Letter of Support for H.R. 4598
May 28, 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Sarah Howe
WASHINGTON–Partnership for Public Service President and CEO Max Stier released a letter of support commending Chairman Issa for introducing the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act:
Dear Chairman Issa,
On behalf of the Partnership for Public Service, I would like to commend you for your leadership in introducing the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act. This bill is an important step towards improving how the federal government purchases technology. I particularly appreciate the thought you and your staff have put into developing the acquisition workforce, which is the best way to ensure that these critical reforms are put into practice.
This legislation does an admirable job of laying the groundwork for creating strong cadres of specialized IT acquisition personnel, improving IT program management and encouraging recognition of high-performers. I believe it can also be an opportunity to take further steps to build pipelines of talent for the next generation of acquisition professionals.
First, I would encourage you to include language allowing agencies to convert high-performing interns to full-time employment. This is a cost-effective way to fill IT acquisition positions, since seeing someone perform on the job is the best way to judge whether that person is the right fit.
Further, this change will simply codify authority granted by the Pathways programs in 2010. I would also encourage you to include a provision granting agencies the ability to make selections off another’s certification list, which will speed the hiring process by giving hiring managers the opportunity to share certified candidates with another agency looking to fill a similar position rather than having to develop separate lists.
Finally, I would like to express concern about the provision requiring the president to appoint Chief Information Officers. We have seen with other similar positions the risk of these critical jobs going unfilled, leaving agencies without the stable leadership vital to implementing long-term reform. I would instead encourage you to establish a career CIO empowered to report directly to the agency head, giving them the freedom to implement the crucial reforms this legislation puts into place.
Once again, I applaud you for your work in crafting this significant proposal to improve the IT acquisition workforce. We look forward to working with you and your staff to advance it. Very best wishes.
Max Stier President and CEO”
The Partnership for Public Service works to revitalize the federal government by inspiring a new generation to serve and by transforming the way government works.