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GSA Implements Cost Saving Ideas, Saves Over $5 Million

August 22, 2012

Input gathered from agency employees saves millions

WASHINGTON — Today, the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) announced plans to implement five cost savings ideas that will save the agency an estimated $5.53 million. As part of its ongoing top- to-bottom review, GSA launched The Great Ideas Hunt asking its employees to share their best ideas on how to improve the performance and efficiency of the agency.

“When we began our Top-to-Bottom review of the entire agency, we wanted to look for ways to engage employees in a meaningful way about how to improve the agency and make it more efficient,” said Acting Administrator Dan Tangherlini. “The Great Ideas Hunt originated from there, and I am impressed with the quality of responses received from GSA employees across the country.”

To date, GSA received a total of 632 ideas submitted via the web from employees across the country. GSA staff then voted for their favorite submissions, registering close to twenty thousand votes online. The agency is now taking action on five of the most popular ideas, which are currently being implemented.

These include:

-Reduce Subscriptions: A GSA employee highlighted the fact that GSA can save money by
reducing the number of newspaper and magazine subscriptions and choosing online versions
when possible. By doing this the GSA can save up to $630,000 agency-wide.

-Eliminate Redundant Survey: Three suggestions were submitted urging the agency to retire
a costly and redundant employee survey. It turns out that the survey costs $1 million annually
and virtually all of its questions are addressed in the Office of Personnel Management Employee
Viewpoint Survey, which is free. GSA has now stopped its use of the survey.

-Create Web-based Surveys: Four GSA employees submitted an idea to replace the paper-
based Public Buildings Service (PBS) Tenant Satisfaction Survey with a web-based solution
instead. PBS is making this change immediately, which will save about $1.2 million annually.

-Expand PrintWise policy: Two entries noted that setting the default printing settings to ‘double-
sided’ will save money on paper and reduce GSA’s impact on the environment. As a result, GSA
will roll out this policy agency-wide, and could realize a savings of $2.7 million.

-Implement External Great Ideas: GSA received so many helpful ideas through this campaign
internally, that three employees suggested the agency create an external website to allow federal
partners and vendors to share ideas and feedback on how GSA can better manage our offerings.

The Great Ideas Hunt began May 31 and ended July 6. In addition to these five ideas, the agency is reviewing and researching 40 other ideas submitted through the program, and expects to implement them on a rolling basis.

Last Reviewed: 2019-04-24