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Cultural Change Management and Providing Efficient and Effective Citizen Services: USDA Case Study Chris Niedermayer Associate Chief Information Officer for eGovernment October 13, 2004. Integrated, Enterprise Systems. Meeting Citizen Expectations.

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Cultural Change Management and

Providing Efficient and Effective Citizen Services:

USDA Case Study

Chris Niedermayer

Associate Chief Information Officer

for eGovernment

October 13, 2004

meeting citizen expectations

Integrated, Enterprise Systems

Meeting Citizen Expectations

From many, uncoordinated services and multiple points of access ...

To single points of access to unified services and functionality

  • Farm Assistance
    • RD
    • FSA
  • Trade Assistance
  • Nutrition Programs
  • Marketing Programs
  • Education
  • Research
  • Recreation
    • Forest Service
    • Interior
  • Conservation
    • NRCS
    • Forest Service
  • Food Safety
    • FSIS
    • FDA
    • APHIS
    • CDC
  • Rural Development
  • Farm Assistance
  • Trade Assistance
  • Nutrition Programs
  • Marketing Programs
  • Education
  • Research
  • Recreation
  • Conservation
  • Food Safety
  • Rural Development



challenges at usda
Challenges at USDA
  • USDA consists of 29 semi-independent agencies and staff offices
  • USDA agencies:
    • Collectively, have one of the most diverse mission delivery mandates in the Federal Government
    • Have traditionally developed and delivered services independently
    • Occupy virtually every space along the maturity curve
    • Serve a vast group of citizens, businesses, and other government entities worldwide

USDA Participates in 21 of President’s the 24 Cross-Government Initiatives

Transaction Integration Initiatives

Process Integration Initiatives

  • Business Gateway*
  • eClearance*
  • eLoans*
  • eVital
  • Expanding Electronics Products for Tax for Business
  • International Trade Process Streamlining*
  • GovBenefits*
  • Recruitment One-Stop*
  • Disaster Management*
  • eRulemaking*
  • Federal Asset Sales*
  • Integrated Acquisition Environment*
  • Recreation One-Stop*

Standards Adoption Initiatives

Consolidation Initiatives

  • Consolidated Health Informatics
  • Electronic HR Integration*
  • eRecords Management*
  • Geospatial One-Stop*
  • eAuthentication*
  • ePayroll*
  • eTraining*
  • eTravel*
  • USA Services*

* USDA active participant in these initiatives.

what is required to meet citizen expectations
What is Required To Meet Citizen Expectations?
  • Change in the way Agencies Develop and Deliver Services
    • Both internally and externally
    • Collaborative and blended ventures vs. single agency approaches
    • It’s 90% change management and 10% technology
    • Leverage funding streams to support improvements across the enterprise
  • Empowerment of Employees
    • New skills
    • Incentives for working in teams
    • Focus on results

These Requirements for Success Go Against Everything Most of the Federal Government Currently Does and are Difficult to Achieve

sample strategic initiative grants and grants management solution
Sample Strategic Initiative: Grants and Grants Management Solution

Current Grants System

Future Grants and Grants Management System

Presidential Initiative: Common front-end for applications and grant servicing functions

Grant Applicant

Grant Applicant

Largely Paper-Based Process

Presidential InitiativeeGrants Portal





XML Data Transfer














USDA Initiative: Common back-end to manage grant services

Multiple and incompatible Back-end Systems





USDA Grants System

usda investments organized to avoid unnecessary duplication complexity and costs
USDA Investments Organized to Avoid Unnecessary Duplication, Complexity, and Costs

From 29 agency-specific systems serving single-agency or single-office needs ...

To single, enterprise systems serving multiple agency needs

  • Integrated
  • Coordinated
  • Standardized
  • 29 Separate Front Ends
  • 29 Separate Back End
  • X29 Number of Systems
components of a successful transformation effort





Components of a Successful Transformation Effort

Four Interrelated Components of Transformation

Standards, procedures, regulations, management approaches, and processes through which the organization’s mission is carried out.

Processes for encouraging management involvement, stakeholder participation, organizational learning, and customer orientation.

Technology forecasting, technical requirements gathering and specification, current systems assessment, impact and technical risk assessment, and acquisition.

Allocation of human and financial resources to achieve stated outcomes.

key elements to consider
Key Elements to Consider
  • Establish a Framework for Change
    • Understand who your customers are, which parts of your organization serves them, and their expectations
    • Governance
      • Build a good team
      • Define specific roles and responsibilities
      • Hold people accountable for results
    • Integrate transformation concepts with traditional business and IT processes
      • Strategic business planning
      • Agency tactical plans
      • Capital Planning and Investment Control
      • Enterprise Architecture
key elements to consider continued
Key Elements to Consider, continued
  • Acquire Senior Management Support
  • Communication
    • Create a vision and plan for achieving change
      • Gameboard
      • Strategic Plan
    • Develop and implement a communications plan
    • Establish standard meeting times for participants
    • Best practices, lessons learned
    • Awards and incentives
key elements to consider continued11
Key Elements to Consider, continued
  • Demand and Nurture Progress
    • Establish aggressive schedule
    • Maintain momentum
    • Create standards process, templates, collaboration tools
    • Identify interdependencies
    • Facilitate enterprise wide involvement
    • Invest in detailed planning, analysis, and customer support
    • Realign competencies to support the new business model
our results so far
Our Results So Far…
  • Consolidated USDA disaster relief information with similar information from agencies across the Federal Government so that citizens and businesses may search for assistance from across the Government in one place (
  • Provided new levels of assistance to exporters by consolidating USDA’s export-related assistance and market information with similar information from our partners in the Federal and private sector (
  • Expanded opportunities for citizens and businesses to participate in the Federal regulatory process by working with our Federal partners to provide a single point of access to all Federal regulatory material (
our results so far continued
Our Results So Far…, continued
  • Scientists and the academic community now have access to a wide range of authoritative scientific information from sources across the Federal Government (
  • Streamlined the process of locating grant opportunities and applying for grants by working with our Federal partners to deploy a single access point for over 900 grant programs across the Federal Government (
  • Participating in a geospatial data sharing initiative with our Federal and State partners to improve the Government’s ability to respond to natural disasters and homeland security events ( ?).
  • Helped citizens determine their eligibility for USDA benefits by incorporating pre-eligibility surveys onto a common government-wide Web site (
our results so far continued14
Our Results So Far…, continued
  • Simplified citizen’s access to government recreational facilities through its leadership in developing Recreation.Gov—the government’s online service that provides a single point of access to accurate information about Federal recreation destinations and reservations.
  • Simplified citizen and business access to the government’s forms by consolidating USDA’s electronic forms in a single location (
  • Simplifying employees access to travel services and reducing costs by selecting a single electronic travel system for USDA.
  • Reorganized USDA’s principal Web site to present the Department’s information and services by topic rather than on an organizational basis (
our results so far continued15
Our Results So Far…, continued
  • Implemented a common electronic authentication service that permits individuals to use a single credential (user name and password) to conduct electronic transactions across USDA, and soon, across the Federal Government.
  • Provided our employees with expanded development opportunities by deploying AgLearn, an enterprise-wide learning management system (
  • Brought farmers and ranchers unprecedented access to information about their transactions with two of the principal agencies that serve them by deploying an online customer statement.

Chris Niedermayer

Telephone: (202) 690-2118