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GSA'S Government Performance and Results Act strategic Plan

 

STATEMENT OF DENNIS J. FISCHER
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER


GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION
BEFORE THE
SUBCOMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT MANAGEMENT, INFORMATION AND TECHNOLOGY
COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT REFORM AND OVERSIGHT
UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

OCTOBER 8, 1997

 

MR. CHAIRMAN, WE APPRECIATE THE OPPORTUNITY TO DISCUSS OUR STRATEGIC PLAN WITH YOU THIS AFTERNOON. WE HAVE FOUND THE DISCUSSIONS WITH YOUR STAFF AND THOSE OF OTHER CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEES TO BE INVALUABLE IN EXAMINING OUR LEGISLATIVE RESPONSIBILITIES AND TRANSLATING THEM INTO A MISSION STATEMENT THAT CAPTURES WHAT THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION (GSA) DOES, ITS RELATIONSHIPS WITH ITS DIRECT CUSTOMERS (FEDERAL AGENCIES), AND THE BENEFIT IT PROVIDES TO THE ULTIMATE CUSTOMER OF GOVERNMENT SERVICE, THE AMERICAN TAXPAYER.

FOR THE MOST PART, GSA DOES NOT PROVIDE SERVICE DIRECTLY TO THE CITIZENS. WE DO, HOWEVER, CREATE A TANGIBLE BENEFIT BY PROVIDING THE WORKPLACE INFRASTRUCTURE, POLICIES AND PROCEDURES NEEDED BY FEDERAL AGENCIES TO ENABLE AGENCIES TO OPERATE WITH MAXIMUM ECONOMY AND EFFICIENCY. THE BETTER WE ARE AT DOING OUR JOB, THE BETTER THEY CAN BE AT SERVING THEIR CUSTOMERS.
OUR MISSION:
WE PROVIDE EXPERTLY MANAGED SPACE,
PRODUCTS, SERVICES AND SOLUTIONS,
AT THE BEST VALUE, AND POLICY LEADERSHIP,
TO ENABLE FEDERAL EMPLOYEES TO
ACCOMPLISH THEIR MISSIONS.

TO FULFILL THIS MISSION, WE HAVE FOCUSED ON FOUR MAJOR GOALS.
SOME MAY ARGUE THAT SOME OF THE GOALS ARE REALLY STRATEGIES, NOT GOALS IN AND OF THEMSELVES. WHAT IS IMPORTANT IS NOT SEMANTICS BUT THAT FEDERAL AGENCIES UNFLINCHINGLY ADDRESS THOSE GOALS, OBJECTIVES, STRATEGIES, ISSUES, OR CONCERNS THAT ARE CENTRAL TO RETURNING TRUE VALUE TO THE TAXPAYERS. WE BELIEVE THAT THESE FOUR GOALS ARE CRITICALLY IMPORTANT TO ACHIEVING GSA'S MISSION. IF WE DO NOT DIRECT OUR EFFORTS TOWARD ACHIEVING ALL FOUR OF THESE GOALS, WE WILL FAIL TO MEET YOUR EXPECTATIONS AND OUR OWN.

GOAL 1: PROMOTE RESPONSIBLE ASSET MANAGEMENT. WE ARE DIRECTLY RESPONSIBLE FOR MANY SIGNIFICANT FEDERAL ASSETS. WE MUST SAFEGUARD THESE ASSETS AND ENSURE THAT WE OBTAIN THE BEST RETURN POSSIBLE ON THE FEDERAL INVESTMENT. WE WILL PRESERVE THE ASSETS UNDER OUR CARE FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS, OR DISPOSE OF PARTICULAR ASSETS APPROPRIATELY IF THERE IS NO LONGER A FEDERAL NEED FOR THEM. WE WILL ALSO PROVIDE THE POLICIES AND BEST PRACTICES THAT OTHER AGENCIES ENTRUSTED WITH FEDERAL ASSETS SHOULD FOLLOW TO SAFEGUARD OR RECEIVE THE MAXIMUM BENEFIT FROM THE ASSETS UNDER THEIR CONTROL. THIS STEWARDSHIP RESPONSIBILITY IS TAKEN VERY SERIOUSLY AT GSA.

GOAL 2: COMPETE EFFECTIVELY IN THE FEDERAL MARKET. GSA IS FOCUSED ON PROVIDING TRUE VALUE, TO OUR DIRECT CUSTOMERS AND THOSE WHO USE OUR PROCUREMENT VEHICLES. WE ENSURE THIS BY MAKING EASILY AVAILABLE THE RIGHT PRODUCTS AND SERVICES, AT THE BEST VALUE, CONSISTENTLY. SINCE THE VAST MAJORITY OF OUR OPERATIONS ARE FUNDED DIRECTLY FROM THE SALES OF GSA PRODUCTS AND SERVICES, WE PAY ATTENTION TO OUR COSTS OF DOING BUSINESS. WE WORK HARD AT NEGOTIATING GREAT DEALS WITH OUR VENDORS FOR THE ITEMS NEEDED BY OUR CUSTOMERS. AND WE ARE CONTINUOUSLY STREAMLINING OUR OPERATIONS TO IMPROVE EFFICIENCY AND DRIVE OVERHEAD COSTS DOWN. WHEN CHANGES IN THE MARKETPLACE OR TECHNOLOGY DICTATE.CHANGES IN THE WAY WE DO BUSINESS, WE REASSESS OUR BUSINESS ACTIVITY AND MAKE THE NECESSARY CHANGES, EVEN IF IT MEANS RADICALLY REDESIGNING OR EVEN WITHDRAWING A PRODUCT OR SERVICE FROM OUR PORTFOLIO.

THE STRATEGIC PLANNING PROCESS FOCUSES FEDERAL AGENCIES ON DETERMINING THEIR PRIMARY FUNCTIONS AND DEVELOPING THOSE ACTIVITIES THAT ARE CRITICAL TO AGENCY SUCCESS. IN MANY AGENCIES THIS ASSESSMENT PROCESS HAS EXTENDED TO CONSIDERING THE TOTAL COST OF OBTAINING GOODS AND SERVICES. BY STREAMLINING THE PROCUREMENT PROCESS, GSA HAS SIMPLIFIED THE WORK REQUIRED BY AGENCY PERSONNEL TO BUY FROM GSA OFF OUR MANY GSA SCHEDULE CONTRACTS, THEREBY LOWERING THE OVERALL COST OF FEDERAL PROCUREMENT. SINCE MOST OF THE GOODS AND SERVICES PROCURED THROUGH GSA ARE PROVIDED VIA CONTRACTS WITH THE PRIVATE SECTOR, REDUCING THE IN-HOUSE AGENCY PROCESSING COST OF A PROCUREMENT MEANS LESS WASTE OF FEDERAL DOLLARS AND MORE MONEY AVAILABLE TO BUY THE GOODS AND SERVICES NEEDED TO ACCOMPLISH AGENCY PROGRAM INITIATIVES.

GOAL 3: EXCEL AT CUSTOMER SERVICE. IN ADDITION TO HELPING FEDERAL AGENCIES SAVE MONEY, WE MUST SATISFY CUSTOMERS WITH EXCELLENT CUSTOMER SUPPORT AND APPROPRIATE POLICIES. IN OTHER WORDS, WE MUST THRILL OUR CUSTOMERS. IF WE DON'T, THEY WILL SHOP ELSEWHERE, EVEN PAYING HIGHER PRICES TO GET THE VALUE THEY DEMAND IN EXCHANGE FOR THEIR BUDGETARY RESOURCES.

OUR EMPLOYEES UNDERSTAND THE ABSOLUTE IMPERATIVE OF GREAT CUSTOMER SERVICE AND REFLECT THEIR UNDERSTANDING IN THEIR DAILY DECISIONS AND INTERACTIONS WITH CUSTOMERS. BASED ON THE RESPONSES WE HAVE RECEIVED FROM THE CUSTOMERS WHO HAVE REVIEWED OUR DRAFT STRATEGIC PLAN, THEY LIKE KNOWING THAT WE ARE FOCUSED ON THEM AND THEIR NEEDS AND EXPECTATIONS. THIS COMMITMENT IS NO LONGER JUST WORDS SPOKEN ACROSS A TABLE OR FROM A PODIUM-IT IS IN WRITING, AND OUR CREDIBILITY RESTS ON THIS PROMISE.

GOAL 4: ANTICIPATE FUTURE WORKFORCE NEEDS. THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT THAT EXISTED WHEN GSA WAS ESTABLISHED IN 1949 IS NOT THE ONE WE SERVE TODAY. THE RATE OF CHANGE IN THE FEDERAL WORKPLACE AND THE FEDERAL WORKFORCE WILL CONTINUE, EVEN ESCALATE. THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HAS TO LEARN TO ANTICIPATE THESE CHANGES AND PREPARE FOR THEM. WE NEED TO DEVELOP WINNING STRATEGIES TO HELP THE FEDERAL COMMUNITY TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE COMING CHANGES. LOOKING INTO THE FUTURE ISN'T EASY OR COMFORTABLE. BUT FEDERAL AGENCIES CANNOT CONTINUE STEERING THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT BY LOOKING IN THE REARVIEW MIRROR. GSA RECOGNIZES WE NEED TO STOP LOOKING TO THE PAST FOR OUR SOLUTIONS. WE MUST QUESTION, PREDICT, PLAN FOR AND CREATE A MORE EFFECTIVE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.

LOOKING TO THE FUTURE WILL ALSO BENEFIT SOCIETY IN GENERAL. GIVEN THE WIDE DIVERSITY OF PROGRAMS, LOCATIONS, EMPLOYEES AND CLIENTS, THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OFTEN MUST TAKE THE LEAD IN MAKING NEW TECHNOLOGY WORK IN THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT. BY EXAMINING WHAT THE FUTURE FEDERAL WORK ENVIRONMENT WILL LOOK LIKE, WE CAN PROVIDE A BENEFIT FOR ALL AMERICAN WORKERS AND EMPLOYERS. IF WE CAN MAKE THE SHIFT TO THE WORKPLACE OF THE FUTURE SMOOTHLY, WE WILL HAVE DEVELOPED A NATIONAL CORPORATE ADVANTAGE IN THE GLOBAL MARKETPLACE.

IN CLOSING, WE WOULD LIKE TO THANK THE CONGRESSIONAL MEMBERS AND STAFF, AND THE REPRESENTATIVES FROM OMB, GAO AND OTHER FEDERAL AGENCIES WHO HAVE REVIEWED OUR STRATEGIC PLAN AND PROVIDED US COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS. THE GSA STRATEGIC PLAN IS A DOCUMENT THAT WE WANT PEOPLE TO READ WILLINGLY AND UNDERSTAND QUICKLY. WE WANT THEM TO FOCUS ON OUR GOALS AND APPRECIATE WHY THESE GOALS ARE CRITICAL TO ASSESSING OUR PROGRESS. FOR THESE REASONS, WE HAVE WORKED TO CREATE A PLAN THAT IS SIMPLE AND SHORT. WE RECOGNIZE THAT WE CAN ALWAYS EXPAND OUR DISCUSSION OF A PARTICULAR POINT TO IMPROVE CLARITY AND PROVIDE ADDITIONAL EXAMPLES. WE NEED TO HAVE OUR PLAN READ AND UNDERSTOOD.

THEREFORE, WE ACCEPT THAT WE COULD HAVE ADDED MORE DETAIL TO THE PLAN. NEVERTHELESS, OVER THE NEXT YEAR WE WILL BE MODIFYING OUR PLAN TO REFLECT WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED THROUGH THE PURSUIT OF OUR GOALS. WE WELCOME EVERY OPPORTUNITY TO MEET AND DISCUSS THE PLAN'S CONTENTS. STRATEGIC PLANNING WILL ONLY BE A SUCCESS IF THE PLANS ARE USED.

THANK YOU, MR. CHAIRMAN, FOR THE OPPORTUNITY TO ADDRESS YOU THIS AFTERNOON. WE WELCOME ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS YOU MAY HAVE ON OUR STRATEGIC PLAN OR OTHER MATTERS.