Message from GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini to Staff
January 15, 2015
After nearly three years of working together, I will be leaving GSA on February 13. It has been my highest honor to serve the American people, our President, and this Administration. I want everyone in this agency to know that it has been a pleasure to do such important work with committed public servants such as you.
The women and men of GSA are at the forefront of transforming how the federal government works: introducing new technologies, smarter acquisition platforms, and innovative workspace. Working together we found ways to leverage unused assets and began using data driven decision making processes to help better serve our agency partners and the American people. For example, we launched a comprehensive modernization of land ports of entry that will improve the safety and efficiency of our vital border crossings. We kicked off an effort to build a more transparent and cost-effective acquisition environment through our Consolidate Acquisition Platform. And in communities throughout the country, we have made getting services from the federal government far easier through the efforts of OCSIT and 18F. We have made a real difference and I want thank all of you for making that possible.
As the President finalizes his decision on the next Administrator of GSA, I know that you will be in good hands as Deputy Administrator Denise Turner Roth assumes the responsibility of Acting Administrator. Denise has spent almost two decades working in public service, in places ranging from Capitol Hill; to Greensboro, North Carolina; to right here at GSA. Since Denise joined us in March of last year, she has done an outstanding job, working closely with the team and taking ownership of a number of our most important and complex issues. I have every confidence that, with the same support you’ve shown me, she will be able to continue our progress.
Much has changed at GSA since I arrived here in April of 2012 as a result of your hard work. Today, GSA is stronger, more efficient, and better able to serve our partner agencies and the American people. I am proud to have played some role in these changes, but I am honored to have had the opportunity to serve alongside all of you. The women and men of GSA are among the most dedicated, hard working public servants I have ever had the pleasure to meet. You are a credit to this agency and our country. I cannot thank you enough for the support and friendship you have shown me.
Under Tangherlini’s leadership, the General Services Administration made significant strides in increasing efficiency and savings throughout the agency and the federal government . Here’s a glimpse at key transformation initiatives that have taken place over the past two years.
Under Administrator Tangherlini’s leadership, the women and men of GSA have worked tirelessly to restore the trust of the American people and provide them with the highest level of service.
Administrator Tangherlini has been focused on ensuring that GSA was getting the maximum value for its partner agencies. This is why GSA began using data driven decision making processes throughout the agency. At the same time,the agency instituted performance metrics throughout the agency, as well as improved performance reviews, to provide greater accountability at GSA.
Early in 2013, GSA developed a new mission statement, along with six priorities, that capture who GSA is and what it does. It reflects input and ideas from employees at every level of GSA and demonstrates why, in the current budget climate, GSA’s work is more important than ever.
One of Administrator Tangherlini’s first actions was to begin a top to bottom review of the entire agency that examined every aspect of how GSA operates. This led to a series of common sense internal reforms that have enabled GSA to achieve significant savings almost immediately. We were able to engage in a consolidation and streamlining of administrative functions that has not just eliminated duplication of functions, but also created a more efficient agency. Thanks to these efforts, GSA is on track to reduce our financial management and IT functions by more than 25% this year compared to 2012. GSA also created a hiring approval process that has lead to a 9.1% decrease in full time employees since April 2012
As a result of that top to bottom review, GSA saved $28 million dollars by revising internal travel and conference policies. There has been a 68% decrease in travel since FY2010.
Strengthening the Nation’s Infrastructure
Public Private Partnerships
GSA is actively exploring new approaches to leverage the value of our older, outdated buildings to get new, highly efficient space for our partner agencies. Across the country, we have put in motion several potential exchange projects, including the J. Edgar Hoover building in Washington, D.C., the John A. Volpe Building in Massachusetts, and the Moffett Federal Airfield in California.
GSA is creating a 21st century workplace across government to save money and increase productivity. GSA’s Total Workplace initiative provides resources and expertise to encourage federal agencies to reduce their office space, foster collaboration, better manage IT spending, and increase energy efficiency. We anticipate this will save more than $73 million in taxpayer dollars for all four agencies who are already participating in this program.
Using the principles of Total Workplace, GSA transformed its headquarters into a modern, mobile, open work environment. This transformation has enabled us to increase the number of employees who can be supported in our headquarters from 2,500 to up to 4,000. That meant we could collapse six rents into a single building, resulting in $24.4 million in savings.That represents a 26% reduction in what we were paying before.
Land Ports of Entry
GSA has worked to complete critical border crossing and inspection modernization projects in locations ranging from Van Buren, Maine to Laredo, Texas to San Ysidro, California (the busiest border crossing in the world). These improved Land Ports of Entry support both trade and enhanced security throughout our nation.
Before and during Superstorm Sandy, GSA secured some 2,100 federal facilities in the path of the storm. After the storm, GSA helped agencies secure needed supplies and services to aid impacted communities and assist agencies in getting back to work.
More Effective Acquisitions
Today, acquisition in the federal government is fragmented. In federal IT spending alone there are thousands of government contracts, duplicating spending and often paying different prices for the same item. Category management is a new approach to government acquisitions that examines the entire spend of the federal government and organizing the spending into product or service categories, such as IT Hardware, Office Supplies or Professional Services. It will manage each of those categories as a strategic business unit so we can better meet the government’s needs by connecting industry with buyers in a truly collaborative way.
Common Acquisition Platform
GSA kicked off CAP, a shared service that supports category management, providing a single organized platform to facilitate all levels of government to access tools and expertise to enable data-driven buying decisions. This technology platform and strategy will help deliver the benefits of category management and it will guide buyers through every step of the full acquisition process.
The Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative for Office Supplies Third Generation (FSSI OS3) is GSA’s latest FSSI solution for office supplies. Strategic sourcing leverages the purchasing power of the entire federal government, reducing costs of goods and services and allowing for better service. Under OS3 prices decrease as the collective purchases grow across the federal government. This vehicle is expected to provide more than $90 million in annual savings captured through lower prices. The awards are the result of a collaborative team effort among customer agencies across the federal government.
In partnership with multiple federal agencies, GSA has secured governmentwide wireless blanket purchase agreements with an estimated savings to taxpayers of $300 million by 2018. The FSSI Wireless BPAs allow government entities to better manage wireless spending by consolidating service plans to maximize value and savings. Under these new agreements, agencies can pool minutes, order plans and devices more efficiently, and have greater transparency into their purchases.
Better Digital Services
GSA’s newly launched 18F brings together a team of experts and innovators to make government’s digital services more efficient and effective. Recruited from throughout the private and public sectors, these women and men will collaborate with federal agencies and help them improve their digital service delivery. By using lessons from the nation’s top startups and innovative companies, these public servants provide cutting-edge support for GSA’s federal partners that reduces cost and improves service.