continuing the push against wasteful government spending. He said rooting out duplicative systems and processes and consolidating data centers would be ongoing priorities of his office for the foreseeable future.

One approach to eliminating waste is a renewed emphasis on TechStat sessions. The sessions, which are designed to help turn around underperforming projects through technology, have generated billions of dollars in savings and cost avoidance, according to VanRoekel. But in the last year or so, he said those sessions were conducted more by agencies rather than U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) staff members.

At the start of 2012 that changed. VanRoekel said the OMB is getting more involved in the process, and he has committed to doing one TechStat session per month.

“We did a handoff to the agencies in the last year after doing OMB-led for the first stage of this, and we’re bringing back a combination of agency- and OMB-led TechStats,” VanRoekel said. “We think this combination will yield even more savings and optimizations in the way we spend and reconcile IT across the federal portfolio.”

Uncle Sam will also focus on revamping its use of mobile technology.

VanRoekel mentioned that there will be a new mobile strategy that will launch in March, which will include making the large variety of federal contracts with mobile providers more organized and efficient. He stressed that there would be an effort to use tablet devices and other mobile technology to “untether” government employees from their desks and connect them better with citizens.

Brian Heaton  | 

Brian Heaton was a writer for Government Technology magazine from 2011 to mid-2015.