance of open government and freedom of information.” OPM has taken the challenge of Open Government and committed itself to becoming a model of openness and transparency. Director John Berry noted in his letter introducing our Open Government Plan, at the United States Office of Personnel Management “We are very excited about engaging further with our stakeholders – employees, unions, the public, academia, other agencies, and non-profit organizations – to create a more transparent, participatory, and collaborative Government”.
The notion of Openness is built in to our strategic plan and our organizational values, which link directly to our mission: “Recruit, Retain and Honor a World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People.” FY10 saw OPM make good progress in creating an environment of “openness”, by making improvements toward proactive disclosure, and effectively responding to FOIA requests. You can read more in our 2010 Freedom of Information Act Report.
Below is a special invite for you to attend the Open Government Summit hosted by OPM on February 18, 2011 in Room 1350. We will kick off the session at 8:30 a.m. and the remainder of the morning will include breakout sessions with various folks across OPM, other agencies and private sector. We hope to share information about the OPM Open Government effort as well as learn best practices from other agencies and some external stakeholders. We have limited seating in Room 1350 so please respond to the invite below as soon as possible.
Look forward to seeing you at the session.
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If you would like to learn more about the OpenOPM initiative, visit www.opm.gov/open.
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