oversight

Electronic Government: Potential Exists for Enhancing Collaboration on Four Initiatives

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 2003-10-10.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

               United States General Accounting Office

GAO            Report to Congressional Committees




October 2003
               ELECTRONIC
               GOVERNMENT
               Potential Exists
               for Enhancing
               Collaboration on
               Four Initiatives




GAO-04-6
               a
                                                October 2003


                                                ELECTRONIC GOVERNMENT

                                                Potential Exists for Enhancing
Highlights of GAO-04-6, a report to the         Collaboration on Four Initiatives
Committee on Government Reform and
the Subcommittee on Technology,
Information Policy, Intergovernmental
Relations and the Census, House of
Representatives




In accordance with the President’s              All four of the e-government initiatives that GAO reviewed have made
management agenda, the Office of                progress in meeting the objectives and milestones of their early phases (the
Management and Budget has                       four initiatives, their goals, and the agencies that act as their managing
sponsored initiatives to promote                partners are shown in the table). Two of the initiatives have established Web
expansion of electronic
                                                portals—www.geodata.gov for the Geospatial One-Stop initiative and
government—the use of
information technology,                         www.BusinessLaw.gov for the Business Gateway. The projects face
particularly Web-based Internet                 additional challenging tasks, such as e-Payroll’s objective of establishing
applications, to enhance                        governmentwide payroll processing standards and Geospatial One-Stop’s
government services. Each                       goal of compiling a comprehensive inventory of geospatial data holdings.
initiative demands a high degree of
collaboration among organizations.              All four initiatives have taken steps to promote collaboration with their
For four of these initiatives, GAO              partner agencies, but none has been fully effective in involving all important
was asked to determine, among                   stakeholders. For example, for the e-Payroll initiative, the Office of
other things, their implementation              Personnel Management has taken steps to promote close collaboration with
progress and the extent of                      its four designated e-Payroll providers, but has not addressed the concerns
collaboration among agencies and
other parties involved.
                                                of a key stakeholder that will be required to make changes to its payroll
                                                processes and policies. For Geospatial One-Stop, Interior has established a
                                                board of directors with broad representation, but has not taken steps to
                                                ensure that key stakeholders at the state and local levels are involved in the
To enhance the effectiveness of                 initiative. For the Integrated Acquisition Environment initiative, the General
their efforts at collaboration and              Services Administration is using a variety of tools to promote collaboration,
help achieve the initiatives’ goals,            but has not involved partner agencies’ chief financial officers. Finally, for the
GAO is making recommendations                   Business Gateway, the Small Business Administration has not taken key
to the managing partners of the
                                                steps to facilitate effective collaboration with its partners and stakeholders,
four initiatives that address the
specific collaboration issues                   such as establishing a collaborative decision-making process and reaching
revealed by the review.                         formal agreements on partner roles and responsibilities. All four initiatives
                                                have faced short time frames to accomplish their major tasks, so that
In commenting on a draft of this                competing priorities have sometimes hindered full collaboration. However,
report, all four agencies generally             without effective collaboration on the tasks that remain to be completed,
agreed with our discussion of the               these initiatives may be at risk of not fully achieving their objectives or the
collaboration challenges facing e-              broader goals of the President’s management agenda.
government initiatives. In addition,
each of the agencies provided
                                                Four e-Government Initiatives Reviewed
additional information about
                                                    Initiative               Goal                                                Managing partner
collaboration activities associated
                                                    e-Payroll                Standardize payroll operations across all federal   Office of Personnel
with their initiatives as well as                                            agencies                                            Management
technical comments, which have                      Geospatial One-Stop      Coordinate the collection and maintenance of        Department of the
been incorporated into the final                                             geospatial data
                                                                                            a
                                                                                                                                 Interior
report where appropriate.                           Integrated Acquisition   Improve federal agencies’ acquisition of goods      General Services
                                                    Environment              and services                                        Administration
                                                    Business Gateway         Reduce the paperwork burden on small                Small Business
                                                                             businesses and help them find, understand, and      Administration
                                                                             comply with federal, state, and local laws and
                                                                             regulations
www.gao.gov/cgi-bin/getrpt?GAO-04-6.
                                                Source: GAO.

To view the full product, including the scope   a
                                                    Geospatial data are all data associated with geographic locations.
and methodology, click on the link above.
For more information, contact Linda Koontz at
(202) 512-6240 or koontzl@gao.gov.
Contents



Letter                                                                                                  1
                            Results in Brief                                                            2
                            Background                                                                  4
                            E-Government Initiatives Have Made Progress in Their Initial
                               Stages                                                                   7
                            Key Practices Facilitate Interagency Collaboration                         18
                            Initiatives Have Achieved Varying Degrees of Collaboration                 21
                            Conclusions                                                                40
                            Recommendations for Executive Action                                       41
                            Agency Comments and Our Evaluation                                         41


Appendixes
             Appendix I:    Objectives, Scope, and Methodology                                         45
             Appendix II:   Source Materials for Key Collaboration Practices                           47
                            GAO Reports                                                                47
                            Federal Agency Studies                                                     47
                            International, State, and Local Agency Studies                             49
                            Private Sector Studies                                                     50


Tables                      Table 1: Key Collaboration Practices and Their Major Elements              21
                            Table 2: e-Payroll Implementation of Key Collaboration
                                     Practices                                                         22
                            Table 3: Geospatial One-Stop Implementation of Key Collaboration
                                     Practices                                                         27
                            Table 4: Integrated Acquisition Environment Implementation of
                                     Key Collaboration Practices                                       32
                            Table 5: Business Gateway Implementation of Key Collaboration
                                     Practices                                                         36


Figures                     Figure 1: OMB Management Structure for e-Government
                                      Initiatives                                                       6
                            Figure 2: Partners and Affected Parties for the e-Payroll Initiative        8
                            Figure 3: Partners and Affected Parties for the Geospatial One-Stop
                                      Initiative                                                       10
                            Figure 4: Partners and Affected Parties for the Integrated
                                      Acquisition Environment Initiative                               13
                            Figure 5: Partners and Affected Parties for the Business Gateway
                                      Initiative                                                       16




                            Page i                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Contents




Abbreviations

CFO          Chief Financial Officer
CIO          Chief Information Officer
DFAS         Defense Finance and Accounting Service
EPA          Environmental Protection Agency
FEMA         Federal Emergency Management Agency
GIS          geographic information systems
GPEA         Government Paperwork Elimination Act
GSA          General Services Administration
IRS          Internal Revenue Service
IT           information technology
OMB          Office of Management and Budget
OPM          Office of Personnel Management
SBA          Small Business Administration
VA           Department of Veterans Affairs

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 reproduce this material separately.




Page ii                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
A
United States General Accounting Office
Washington, D.C. 20548



                                    October 10, 2003                                                                       Leter




                                    The Honorable Tom Davis
                                    Chairman, Committee on Government Reform
                                    House of Representatives

                                    The Honorable Adam H. Putnam
                                    Chairman, Subcommittee on Technology,
                                     Information Policy, Intergovernmental Relations and the Census
                                    Committee on Government Reform
                                    House of Representatives

                                    The term “electronic government” (or e-government) refers to the use of
                                    information technology (IT), particularly Web-based Internet applications,
                                    to enhance the access to and delivery of government information and
                                    service to citizens, to business partners, to employees, and among agencies
                                    at all levels of government. The President has identified the expansion of
                                    e-government as one of the five priorities of his management agenda;
                                    accordingly, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has sponsored
                                    25 initiatives to implement this agenda. This report specifically reviews the
                                    challenge of achieving effective interorganizational collaboration within
                                    4 of these 25 OMB-sponsored initiatives:

                                    • e-Payroll, an initiative to standardize payroll operations across all
                                      federal agencies;

                                    • Geospatial One-Stop, an initiative to help coordinate the collection and
                                      maintenance of geospatial data across all levels of government;1

                                    • Integrated Acquisition Environment, an initiative to create electronic
                                      tools to improve federal agencies’ acquisition of goods and services; and

                                    • Business Gateway, an initiative to reduce the paperwork burden on
                                      small businesses and help them find, understand, and comply with
                                      federal, state, and local laws and regulations.

                                    Each of these initiatives demands a high degree of interorganizational
                                    collaboration. Both e-Payroll and Integrated Acquisition Environment need
                                    to work with a broad array of federal agencies. Geospatial One-Stop

                                    1
                                     Geospatial data are any data associated with a geographic location.




                                    Page 1                                               GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                   depends on broad state and local government participation, and the
                   Business Gateway aims to serve the small business community.

                   As agreed with your office, our objectives were to review four OMB-
                   sponsored e-government initiatives and determine (1) the progress that has
                   been made to date in implementing the selected initiatives, (2) the major
                   factors that can affect successful collaboration on e-government initiatives,
                   and (3) the extent to which federal agencies and other entities have been
                   collaborating on the selected initiatives. To assess the progress of the
                   initiatives and the extent to which agencies were collaborating on them, we
                   reviewed capital asset plans, communications strategies, and other project
                   documentation; conducted interviews with project officials; and assessed
                   electronic services made available to customers to date. We identified key
                   practices affecting collaboration on e-government initiatives through a
                   review of government, academic, and private sector literature on
                   interorganizational collaboration. Details on our objectives, scope, and
                   methodology are provided in appendix I. Our work was conducted from
                   December 2002 to September 2003 in accordance with generally accepted
                   government auditing standards.



Results in Brief   The four e-government initiatives we reviewed have made progress in
                   meeting the objectives and milestones of their early phases. For example,
                   Web portals were established for two of the initiatives—www.geodata.gov
                   for the Geospatial One-Stop initiative and www.BusinessLaw.gov for the
                   Business Gateway. In addition, the Integrated Acquisition Environment
                   initiative established an online capability that federal customers can use to
                   access a variety of available interagency contracts. To continue building on
                   these early achievements, the projects need to successfully address
                   additional challenging tasks, such as those associated with e-Payroll’s
                   objective of establishing governmentwide payroll processing standards or
                   Geospatial One-Stop’s goal of compiling a comprehensive inventory of
                   geospatial data holdings. In July 2003, OMB refocused one initiative, the
                   Business Gateway, which had been making slow progress on its previous
                   objectives. OMB tied the project’s objectives and milestones more closely
                   to the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act’s2 goal of reducing the burden
                   of federal paperwork on small businesses.



                   2
                   Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002 (P.L. 107-198).




                   Page 2                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Based on a review of government, private sector, and academic research,
we identified five key broad practices that were found to have a significant
impact on collaboration across disparate organizations:

• Establishing a collaborative management structure that provides for
  shared leadership and involvement at all levels and defines roles and
  responsibilities so that each participating organization is accountable
  for the initiative’s success.

• Maintaining collaborative relationships among participants within a
  climate of trust and respect, including mechanisms for feedback and
  debate, based on formal agreements that document a shared vision for
  the project.

• Contributing resources equitably among all participants to reinforce
  the shared commitment to achieving common objectives.

• Facilitating communication and outreach that provide complete and
  timely information for all stakeholders to promote trust and reinforce
  commitment to achieving common objectives.

• Adopting a common set of standards for use by all project partners to
  provide a basis upon which otherwise independent entities can agree to
  share or integrate data or services.

While the four initiatives we reviewed have all taken steps to promote
collaboration with their partner agencies, none of the initiatives has been
fully effective in adopting these practices to fully involve important
stakeholders. For example, for the e-Payroll initiative, the Office of
Personnel Management (OPM) has taken steps to promote close
collaboration with its four designated e-Payroll providers, but it has not
addressed the concerns of one of the key stakeholders that will be required
to make changes to its payroll processes and policies. For Geospatial One-
Stop, although Interior has established a board of directors with broad
representation, it has not taken steps to ensure that a large number of the
potential stakeholders at the state and local levels are involved in the
initiative. For the Integrated Acquisition Environment initiative, the
General Services Administration (GSA) is using a variety of tools to
promote collaboration, but it has not involved partner agencies’ chief
financial officers. Finally, for the Business Gateway, the Small Business
Administration (SBA) has not taken key steps to facilitate effective
collaboration with its partners and stakeholders, such as establishing a



Page 3                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
             collaborative decision-making process and reaching formal agreements on
             partner roles and responsibilities. All four initiatives have faced short time
             frames to accomplish their major tasks, and they generally have not fully
             adopted these collaboration practices because of other competing
             priorities. However, without effective collaboration on the tasks that
             remain to be completed, these initiatives may be at risk of not fully
             achieving their objectives or the broader goals of the President’s
             management agenda.

             We are making recommendations to the managing partner agencies for
             each of the four e-government initiatives to enhance the effectiveness of
             collaboration as a tool to use in achieving their objectives.

             We received written comments on a draft of this report from the Director of
             OPM; Interior’s Assistant Secretary, Policy, Management and Budget; and
             SBA’s Program Executive Officer for e-Government. We also recieved oral
             comments from the Administrator of GSA. All four agencies generally
             agreed with our discussion of the collaboration challenges facing e-
             government initiatives. In addition, each of the agencies provided
             additional or updated information about collaboration activities associated
             with their initiatives, as well as technical comments, which have been
             incorporated into the final report where appropriate.



Background   In the context of electronic government, collaboration can be defined as a
             mutually beneficial and well-defined relationship entered into by two or
             more organizations to achieve common goals. It is an in-depth, managed
             relationship that brings together separate and distinct organizations into a
             new structure. Recent management reform efforts within the federal
             government have focused on collaboration as a way to reduce duplication
             and integrate federal provision of services to the public. Collaboration is a
             key theme of the President’s management agenda, published in 2002, which
             aims at making the federal government more focused on citizens and
             results.

             One of the key provisions of the management agenda is the expansion of
             electronic government. To implement this provision, OMB identified and is
             working on projects that address the issue of multiple federal agencies
             performing similar tasks that could be consolidated through e-government
             processes and technology. Specifically, OMB established a team, known as
             the E-Government Task Force, that analyzed the federal bureaucracy and
             identified areas of significant overlap and redundancy in how federal



             Page 4                                       GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
agencies provide services to the public. The task force found that multiple
agencies were conducting redundant operations within 30 major functions
and business lines in the executive branch. Further, each line of business
was being performed by an average of 19 agencies, and each agency was
involved in an average of 17 business lines. To address these redundancies,
the task force evaluated potential projects, focusing on collaborative
opportunities to integrate IT operations and simplify processes within lines
of business across agencies and around citizen needs. As a result of this
assessment, the task force identified a set of 25 high-profile initiatives3 to
lead the federal government’s drive toward e-government transformation
and enhanced service delivery through collaboration.

As the lead agency overseeing the management of these initiatives, OMB
developed a strategy for expanding electronic government, which it
published in February 2002.4 In its strategy, OMB established a portfolio
management structure to help oversee and guide the selected initiatives
and facilitate a collaborative working environment for each of them. This
structure includes five portfolios, each with a designated portfolio manager
reporting directly to OMB’s Associate Director for IT and E-Government.
The five portfolios are “government to citizen,” “government to business,”
“government to government,” “internal efficiency and effectiveness,” and
“cross-cutting.” Each of the 25 initiatives is assigned to one of these
portfolios, according to the type of results the initiative is intended to
provide. Further, for each initiative, OMB designated a specific agency to
be the initiative’s “managing partner,” responsible for leading the initiative,
and assigned other federal agencies as “partners” in carrying out the
initiative. Figure 1 provides an overview of the e-government management
structure established by OMB.




3
 The E-Government Task Force originally selected 23 initiatives in September 2001. A 24th,
e-Payroll, was then added by the President’s Management Council. In 2002, a decision was
made to separate one initiative into two individual projects, resulting in the current count of
25 projects.
4
 Office of Management and Budget, E-Government Strategy (Washington, D.C.: Feb. 27,
2002).




Page 5                                                 GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Figure 1: OMB Management Structure for e-Government Initiatives




                                         Note: Initiatives marked by arrows are those reviewed in this report.


                                         Successful implementation of the 25 cross-agency e-government
                                         initiatives—resulting in reductions in redundancies and overlap of federal
                                         programs and services—requires effective collaboration. Recognizing that
                                         collaboration is challenging, the President’s budget for fiscal year 2004
                                         highlighted the continuing need to establish a collaborative framework for



                                         Page 6                                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                            cross-agency e-government initiatives. In November 2002, we reported that
                            despite the importance placed on collaboration in OMB’s e-government
                            strategy, less than half of the initial business cases for the OMB-sponsored
                            initiatives addressed a strategy for successfully collaborating with other
                            government and nongovernment entities.5 Based on these results, we
                            recommended that the OMB Director ensure that managing partners of the
                            25 initiatives work with partner agencies to develop and document their
                            collaborative strategies.



E-Government                All four of the e-government initiatives that we reviewed have met
                            milestones for the early phases of their planned activities. For example,
Initiatives Have Made       Web portals were established for two of the initiatives—www.geodata.gov
Progress in Their Initial   for the Geospatial One-Stop initiative and www.BusinessLaw.gov for the
                            Business Gateway. In addition, the Integrated Acquisition Environment
Stages                      initiative established an online capability that federal customers can use to
                            access a variety of available interagency contracts. However, while the
                            projects are continuing to make progress, some of the tasks they face are
                            increasingly challenging, such as e-Payroll’s objective of establishing
                            governmentwide payroll processing standards or Geospatial One-Stop’s
                            goal of compiling a comprehensive inventory of geospatial data holdings. In
                            July 2003, OMB refocused one initiative, the Business Gateway, which had
                            been making slow progress on its previous objectives. OMB tied the
                            project’s objectives and milestones more closely to the Small Business
                            Paperwork Relief Act’s goal of reducing the burden of federal paperwork
                            on small businesses.



e-Payroll                   The goal of the e-Payroll initiative is to substantially improve federal
                            payroll operations by standardizing them across all agencies, integrating
                            them with other human resource functions, and making them easy to use
                            and cost-effective. To achieve this goal, plans are to consolidate the
                            operations of 22 existing federal payroll system providers; simplify and
                            standardize federal payroll policies and procedures; and better integrate
                            payroll, human resources, and finance functions across federal agencies.
                            OPM, the managing partner for e-Payroll, chose four agencies to be


                            5
                             U.S. General Accounting Office, Electronic Government: Selection and Implementation of
                            the Office of Management and Budget’s 24 Initiatives, GAO-03-229 (Washington, D.C.:
                            Nov. 22, 2002).




                            Page 7                                            GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
providers of payroll services to all 116 executive branch agencies. The four
selected providers are GSA and the Departments of Defense, Interior, and
Agriculture. The initiative is divided into two major phases: (1) migrating
each of the 18 nonselected payroll system providers to one of the four
selected providers by September 2004 and (2) defining an enterprise
architecture consistent with the Federal Enterprise Architecture model and
identifying technology solutions to replace legacy systems. Figure 2 shows
the partners and affected parties for the e-Payroll initiative.



Figure 2: Partners and Affected Parties for the e-Payroll Initiative


                                   Affected parties:
                     94 additional agencies, all federal employees

                     Migrating payroll providers: 18 federal agencies



                                Managing partner: OPM




Source: GAO.




Of the 22 executive branch agencies that currently operate payroll systems,
6 also provide payroll services to other agencies. The four providers
selected by OPM—GSA, Defense’s Defense Finance and Accounting
Service, Interior’s National Business Center, and Agriculture’s National
Finance Center—handle more than 70 percent of all federal civilian payroll
processing and accommodating more than 190 different pay plans.
According to OPM, many of the 22 current providers use custom-built
systems that have been in operation for many years and need to be
replaced. Two of the largest providers needing system replacement
estimated the costs of implementing new systems at $46 to $600 million per
system. Conversely, OPM estimates that consolidating current federal
payroll systems would yield savings of approximately $1.1 billion over the


Page 8                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                      next 10 years. These savings would result from reducing operating costs,
                      eliminating duplicative systems investments, and simplifying payroll
                      processing.

                      According to OPM project management documents, major phase one
                      objectives of the initiative include (1) defining governance for the initiative,
                      (2) standardizing payroll policies, (3) establishing an e-Payroll enterprise
                      architecture, and (4) overseeing consolidation of agency payroll
                      operations. The first major project deliverable—establishing governance—
                      was completed in June 2002, as scheduled. The providers have been
                      selected and a migration schedule established for nonselected agencies.
                      However, the other actions have been delayed. Standardization of policies,
                      originally scheduled for completion in June 2002, is currently ongoing. The
                      enterprise architecture planning task and the initial phase of agency
                      consolidations were both scheduled to begin in October 2002 but were not
                      initiated until January 2003. According to the project manager, these
                      schedule deviations have not led to a significant delay in the overall
                      progress of the initiative toward the goal of consolidating the 22 payroll
                      providers to 4 by September 2004. However, migrating the operations of the
                      18 nonselected providers to the selected providers, which began in
                      February 2003, could pose new challenges, because previously unidentified
                      discrepancies among agency policies may come to light.



Geospatial One-Stop   Geospatial One-Stop is intended to promote coordination of geospatial data
                      collection and maintenance across all levels of government. Geospatial
                      data—data associated with a geographic location—can be analyzed and
                      displayed through geographic information systems (GIS) to aid decision
                      makers at all levels of government. For example, the Department of Health
                      and Human Services uses GIS technology to analyze data on population
                      and topography (including roads, streams, and land elevation) in order to
                      track the spread of environmental contamination through a community.
                      Using the power of GIS to coordinate and integrate disparate kinds of
                      geospatial data can lead to better-informed decisions about public
                      investments in infrastructure and services—including national security, law
                      enforcement, health care, and the environment—as well as a more effective
                      and timely response in emergency situations. The specific objectives of the
                      Geospatial One-Stop initiative include (1) deploying an Internet portal for
                      one-stop access to geospatial data; (2) developing a set of data standards
                      for seven types of geospatial data; (3) creating an inventory of federal data
                      holdings; and (4) encouraging greater coordination among federal, state,




                      Page 9                                        GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
and local agencies about existing and planned geospatial data collection
projects.

The Department of the Interior is the managing partner agency for the
initiative. Other federal partners include the Departments of Agriculture,
Commerce, Defense, Homeland Security, and Transportation; the
Environmental Protection Agency; and the National Aeronautics and Space
Administration. Stakeholders include nonpartner federal agencies, the
International City/County Management Association, the Intertribal GIS
Council, the National Association of State Chief Information Officers, the
National States Geographic Information Council, the National Association
of Counties, the National League of Cities, and the Western Governors
Association. Figure 3 shows the partners and affected parties for the
initiative.



Figure 3: Partners and Affected Parties for the Geospatial One-Stop Initiative

                                  Affected parties: over 3000
                      counties, over 18,000 municipalities, and 50 states
                                         Stakeholders:
                    nonpartner federal agencies, city and county managers,
                 tribal governments, state CIOs, and state geographic experts



                                 Managing partner: Interior




Source: GAO.




The Geospatial One-Stop initiative has made progress toward achieving its
four objectives. In June 2003, the first publicly available version of the
Internet portal was made available online at www.geodata.gov. The portal
is intended to serve as a single access point for users seeking links to
geospatial data that were previously online but not as easily accessible. The
portal was originally scheduled to go online in 2004, based on work being



Page 10                                               GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
performed by the Open GIS Consortium.6 However, OMB accelerated this
schedule by requiring that the portal be operational by May 2003. In order
to have a portal operational within this time frame, the board agreed to turn
near-term work over to ESRI, Inc., which developed the portal based on
modifications to an existing portal it had built for Interior’s Bureau of Land
Management.7 Project officials now plan to make use of the Open GIS
Consortium’s development work to enhance www.geodata.gov in 2004.

Regarding the second objective—data standards development—project
officials developed draft versions of each of the planned standards on
schedule in 2003. In most cases the drafts are simplified version of older
standards developed by and for federal agency use. The draft standards
were provided for informal public review and comment on the Geospatial
One-Stop Web site. By the end of September 2003, project officials had
submitted these drafts to the American National Standards Institute, where
formal public review will be conducted and the standards will be finalized.
Project officials expect the standards to be approved in 2004.

Progress in developing an inventory of federal geospatial data holdings—
Geospatial One-Stop’s third objective—has been limited. OMB Circular
A-11 required that by the end of February 2003, agencies make accessible
and searchable for posting on the Internet metadata8 about all data sets
with a replacement cost exceeding $1 million. Potential users of geospatial
data sets need metadata to determine whether the data are useful for their
purposes and to be aware of any special stipulations about processing and
interpreting the data. An initial inventory of 256,000 existing federal data
sets was assembled and made available through the Geospatial One-Stop
portal when it was implemented in June 2003, and the Geospatial One-Stop
Web site provides an online tool to assist agencies in documenting their
geospatial metadata. However, the extent to which agencies have met
requirements for submitting metadata is unknown. According to the


6
 The Open GIS Consortium, Inc., is an international industry group of 258 companies,
government agencies, and universities that develop open systems specifications for
processing geospatial information.
7
 The Bureau of Land Management’s portal, www.geocommunicator.gov, was developed
using commercial off-the-shelf software provided by the Environmental Systems Research
Institute, Inc. (ESRI).
8
 Metadata are information describing the content, quality, condition, and other
characteristics of data, such as when they were collected or the coordinate system they are
based on.




Page 11                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                         project’s metadata coordinator, agencies may not be aware of their
                         responsibilities for posting metadata about their geospatial submissions. To
                         address this issue, the project team is planning to take steps to improve
                         communication with federal agencies to help ensure that they understand
                         their responsibilities for making geospatial data publicly accessible.

                         To encourage greater coordination among federal, state, and local agencies
                         about existing and planned geospatial data collection projects (the
                         initiative’s fourth objective), an intergovernmental board of directors was
                         established. The purpose of the board is to help ensure collaboration
                         among potential stakeholders from all government sectors. In addition, a
                         Geospatial One-Stop Web site (www.geo-one-stop.gov) was created to
                         provide information about the project, its progress, and its benefits; the
                         project’s management staff and executive director provide briefings across
                         the country to facilitate coordination with states and localities; and an
                         outreach coordinator was appointed to further communication and
                         coordination among partners and stakeholders.



Integrated Acquisition   The overall goal of the Integrated Acquisition Environment initiative is to
Environment              create a secure suite of electronic tools to facilitate cost-effective
                         acquisition of goods and services by federal agencies, while eliminating
                         inefficiencies in the current acquisition process. To meet this goal, plans
                         are to (1) consolidate common acquisition functions through a shared
                         services environment; (2) leverage existing acquisition capabilities within
                         agencies to create a simpler, common, integrated business process for
                         buyers and sellers that promotes competition, transparency, and integrity;
                         and (3) develop cross-agency standards to eliminate duplication of effort
                         and redundancy of data. GSA is the managing partner agency. In addition,
                         31 other federal agencies are considered participating partners in the
                         initiative. Figure 4 shows the partners and affected parties for this
                         initiative.




                         Page 12                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Figure 4: Partners and Affected Parties for the Integrated Acquisition Environment
Initiative

                             Affected parties: contractors
                         and nonparticipating federal agencies



                               Managing partner: GSA




Source: GAO.



Regarding its first objective of consolidating common acquisition functions
through a shared services environment, the project was generally on
schedule at the time of our review, although several interim milestones
were completed later than scheduled. An example of one of the tasks
within this objective is the development of “eMarketplace,” an online
capability intended to provide federal customers a single access point to
interagency contracts and electronic catalogs for goods and services. In
July 2002 an initial operational directory structure for interagency
contracts was completed, and in May 2003 the directory was made
available online for agencies to populate with their contract data. The
development of the directory structure had been scheduled for December
2002, but it was delayed because the approval process required to make
changes to federal acquisition regulations was lengthier than had been
anticipated.

Overall there have been no significant deviations from the planned
schedule for tasks within the second objective, leveraging existing agency
acquisition capabilities to create a common, integrated business process
for buyers and sellers. For example, the Integrated Acquisition
Environment’s Business Partner Network, based on the Department of
Defense’s Central Contractor Registration system, is intended to provide a
single point of registration, validation, and access for grantees, federal
entities, and companies seeking to do business with the federal
government. Since March 2002, the project team has been working to
develop this network to serve as a single source for vendor data for the




Page 13                                          GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
government, to integrate data with other vendor-based systems in the
government, and to establish a process for verifying vendor information
with third parties, such as vendors’ Taxpayer Identification Numbers with
the Internal Revenue Service. In February 2003, as scheduled, the Business
Partner Network completed the development of an online system that
allows contractors to enter their representations and certification
information once for use on all government contracts. Previously, vendors
were required to submit representations and certification individually for
each large purchase contract award.

Initial work addressing the project’s third objective—developing cross-
agency standards to eliminate duplication of effort and redundancy of
data—was also on schedule at the time of our review. The standards to be
developed under this objective include data elements, business definitions,
interfaces, and agency roles and responsibilities regarding government
acquisition data. These standards are expected to serve as a foundation for
redesigning the current inefficient process of government-to-government
transactions by streamlining ordering, billing, and collection and improving
reconciliation of intragovernmental transactions. Since March 2002, the
project team has been working on the first task of the standards
development process—developing a map of current acquisition practices
and defining future acquisition processes. According to project managers,
the project team completed this task by the end of September 2003.

The implementation phase for the Integrated Acquisition Environment
project is scheduled for completion by December 2004. While GSA had
successfully completed several scheduled milestones at the time of our
review, other major tasks lie ahead. These tasks include (1) ensuring that
the online directory of contracts is populated and kept up to date, which
will require all federal agencies to submit their data into the directory in a
standardized format; (2) deploying commercial standards to facilitate
interaction among shared acquisition systems, between shared systems
and agency systems, and between shared systems and vendor systems; and
(3) redesigning and deploying government-to-government transactions,
which calls for standard procedures and common data elements to
integrate disparate systems and processes across the federal government.




Page 14                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Business Gateway   The Business Gateway9 is a cross-agency, intergovernmental effort to
                   create a Web services portal that reduces the burden on small businesses
                   by making it easier for them to find, understand, and comply with
                   governmental laws and regulations. It is intended to provide small
                   businesses with one-stop access to information about federal, state, and
                   local laws and regulations and how to comply with them. More specifically,
                   the Business Gateway is intended to help businesses find information on
                   laws and regulatory requirements, provide assistance through automated
                   tools designed to help businesses understand their regulatory obligations,
                   and transact business by supporting online permit applications and
                   licensing tools. The initiative is focused on four functional areas—
                   environmental protection, workplace health and safety, employment, and
                   taxes—as well as several specific industries, including trucking and mining.
                   SBA is the managing partner agency. Other federal partners include the
                   Environmental Protection Agency; the Department of Labor and its
                   component agency, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration;
                   GSA; the Internal Revenue Service; and the Departments of Transportation,
                   Energy, Interior, and Homeland Security. Nonfederal partners include trade
                   associations and state chief information officers from Washington, Illinois,
                   Georgia, Missouri, Iowa, and New Jersey. Figure 5 shows the partners and
                   affected parties for this initiative.




                   9
                    Until July 1, 2003, the Business Gateway project was known as Business Compliance One-
                   Stop.




                   Page 15                                           GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Figure 5: Partners and Affected Parties for the Business Gateway Initiative

                              Affected parties: small businesses
                                    Nonfederal partners:
                              trade associations and state CIOs




                                   Managing partner: SBA




Source: GAO.




The initiative was originally planned to be implemented in two separate
phases. Phase one was to consist of implementing www.BusinessLaw.gov, a
Web portal intended to serve as a single place for finding “plain English”
legal guides and legal and regulatory information links from all 50 states
and compliance assistance in 17 areas, such as workplace safety or
environmental protection. This phase was completed when the portal
became operational in December 2001. The second phase was to make the
portal more interactive and broader in focus. More specifically, phase two
objectives included (1) developing a navigation tool known as a “portal
maximizer,” intended to enhance access to laws and regulations by helping
users to quickly find relevant information from large amounts of data;
(2) offering a range of automated compliance assistance tools for specific
kinds of regulations, as well as a “profiler”10 to identify applicable tools; and
(3) prototyping a transaction engine for integrated business registration,
online licensing, and permitting.

Before the project was refocused in July 2003, SBA had made only limited
progress toward achieving phase two objectives and was not on track to

10
  The profiler is intended to gather information about a user’s business and use the
information to identify relevant compliance assistance tools and resources. The system uses
a set of online, standardized questions to prompt users to provide information such as type
of business, number of employees, location, and whether it is a new or existing business.




Page 16                                               GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
meet its planned 2003 milestones. A pilot version of the planned portal
maximizer had been implemented, but only four of the planned automated
compliance assistance tools had been developed.11 Project plans called for
up to 30 additional compliance assistance expert tools to be developed
during the second phase of the project. The profiler was also behind
schedule, with only mockups of the planned user interface developed.
Work on three specialized portals for the trucking, food, and chemical
industries was also behind schedule. The project manager attributed the
incomplete progress to a funding shortfall within SBA for fiscal year 2003.

On July 1, 2003, OMB announced that it was refocusing the project to
reduce the paperwork burden on small businesses. The decision was based
on the findings of an interagency task force created by OMB in response to
requirements of the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002. In its
final report,12 the task force stated that it believed the initiative showed
promise as a means for achieving the purpose of the Small Business
Paperwork Relief Act, since it was intended to ultimately provide small
businesses a single point of entry for regulatory compliance information.
The refocused project is now aimed at creating a gateway for compliance
assistance and online transactions that would reduce the paperwork
burden through integrated electronic forms. One of the stated goals of the
planned gateway is to increase federal agencies’ compliance with the
Government Paperwork Elimination Act13 to at least 75 percent by
September 2004. This was to be achieved by creating, with the help of GSA,
a central online repository for federal forms and by consolidating
information collections and forms with similar data elements. Another goal
is to reduce redundant data and the overall number of federal forms by at
least 10 percent.

According to several participating agency representatives, it is unclear how
the change in the project’s focus will affect implementation of the
previously planned modules, such as the profiler and the compliance tools.
At the time of our review, no decision had been made about what funding


11
 The four tools that were implemented include (1) the Alien Employee Visa Classification
eTool, (2) the Emergency Evacuation Procedures eTool, (3) the Auto Dismantler & Recycler
Environmental Audit Advisor, and (4) the Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Wells Advisor.
12
 Office of Management and Budget, Final Report of the Small Business Paperwork Relief
Task Force (Washington, D.C.: June 27, 2003).
13
     Public Law 105-277, Div. C, tit. XVII.




Page 17                                            GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                         or other resources would be made available to continue development
                         efforts that had been previously under way as part of phase two of the
                         project.



Key Practices            With the increasing focus on collaboration brought about by the move
                         toward e-government, there has been a need to identify key characteristics
Facilitate Interagency   that contribute to the success of cross-organizational collaborative
Collaboration            e-government projects. Based on a review of government, private sector,
                         and academic research and guidance,14 we identified five broad key
                         practices that can have a significant impact on the effectiveness of
                         collaboration across disparate organizations. These key collaboration
                         practices could have a significant impact on whether the 25 OMB-
                         sponsored e-government initiatives are successful. Taken as a whole, these
                         factors can provide an interorganizational project team with the
                         fundamentals for an effective collaborative process.

                         • Establishing a collaborative management structure. Building a
                           collaborative management structure across participating organizations
                           is an essential foundation for ensuring effective collaboration.
                           According to the literature we reviewed, strong leadership is critical to
                           the success of intergovernmental initiatives. Involvement by leaders
                           from all levels is important for maintaining commitment and keeping a
                           project on track. Defining a comprehensive structure of participants’
                           roles and responsibilities is also a key factor. For example, according to
                           a 1998 study by the Intergovernmental Advisory Board,15 a project to
                           develop a nationwide law enforcement information system was
                           successful due to the establishment of a policy board responsible for
                           coordination and partnership within the law enforcement community.
                           The board’s members represented law enforcement organizations at all
                           levels of government, and the board provided a structure and process to
                           ensure a voice for each member of the partnership.




                         14
                          Appendix II provides a complete list of the collaboration sources that we reviewed for our
                         study.
                         15
                          Intergovernmental Advisory Board (General Services Administration), Foundations for
                         Successful Intergovernmental Management: Federal, State and Local Government
                         Experiences (October 1998), 54–55.




                         Page 18                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
• Maintaining collaborative relationships. Once a collaborative
  management structure is in place, well-defined, equitable working
  relationships must be developed and take root in order to ensure
  effective ongoing collaboration. Researchers have found that all the
  partners in a collaborative undertaking need to share a common vision
  and work in a climate of trust and respect in order to elicit full
  participation. An important element of establishing effective
  collaborative relationships is to reach formal agreements with each
  partner organization on a clear purpose, expected outputs, and realistic
  performance measures. For example, in an intergovernmental project
  led by the state of Pennsylvania to enhance its vehicle emissions
  program, a broad coalition of stakeholder groups representing
  government, private businesses, and special interest groups were
  directly involved in selecting a strategy and designing the program.
  According to a GSA study of the project,16 the participants worked well
  together and endorsed the process primarily because all views were
  considered seriously and many suggestions were incorporated.

• Contributing resources equitably. The responsibility for meeting a
  project’s resource requirements needs to be equitably distributed among
  project participants. In order to facilitate a collaborative environment,
  each participating organization should contribute resources in the form
  of human capital or funding to demonstrate its commitment to the
  success of the project. In addition, formal processes to collect these
  resources from partner agencies—such as written agreements to
  document the resource contributions expected from each partner—are
  useful to support this practice. According to a study performed by the
  Amherst H. Wilder Foundation,17 a collaborative group needs to
  consider the resources of its members. Similarly, partner organizations
  must be prepared to devote substantial staff hours to the collaborative
  effort.

• Facilitating communication and outreach. Another key element of
  effective collaboration is developing and implementing effective
  communication and outreach mechanisms. Tools that clearly
  communicate the project status and needs among all partners should be

16
 Foundations for Successful Intergovernmental Management: Federal, State and Local
Government Experiences, 21–22.
17
 Collaboration: What Makes It Work, Amherst H. Wilder Foundation, second edition (2001),
27.




Page 19                                            GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
     used continuously, targeting all partner organizations and their key
     decision makers. In addition, effective outreach mechanisms are
     important to keep other stakeholders informed who may not be actively
     involved in developing systems or business processes, and an outreach
     plan may be needed to specify tasks and mechanisms to help promote
     interest and participation in the project. For example, while working on
     a collaborative project to reduce highway fatalities, the Department of
     Transportation implemented a knowledge-sharing management portal
     to facilitate the exchange of information and ideas between the Federal
     Highway Administration and the states. This communication tool
     proved to be effective in ensuring widespread and frequent
     communication and was subsequently implemented in other
     transportation communities.18

• Adopting a common set of standards. Developing a common set of
  standards that are agreed to and used by all project partners is a key
  factor for effective collaboration. Such standards provide a basis for
  more seamless systems, data, and business process integration on
  collaborative projects, and help to ensure that those systems and
  processes can work together. Specifically, ensuring that there are
  processes in place by which project partners can select and agree upon
  standards and that all partners are adopting them are key factors in
  establishing these essential common standards. In GSA’s Government
  Without Boundaries program, which provided a virtual pool of
  government information and services, all stakeholders agreed to a
  technical approach for interoperability and implemented a
  demonstration to prove the concept.19

These five key practices and their major elements are summarized in
table 1.




18
 Industry Advisory Council, e-Government Shared Interest Group, Cross-Jurisdictional
e-Government Implementations (September 2002), 16–17.
19
 Office of Intergovernmental Solutions, General Services Administration, Government
Without Boundaries: A Management Approach to Intergovernmental Programs (May 23,
2002).




Page 20                                           GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                   Table 1: Key Collaboration Practices and Their Major Elements

                   Key practice                Major elements
                   Establish a collaborative   Strong leadership is present among partners.
                   management structure        Involvement of all leadership levels is an instituted practice.
                                               Partner/stakeholder roles and responsibilities are clearly
                                               defined, agreed to, and understood by participants.
                   Maintain collaborative      A common vision is shared among partners.
                   relationships               A climate of trust and respect is fostered through open
                                               communication.
                                               Formal agreements with a clear purpose, common
                                               performance outputs, and realistic performance measures
                                               are used to provide a firm management foundation.
                   Contribute resources        Formal processes to contribute human capital and funds,
                   equitably                   such as written agreements, ensure that needed resources
                                               are promised and delivered.
                   Facilitate communication    Communication strategies facilitate two-way communication
                   and outreach                among the project team, partners, and other stakeholders.
                                               Outreach programs keep those affected by the initiative
                                               informed of new developments and provide structured means
                                               for feedback and questions.
                   Adopt a common set of       Processes are in place by which partners can discuss,
                   standards                   develop, and agree to common standards needed for
                                               initiative success.
                   Source: GAO.




Initiatives Have   The four initiatives we reviewed have all taken steps to promote
                   collaboration with their partner agencies. However, none of the initiatives
Achieved Varying   has been fully effective in collaborating with important stakeholders. In
Degrees of         comparing the four initiatives’ ongoing and planned activities with the key
                   collaboration practices, we identified significant accomplishments as well
Collaboration      as shortcomings and potential challenges. For example, regarding two key
                   practices (establishing a collaborative management structure and
                   contributing resources equitably) we found that three of the four
                   initiatives—e-Payroll, Geospatial One-Stop, and Integrated Acquisition
                   Environment—had taken actions that met planned objectives or that
                   stakeholders found to be effective. However, regarding another key
                   practice—facilitating communication and outreach—an equal number
                   (Geospatial One-Stop, Integrated Acquisition Environment, and Business
                   Gateway) had not taken all the steps they could. The four initiatives have
                   all faced short time frames to accomplish their tasks, and they generally




                   Page 21                                              GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
            have not fully adopted key collaboration practices because of other
            competing priorities. However, without involving important stakeholders,
            the initiatives increase the risk that they will not fully achieve their
            objectives or the broader goals of the President’s management agenda.



e-Payroll   OPM has taken positive steps to facilitate collaboration among the
            e-Payroll initiative’s partners, such as (1) establishing a management
            structure with well-defined partner agency roles and responsibilities and
            (2) including the four provider agencies in its effort to identify a common
            set of payroll standards for the federal government. However, OPM has not
            fully addressed concerns raised as part of the collaborative process,
            including concerns about potential changes to payroll standards that may
            be required for the final migration to the two provider partnerships.
            Interagency collaboration on developing a common set of payroll standards
            is particularly important because federal agencies operate under a variety
            of legislative mandates that have complex requirements for payroll
            processing, all of which must be fully addressed in the new standards. In
            table 2, we provide an overview of the initiative’s implementation of the key
            collaboration practices that we identified earlier, followed by a discussion
            of each of the practices.



            Table 2: e-Payroll Implementation of Key Collaboration Practices

            Key practice                     e-Payroll implementation
            Establishing a collaborative     OPM has successfully established a collaborative
            management structure             management structure.
            Maintaining collaborative        OPM is more successful at maintaining collaborative
            relationships                    relationships with payroll providers than with other
                                             stakeholders.
            Contributing resources equitably OPM has developed a plan to ensure that resources
                                             are contributed equitably.
            Facilitating communication and   Payroll providers report that OPM’s efforts at
            outreach                         communication and outreach have been effective.
            Adopting a common set of         OPM has begun an effort to collect views on common
            standards                        standards but faces potential challenges in reaching
                                             governmentwide agreement.
            Source: GAO.


            • Establishing a collaborative management structure. OPM has provided
              guidance to its partner agencies that defines roles and responsibilities



            Page 22                                            GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
     and specifies those partners’ responsibilities with respect to their
     collaborative relationships with their payroll customers. For example, in
     memorandums of agreement with the four selected payroll providers,
     OPM defined the structure that would be used to manage the project.
     The management structure includes the four provider agencies, a
     payroll advisory council with 11 representatives from different federal
     agencies, different functional areas (such as human resources, IT, and
     financial management), and OMB. In addition, OPM developed a plan
     that outlines the content of service level agreements between payroll
     providers and their agency clients. According to the plan, such
     agreements should detail both the scope of client services and
     performance expectations for the service provider and should
     specifically address issues such as change management, billing
     procedures, and support services. Officials from the Department of
     Agriculture’s National Finance Center and the Department of the
     Interior’s National Business Center, two of OPM’s four partner agencies,
     cited this project management approach as successful in promoting
     collaboration on the e-Payroll project.

• Maintaining collaborative relationships. OPM has taken steps to
  develop and maintain collaborative relationships with its partners and
  other federal stakeholders. OPM established a group with
  representatives from the four payroll providers, which holds regular
  meetings to address project status and other initiative issues. Officials
  from three of the four provider agencies told us that this group has been
  very effective in affording them the opportunity to discuss common
  issues and concerns.20 Specifically, Interior’s National Business Center
  representative told us that this forum allowed the federal payroll
  providers to discuss standardizing and implementing two recent
  governmentwide payroll actions—the initiation of flexible spending
  accounts (a program of optional pretax health and dependent care
  savings accounts for federal employees) and a retroactive federal pay
  raise for the first part of 2003—resulting in a consolidated
  governmentwide time frame for the availability of these features.

     In order to elicit full participation, all partners in a collaborative
     undertaking need to share a common vision and work in a climate of
     trust and respect. One way to create such an environment is by ensuring


20
 The fourth provider, the Defense Finance and Accounting Service, did not respond to our
request for information.




Page 23                                            GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
   that all stakeholder concerns are articulated and fully addressed.
   However, according to one stakeholder, OPM has not always effectively
   addressed concerns by agencies being affected by e-Payroll
   consolidation. Specifically, the director of the Payroll/HR Systems
   Service at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) told us that his
   department was not allowed enough time to make a complete
   evaluation of payroll providers before OPM finalized its decision to align
   the department with the Defense Finance and Accounting Service. VA
   had advised OPM in writing that it had concerns that needed to be
   resolved before the selection of a provider was finalized. According to
   VA projections, migrating to the Defense Finance and Accounting
   Service would be both costly and inefficient, because VA would have to
   separate its payroll system from its human resources system. However,
   OPM’s written responses did not directly address VA’s concerns but
   instead emphasized that time available to reconsider the decision was
   short. For example, in a letter dated January 14, 2003, OPM informed VA
   that a business case justifying VA’s position would have to be prepared
   and submitted within 2 days. While OPM exercises the ultimate
   authority in deciding how payroll operations are to be consolidated, it
   could put e-Payroll’s overall schedule at risk by not fully considering and
   responding to stakeholder concerns.

• Contributing resources equitably. OPM has instituted a collaborative
  strategy for financing the e-Payroll project that includes guidance
  identifying the responsibilities of partner and other participating
  agencies for contributing resources for the e-Payroll initiative. For
  example, OPM’s plan for financing the consolidation of payroll service
  providers and the migration of agency payroll operations to designated
  service providers states that the provider agencies are to recover the
  costs of their operations from fees levied on their customers as defined
  in service level agreements. In addition, OPM’s plan relied on OMB to
  apportion funds to the providers for migration expenses by identifying
  agency funding contributions in fiscal years 2003 and 2004. The intent
  was to redirect funding that had been planned for upgrades or other
  payroll system operations and maintenance to support the
  governmentwide effort. In keeping with this intent, officials from
  Energy, Health and Human Services, and the Nuclear Regulatory
  Commission reported that they were using funds earmarked for upgrade
  and maintenance of payroll systems to finance migration costs.

• Facilitating communication and outreach. The e-Payroll management
  team has taken steps to facilitate effective communication of project



Page 24                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
     status and needs. For example, OPM began by inventorying
     stakeholders to identify those affected by the initiative and then
     developed a plan for communicating with them. The resulting
     communications plan identified a variety of methods for conveying
     project information to affected parties, including direct meetings,
     workshops, telephone contact, and formal letters to agency heads
     regarding significant decisions relating to the initiative. OPM also held a
     governmentwide forum intended to provide information about e-Payroll
     to agencies and facilitate interaction among the executive branch
     agencies and the selected providers. In addition, three of the four
     designated payroll providers reported that attending the quarterly
     provider conferences and participating in biweekly conference calls
     sponsored by OPM were effective communications mechanisms.

• Adopting a common set of standards. Consolidating the existing 22
  federal payroll systems into a single system requires that OPM develop a
  common set of payroll standards that will meet the requirements of
  multiple federal agencies with different missions and legislated payroll
  constraints. OPM has taken steps to help ensure that federal agencies
  have input on development of a common set of standards. For example,
  OPM commissioned a study to identify significant differences among the
  payroll processes of the existing 22 providers. Representatives of
  agencies from a cross section of the executive branch, including all four
  of OPM’s partners—the selected payroll providers—participated in the
  study. The resulting 87 payroll standardization opportunities were
  provided to federal agencies for review and comment.21 OPM received
  approximately 250 comments and suggestions for action from federal
  agencies on the standardization opportunities that it identified. These
  agencies’ comments show the complexity of the standardization tasks
  that OPM and its partners have yet to undertake—from proposing new
  legislation to addressing union negotiations. According to OPM officials,
  a focus group was established in July 2003 to further analyze the
  previously identified opportunities and develop recommended
  solutions. Officials told us that standardizing the payroll process is an
  ongoing process and that work to develop a single payroll standard
  would continue with input from other federal agencies.



21
 Examples of “standardization opportunities” include such things as establishing a standard
official payday each pay period for the entire federal government and consolidating all
employees to one biweekly pay cycle.




Page 25                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
       Although OPM has involved its partners and other federal agencies in
       the process of identifying opportunities for standardization, it still faces
       the challenging task of getting federal agencies to reach agreement on a
       single payroll standard that they all can use. As agencies migrate to
       consolidated payroll providers, changes may need to be made either to
       the providers’ payroll processes and standards—so that the various
       payroll mandates can be accommodated—or to the mandated
       requirements themselves, so that agencies can conform to a single
       standard. Fully identifying and assessing the impact on agencies of
       potential payroll standards will be a challenging effort. For example,
       VA’s Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Finance expressed concern
       that OPM officials might not appreciate the complexities of
       administering payroll systems under Title 38 of the United States
       Code22—the legislation that governs VA’s payroll processes—and that
       changes would be necessary to support VA’s payroll processing once it
       migrates to its new payroll provider. According to an OPM study, in
       addition to Title 38, there at least 13 other sets of legislated federal
       payroll provisions that will need to be reviewed and addressed before
       consolidated federal payroll systems can be implemented.23 Without
       effective interagency collaboration, changes mandated by OPM may not
       fully address agencies’ individual payroll processing requirements,
       increasing the risk that agencies will not be able to migrate as planned
       to their new payroll providers. In commenting on a draft of this report,
       OPM officials stated that they have taken steps to ensure that a
       collaborative process was in place for payroll standards development,
       based on establishing a focus group of cross-agency representatives
       within the Payroll Advisory Council. If supported by a detailed strategy,
       OPM’s action may help to address this issue.

The e-Payroll initiative has achieved initial progress based in part on an
effective collaborative management structure and collaborative
relationships with its designated payroll providers. However, the issue
regarding consideration of VA’s concerns could have an adverse impact on
the success of the project as migration of agency payroll operations
progresses. Furthermore, unless OPM places increased emphasis on
collaboration as governmentwide standards are developed and


22
     38 U.S.C., Part V, Chapter 74—Veterans Health Administration—Personnel.
23
 Office of Personnel Management, e-Payroll Initiative: Plan for Standardization of
Federal Payroll Policy, Revision 1 (Washington, D.C.: Jan. 13, 2003).




Page 26                                              GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                      consolidation of payroll systems progresses, it will be at increased risk that
                      the consolidated systems will not meet the needs of all federal agencies.



Geospatial One-Stop   Ensuring effective collaboration on Geospatial One-Stop is a significant
                      challenge. In addition to the eight federal agencies designated as partners,
                      the project’s stakeholders include thousands of state and local
                      governments, as well as other nonpartner federal agencies. State and local
                      agencies perform key functions in collecting and managing geospatial
                      data—it is estimated that about 90 percent of geospatial data is collected by
                      state and local governments, and that those governments invest over twice
                      as much as the federal government to collect and maintain such data.
                      Consequently, states’ and localities’ participation in the Geospatial One-
                      Stop initiative is critical. Interior has taken steps to include nonfederal
                      stakeholders on the project. For example, it established an
                      intergovernmental management structure, conducted briefings at meetings
                      and conferences across the country to promote stakeholder participation,
                      appointed an outreach coordinator to facilitate communication with
                      stakeholders, and included states and localities in drafting national
                      geospatial data standards. However, given the large number of
                      stakeholders, Interior has not yet ensured that many states and localities
                      are involved in the project. In addition, although Interior has collaborated
                      with its partners and other stakeholders in developing draft geospatial
                      standards, it has not taken steps to ensure that those standards will be used
                      by a majority of the project’s federal, state, or local stakeholders. Table 3 is
                      an overview of the key collaboration practices as implemented by the
                      Geospatial One-Stop initiative, followed by further discussion.




                      Page 27                                       GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Table 3: Geospatial One-Stop Implementation of Key Collaboration Practices

Key practice                      Geospatial One-Stop implementation
Establishing a collaborative      Interior has established a board of directors that
management structure              includes federal and nonfederal stakeholders.
Maintaining collaborative         Partners and stakeholders largely have not established
relationships                     formal agreements outlining a common vision and roles
                                  and responsibilities for collaborative relationships.
Contributing resources equitably Although partner agencies initially did not contribute
                                 funds as projected, they have made planned
                                 contributions in fiscal year 2003.
Facilitating communication and    Despite a range of outreach efforts, many state and
outreach                          local governments are not participating, apparently
                                  because they do not perceive the benefits to outweigh
                                  the effort and expense of doing so.
Adopting a common set of          Participation in drafting standards has been limited,
standards                         with many states and almost all counties and cities not
                                  participating. Further, achieving consistent
                                  implementation of the standards across levels of
                                  government will be challenging.
Source: GAO.


• Establishing a collaborative management structure. Geospatial One-
  Stop includes eight federal partners and thousands of other
  stakeholders—over 3,000 counties, over 18,000 municipalities, and the
  50 states, as well as other federal agencies that are not partners on the
  project. To help ensure that nonfederal stakeholders have a voice in the
  direction of the project, Interior established an intergovernmental board
  of directors that votes on significant decisions, such as selection of the
  portal architecture and establishment of project schedule dates.
  Two-thirds of the votes are held by state, local, and tribal
  representatives, and one-third by federal partner agencies.
  Establishment of the board has worked well to facilitate collaborative
  intergovernmental management and oversight of the Geospatial One-
  Stop initiative. For example, at recent board meetings, members
  discussed issues such as the status of the initiative, standards concerns,
  and the management structure of the initiative as reflected in its most
  recent business case. The representative to the board from the National
  States Geographic Information Council told us that state, county, and
  municipal levels of government were well represented and played a




Page 28                                              GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
     useful role in providing alternative views about the direction of the
     initiative.24

• Maintaining collaborative relationships. While Geospatial One-Stop
  has established a management structure to facilitate collaboration, it
  has made less progress in defining working relationships among its
  collaborative partners. One positive step was the development of a
  charter for the project’s board of directors, which discusses authority,
  responsibilities, voting procedures, and coordinating mechanisms for
  the board members. The charter was signed by each of the board’s
  members. However, at the time of our review, other than this charter,
  only one memorandum of understanding had been established regarding
  collaborative relationships—an agreement on coordinating GIS
  standards related to homeland security, which was signed by the
  Federal Geographic Data Committee, the U.S. Geological Survey, and
  the National Imagery and Mapping Agency. Without formal agreements
  among the Geospatial One-Stop project partners, it may be difficult to
  sustain a shared vision for the project and ensure that progress is being
  made toward achieving its objectives.

• Contributing resources equitably. While Geospatial One-Stop initially
  had difficulty obtaining resource contributions from federal partner
  agencies, these early problems have largely been resolved. According to
  the executive director, partner agencies did not contribute funds for
  fiscal year 2002 as had been projected in the project’s capital asset plan,
  even though the agencies had been involved in preparing the plan.
  Instead, Interior provided all fiscal year 2002 funds for the project. For
  fiscal year 2003, the capital asset plan estimated that Interior would
  contribute about $2.2 million, while the other seven partner agencies
  would contribute the remaining $6.2 million. According to a project
  official, all agencies have made their planned contributions. The
  availability of funds from partner agencies in fiscal year 2003 has
  allowed Geospatial One-Stop to complete several tasks on schedule,
  such as deploying the initial version of the www.geodata.gov portal and
  submitting draft national geospatial data standards to the American
  National Standards Institute.

24
 The National States Geographic Information Council is an organization of states that
promotes the adoption and use of geographic information technologies. Members include
state GIS coordinators, senior state GIS managers, and representatives from federal
agencies, local government, the private sector, academia, and other professional
organizations.




Page 29                                           GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
• Facilitating communication and outreach. The Geospatial One-Stop
  project team uses a number of different mechanisms to communicate
  information about the project to potential stakeholders and the public.
  For example, the project management team established a Web site that
  provides information such as minutes of the board of directors
  meetings, links to partners’ and other stakeholders’ Web sites,
  geospatial data standards, and the most recent Geospatial One-Stop
  business case. The executive director and other Geospatial One-Stop
  project members also provide briefings and question-and-answer
  sessions at conferences and participate in other forums to provide
  information about the project to other stakeholders. The project’s
  executive director attended the midyear meeting of the National States
  Geographic Information Council, where he provided a briefing and a
  luncheon talk about Geospatial One-Stop to all attendees and addressed
  the attendees’ questions and concerns. In addition, the initiative’s
  project team, in conjunction with the National Association of Counties,
  the National League of Cities, and the International City/County
  Managers Association, conducted a survey of local governments to
  gather information about the extent of respondents’ use of geospatial
  data and the reasons why such data are not being used more extensively
  by those governments.

   Despite these measures, according to state GIS officials the project has
   not yet gained participation from other governments because they may
   not perceive it to be beneficial to undertake the effort and expense of
   documenting and making available local geospatial data for inclusion in
   the www.geodata.gov portal. For example, the executive director of
   Vermont’s Center for Geographic Information, Inc., told us that he did
   not know whether Vermont’s geospatial data holdings were being
   considered for inclusion in Geospatial One-Stop and that the benefits of
   participation had not been well communicated. In addition, Montana’s
   GIS coordinator told us that Montana had not yet committed to
   participate in the project and that state government officials did not
   understand the benefits of participating. According to the Geospatial
   One-Stop Capital Asset Plan, Interior is planning to provide incentives
   for state, local, and tribal governments to participate, although the
   project’s executive director told us that carrying out these plans is
   contingent on approval of funding. Also, in a draft of Interior’s fiscal
   year 2005 plan, several planned actions to accomplish these tasks have
   been identified. Planned actions include providing funding to help state,
   local, and tribal organizations to become more engaged in
   intergovernmental geospatial activities and establishing a liaison



Page 30                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
     program with funding to local stakeholder associations to work with
     Geospatial One-Stop and serve as a liaison between federal agencies and
     those associations. In addition, according to the Geospatial One-Stop
     outreach coordinator, other efforts not provided in the initiative’s capital
     asset plans include identifying opportunities to promote geospatial
     information as part of the state and local government policy efforts and
     enhance outreach in other areas of the project, such as standards
     development and management of the portal. However, there are no
     plans to develop a formal outreach plan for the Geospatial One-Stop
     initiative. Unless a detailed plan is documented and implemented for
     conducting effective outreach, state and local geospatial information
     may remain inaccessible through the Geospatial One-Stop portal,
     significantly reducing the usefulness of the portal as a central access
     point for such data.

• Adopting a common set of standards. Interior has taken steps to
  collaboratively develop a set of basic standards to support the collection
  of interoperable geospatial data for the Geospatial One-Stop initiative.
  Specifically, project participants have drafted standards for seven types
  of data25 as well as a base standard, with participants from other federal
  agencies, states, localities, the private sector, and academia
  participating in their development. However, participation in the
  standards-setting process has been limited. Several large nonpartner
  federal agencies—such as the Departments of Treasury, Justice, and
  Health and Human Services—were not represented on the standards
  development effort. In addition, local government representation
  included only 23 counties and 3 cities. As a result, the risk is substantial
  that many federal and local stakeholders may not adopt the proposed
  standards because those standards may not meet their needs.

     Further, definition of the standards is only the first step in realizing their
     benefits; Geospatial One-Stop has not addressed the challenge of
     gaining consistent implementation of the standards across
     governments—a key factor in effective collaboration. Many states and
     localities have already established Web sites that provide a variety of
     location-related information services, such as updated traffic and


25
 The seven types are transportation, hydrography, government units, geodetic control
(supporting a common coordinate system), elevation, digital orthoimagery (having the
characteristics of a map and the image of a photograph), and cadastral (relating to land
ownership).




Page 31                                              GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                            transportation information, land ownership and tax records, and
                            information on housing for the elderly, using existing commercial
                            products that are already meeting their needs. Hence these
                            organizations are likely to have little incentive to adopt potentially
                            incompatible standards that could require substantial new investments.
                            According to Arizona’s state cartographer, many local governments
                            currently do not comply with existing federal standards because most of
                            their GIS applications were created primarily to meet their internal
                            needs, with little concern for data sharing with federal systems. If
                            designated standards are not widely adopted, geospatial data could
                            continue to be collected in incompatible formats and systems,
                            preventing officials from gaining the benefits of better-informed
                            decisions about public investments in infrastructure and services based
                            on an integrated view of geospatial information.

                         While the Geospatial One-Stop project established a significant
                         collaborative management structure in its broadly representative board of
                         directors, the project has not fully adopted other key collaborative
                         practices. It faces significant challenges in obtaining participation from
                         thousands of potential project stakeholders and obtaining their agreement
                         on and implementation of geospatial data standards. Such participation
                         will be difficult to achieve without a more structured and rigorous outreach
                         effort to involve federal, state, and local government agencies.



Integrated Acquisition   The General Services Administration has taken steps to ensure that a
Environment              variety of mechanisms are in place to facilitate collaboration on the
                         Integrated Acquisition Environment initiative. For example, the project
                         team developed a formal charter outlining the objectives, tasks, and roles
                         and responsibilities of project partners, and it is in the process of
                         completing implementation of memorandums of agreement with all
                         participating agencies to further define their roles and financial
                         responsibilities. In addition, GSA has developed a communication strategy
                         for the initiative to help ensure that partners and stakeholders are
                         informed. However, that strategy does not include key financial decision
                         makers throughout the government, although our research shows that such
                         officials should be informed of project status and needs on a continuous
                         basis. Finally, GSA’s plans for developing standards for the federal
                         acquisitions process are in line with the key practices that we identified.
                         Table 4 provides an overview of the initiative’s collaboration practices,
                         followed by further discussion.




                         Page 32                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Table 4: Integrated Acquisition Environment Implementation of Key Collaboration
Practices

                                 Integrated Acquisition Environment
Key practice                     implementation
Establishing a collaborative     Interagency development of a charter established a
management structure             common foundation for collaboration, and the use of
                                 subteams to develop project modules facilitates
                                 collaboration at the working level.
Maintaining collaborative        Effective collaboration mechanisms have been
relationships                    established, including memorandums of agreement
                                 that define partners’ roles and funding contributions, as
                                 well as regular weekly meetings of business area
                                 teams and project managers.
Contributing resources equitably GSA has been successful in obtaining allotted resource
                                 contributions from most of its participating partner
                                 agencies.
Facilitating communication and   A detailed communication plan and a range of outreach
outreach                         efforts have been effective at promoting collaboration,
                                 but key financial decision makers—the Chief Financial
                                 Officers—have not been included.
Adopting a common set of         The project team is planning to use commercial
standards                        standards to develop proposed standard interfaces and
                                 to distribute them to the federal procurement
                                 community for comment.
Source: GAO.


• Establishing a collaborative management structure. The project team
  established a charter for the Integrated Acquisition Environment
  initiative that all partners and stakeholders agreed to during the initial
  phase of the project. According to the project manager, the interagency
  development of and agreement to the initiative’s charter allowed the
  project team to collectively establish a common foundation for working
  collaboratively on the initiative. In addition, the project management
  team established a structure of subteams responsible for leading
  development within each of five project modules defined in the charter.
  The subteams consist of representatives from at least 22 agencies who
  are tasked with serving as the primary liaisons between their agencies
  and the project management team. This well-defined subteam structure
  can contribute to effective collaboration at the working level among the
  many agencies involved in the project. Further, GSA is in the process of
  developing a comprehensive change management plan to be completed
  in early 2004. This plan is to address stakeholder involvement through
  the use of multi-agency, cross-functional teams at the executive level




Page 33                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
   and collaborative design of the system through business area teams
   populated with partner agency representatives.

• Maintaining collaborative relationships. The project management
  team is in the process of establishing memorandums of agreement with
  each partner agency; these agreements further define each partner’s role
  and expected funding contributions. As of September 2003,
  memorandums of agreement had been signed with 21 agencies, 3 were
  near completion, and 7 remained to be completed. In addition, GSA
  officials reported that several collaborative forums for Integrated
  Acquisition Environment stakeholders were in place. For example,
  business area teams and project managers hold regular weekly
  meetings, which serve to reinforce collaborative relationships that cut
  across organizational boundaries. In addition, an Industry Advisory
  Board provides industry perspectives on priority needs, requirements,
  best practices, and trends. Officials from 10 partner and stakeholder
  agencies that we contacted indicated that the project’s collaboration
  mechanisms were effective.

• Contributing resources equitably. To date, the project has been
  successful in obtaining resource contributions from most of its partner
  agencies. According to GSA officials, as of September 2003, 94 percent
  of requested funds had been received. According to the project
  managers, GSA anticipates that all participating partner agencies will
  contribute their allotted amounts in fiscal year 2004.

• Facilitating communication and outreach. The Integrated Acquisition
  Environment’s project team has taken a number of concrete steps to
  build communication and outreach among partners and stakeholders.
  For instance, the team has developed a detailed communication plan
  that clearly identifies their audience, as well as various communication
  tactics, such as creating e-mail news updates, participating in “industry
  days,” meeting with agencies’ senior officials, and contributing content
  to the press. Project officials also established an online workspace
  where participants can share information, organize conferences to share
  information with private industry, and hold regular team meetings.
  According to comments from several participants and interested parties,
  these strategies are effective in providing necessary information
  regarding the initiative. Interior’s deputy assistant secretary for
  performance and management, for example, noted that these measures
  have been effective at promoting collaboration by focusing on sharing
  information and generating agency support for the initiative.



Page 34                                    GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
   However, the project team has not included all stakeholders that it could
   in its communication and outreach efforts. Specifically, Chief Financial
   Officers (CFO) of partner and stakeholder agencies, who make key
   decisions about financial contributions to the initiative, said they had
   not been included and consequently have not been kept up to date about
   the objectives and requirements of the initiative. Representatives of the
   partner agency CFOs provided suggestions that highlighted
   shortcomings in GSA’s communications with the financial community to
   date. For example, Treasury’s CFO noted that the specific objectives of
   the initiative should be communicated to senior financial managers so
   that they understand how the initiative will support the missions of their
   organizations. According to the assistant CFO for the Department of
   Housing and Urban Development, the project team could more
   effectively reach the financial community by interacting regularly with
   the federal CFO Council, a mechanism established as a focal point for
   financial management issues in the federal government. According to
   the Integrated Acquisition Environment’s project managers, increased
   support from the CFOs could increase the likelihood of partner agencies
   contributing funds to the initiative. These officials told us that they are
   working to better include financial decision makers in future project
   communications by updating the project’s communication plan to
   include agencies’ CFOs and coordinating more actively with the CFO
   council as new project modules are developed. In commenting on a
   draft of this report, GSA officials stated that GSA has scheduled
   discussions about the initiative with a cross section of CFOs and plans
   to invite a representative of the CFO Council to participate in the
   Integrated Acquisition Environment governance body. However, at the
   time of our review, these actions had not yet been completed. Without
   taking such an inclusive approach, the project could be at greater risk of
   not meeting its objectives due to future funding shortfalls.

• Adopting a common set of standards. The lack of standardization in
  government-to-government transactions adds to the complexity and
  inefficiency of the current process. A primary objective of the Integrated
  Acquisition Environment initiative is to establish standard data
  elements, business definitions, interfaces, and roles and responsibilities
  for government acquisitions. Achieving this objective is likely to be
  challenging. Once agreed upon, the new standards are expected to
  streamline the data handling processes, reduce workload, improve
  billing accuracy, and help enforce data stewardship roles and
  responsibilities. The project team’s standards development strategy
  includes obtaining comments from as many affected federal agencies as



Page 35                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                      possible, which is in line with the key collaboration practices that we
                      identified. Having begun by mapping the process currently in place, the
                      project team intends in October 2003 to begin using commercial
                      standards to develop proposed standard interfaces. As proposed
                      standards are developed, the project team plans to distribute them to all
                      members of the federal procurement community—128 agencies—for
                      comment. The process of addressing these comments and reaching final
                      agreement on standards is likely to be challenging, given the number of
                      affected agencies.

                   GSA has adopted a variety of effective collaborative practices that have
                   contributed to progress in advancing the goals of the project. Like the other
                   initiatives, Integrated Acquisition Environment still faces additional
                   challenging tasks, especially in setting standards. Involving agency
                   financial decision makers could help reduce the risk that agencies may not
                   contribute resources in future years.



Business Gateway   Collaboration on the Business Gateway project is critical at two broad
                   levels. First, several key federal agencies that are responsible for business
                   regulation—such as the Departments of Labor and Transportation and the
                   Environmental Protection Agency—must collaborate to make it easier for
                   businesses to access and comply with their regulations. Second, the
                   Business Gateway project team must collaborate with industry-specific
                   groups that are the subject of business regulation—such as truckers and
                   miners—to ensure that the planned gateway will meet their needs. In
                   specific areas, such as development of the gateway’s profiler module,
                   collaboration has been successful. However, on the whole, SBA’s actions to
                   involve its partners and other stakeholders in the Business Gateway
                   initiative have not addressed many of the areas that we found to be
                   essential to achieving effective collaboration. SBA has not yet taken steps
                   to document project responsibilities in interagency agreements, achieve
                   equitable resource contributions among partners, or provide adequate
                   outreach to partners and potential stakeholders to ensure that they are
                   kept fully informed about the project. Table 5 is an overview of the key
                   collaboration practices as implemented by the Business Gateway initiative,
                   followed by further discussion.




                   Page 36                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Table 5: Business Gateway Implementation of Key Collaboration Practices

Key practice                     Business Gateway implementation
Establishing a collaborative     A project charter has been developed, but it does not
management structure             define roles or responsibilities or establish collaborative
                                 decision-making processes.
Maintaining collaborative        Mechanisms have not yet been established to maintain
relationships                    collaborative working relationships among partners and
                                 stakeholders.
Contributing resources equitably Rather than having partners contribute resources, SBA
                                 is both funding the initiative and controlling decision
                                 making, which does not encourage participation and
                                 collaboration.
Facilitating communication and   Although subgroups have displayed effective
outreach                         communication practices, projectwide communication
                                 and outreach have been limited, resulting in key
                                 decision makers not being involved.
Adopting a common set of         The initiative has agreed on common standards,
standards                        adopting existing data and technical standards where
                                 available and developing ad hoc standards when
                                 needed.
Source: GAO.


• Establishing a collaborative management structure. To facilitate
  collaboration on the Business Gateway initiative, SBA developed a
  project charter that addresses the goals of the initiative, its benefits,
  project components, and critical success factors. However, the charter
  does not define an interagency approach to managing the initiative,
  discuss participants’ roles and responsibilities, or establish
  collaborative decision-making processes. According to the Internal
  Revenue Service’s (IRS) representative to the project, the charter
  contains no specific assignment of responsibilities—it was developed
  only to document general support for the concept of the initiative.
  Without a well-defined decision-making process, including specified
  roles and responsibilities, designated partner agencies may be unwilling
  to make significant commitments to supporting the goals and objectives
  of the initiative.

• Maintaining collaborative relationships. SBA has not yet established
  mechanisms to maintain effective relationships with its agency partners
  or other stakeholders. Although it reached agreements in 2002 with four
  of its nine federal partner agencies, those agreements specified single,
  limited-scope project tasks rather than establishing working
  relationships with a common vision for the initiative. For example,



Page 37                                             GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
   SBA’s memorandum of understanding with IRS was to develop a pilot
   program under which small businesses could apply for Federal
   Employer Identification Numbers via the Internet rather than by mail or
   fax. Similarly, SBA’s agreement with the Occupational Safety and Health
   Administration was to develop a tool to help small businesses comply
   with emergency standards. Further, SBA has not yet established formal
   agreements with organizations that represent small businesses, such as
   the American Trucking Association, the Owner-Operator Independent
   Drivers Association, or the National Private Truck Council—all of whom
   represent the ultimate intended beneficiaries of the initiative’s services.
   According to the OMB portfolio manager for government-to-business
   initiatives, the project has not been able to establish formal
   collaboration agreements because key management components, such
   as partner agency roles and responsibilities, have not yet been defined.
   Without well-defined mechanisms for collaboration, the project risks
   not meeting the needs of partner agencies or gaining their commitment
   to continue supporting the project.

• Contributing resources equitably. SBA also has not developed a
  strategy for sharing resource commitments across its partner agencies.
  On the contrary, the project manager’s strategy has relied solely on SBA
  to fund the initiative. According to the OMB government-to-business
  portfolio manager, SBA’s strategy was to promote collaboration by not
  burdening potential partners with financial responsibilities for the
  initiative. However, in taking on all financial responsibility, SBA also
  took control of decision-making responsibility, which reduced agency
  collaboration. Officials from designated partner agencies told us that
  because they did not provide funds for the initiative, they have had little
  input in the decision-making process and, as a result, do not have a
  strong incentive to participate in the Business Gateway. Without the
  involvement of partner agencies, the initiative risks not being able to
  achieve its broader objective of providing small businesses with a single
  integrated source for compliance with federal regulations.

• Facilitating communication and outreach. The Business Gateway
  initiative has produced examples of effective communication and
  outreach. For example, SBA designated the Environmental Protection
  Agency (EPA) to take the lead in developing the profiler, which is
  intended to gather information about a user’s business (such as type of
  business, number of employees, and so on) to aid in providing focused
  assistance. Based on comments from participating agency
  representatives, EPA has been effective at leading communication and



Page 38                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
   outreach for that task. EPA established a cross-agency workgroup that
   meets weekly to discuss progress, make decisions, and address the next
   steps with regard to development of the module. The profiler module
   workgroup members also routinely coordinate via e-mail and telephone,
   and EPA communicates updated information on development of the
   profiler module at projectwide team meetings. Participants in the
   workgroup told us they found that these meetings and briefings by EPA
   were an effective means for collaboration. For example, according to
   the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s representative on
   the profiler workgroup, EPA did an excellent job of facilitating
   consensus as to next steps, specifying what tasks were to be done by
   participants, following up on performance, and relaying information or
   requests from SBA.

   However, despite subgroup examples such as this, communication and
   outreach by SBA to partners and stakeholders projectwide remain
   limited, with key decision makers not having access to up-to-date
   information about the initiative. For example, according to the trucking
   module leader, key agency decision makers were not involved in
   meetings, conference calls, and monthly workgroup meetings, and
   therefore agency participants were limited in their ability to support the
   initiative because they could not make resource commitments. More
   specifically, federal agency decision makers were often not present at
   meetings where decisions, such as those on the costs and schedule,
   were made for the initiative. As a result, project issues could not be
   effectively discussed and resolved, slowing progress and hindering
   collaboration.

• Adopting a common set of standards. The Business Gateway project
  team has adopted existing data and technical standards when they were
  available. For example, the team examined the technical reference
  model associated with the OMB-sponsored Federal Enterprise
  Architecture to identify relevant standards and ensure that technical
  elements of the gateway were compatible with the Federal Enterprise
  Architecture. In cases where standards were not previously defined, the
  project team either reached agreement or began a process to reach
  agreement on ad hoc standards. For example, EPA and the Department
  of Energy agreed to use the same set of basic key words to direct
  inquiries by users on topics related to environmental protection
  regulations. These practices are in line with key practices that we
  identified for adopting common sets of standards.




Page 39                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
              The collaboration challenges faced by the Business Gateway project may
              have contributed to the slow progress on recent work. Specifically, the lack
              of well-defined roles and responsibilities may have inhibited the
              stakeholder participation necessary to complete tasks on schedule. The
              lack of shared responsibility for funding the project may have also limited
              stakeholder commitment. In addition, limited communication and outreach
              left key partners and stakeholders ill-informed about the initiative’s
              progress and development issues.



Conclusions   Each of the four e-government initiatives has made progress toward
              achieving its overall objectives. A number of early goals have been
              achieved, including establishing Web portals such as www.geodata.gov for
              the Geospatial One-Stop initiative and www.BusinessLaw.gov for the
              Business Gateway project. All four initiatives rely on cross-agency
              collaboration, and they still have a number of tasks to complete, some of
              which require extensive interorganizational cooperation and could be very
              challenging.

              In our assessment of previous research into cross-organizational
              collaboration, five broad key practices emerged as being of critical
              importance. These practices include establishing a collaborative
              management structure, maintaining collaborative relationships,
              contributing resources equitably, facilitating communication and outreach,
              and adopting a common set of standards.

              When assessed according to these practices, the record for the four
              e-government initiatives is mixed. In some cases, the practices were
              effectively used, whereas in other cases project managers did not take full
              advantage of them. For example, while OPM has taken steps to promote
              close collaboration with its four designated e-Payroll providers, it has not
              fully addressed the concerns of a key stakeholder that may be required to
              make costly changes to its payroll processes and policies in response to
              OPM’s decisions. Interior has instituted a board of directors for Geospatial
              One-Stop that includes certain state and local representatives, but it has
              not yet established formal agreements with all of its federal partners or
              developed an outreach plan to encourage a broad range of states and
              localities to participate in the initiative. GSA has adopted a variety of
              effective collaboration practices on the Integrated Acquisition
              Environment project, but it has not yet fully involved CFOs from partner
              agencies. Finally, SBA has not yet taken important steps—including
              defining roles and responsibilities, establishing formal agreements with



              Page 40                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                      federal partner agencies, and establishing a funding strategy based on
                      shared resource commitments—to facilitate effective collaboration with its
                      partners and stakeholders. Until these issues are addressed, the initiatives
                      may be at risk of not fully achieving their goals.



Recommendations for   To enhance the effectiveness of collaboration as a tool for the four
                      e-government initiatives to use in achieving their goals, we recommend that
Executive Action
                      • the Director of OPM (1) institute a review and feedback process with VA
                        to ensure that its concerns are reviewed and addressed before decisions
                        are made that could have a policy or resource impact on agency payroll
                        operations, and (2) ensure that a collaborative process is in place for
                        development of governmentwide payroll standards;

                      • the Secretary of the Interior establish formal agreements with federal
                        agency partners to clarify collaborative relationships and develop an
                        outreach plan for the Geospatial One-Stop initiative that includes
                        specific tasks for contacting and interacting with a wider range of state
                        and local government GIS officials to facilitate and explain the benefits
                        of broad participation in the initiative and promote the use of federal
                        geospatial data standards;

                      • the Administrator, GSA, modify the structure of its working groups and
                        other communication mechanisms for the Integrated Acquisition
                        Environment initiative to fully include the CFOs of partner agencies and
                        better ensure that agreed-upon partner resource contributions are
                        made; and

                      • the Administrator, SBA, establish a more collaborative management
                        structure for the Business Gateway initiative by defining roles and
                        responsibilities, establishing formal collaboration agreements with
                        federal agency partners, developing a shared funding strategy, and
                        implementing projectwide communication and outreach mechanisms to
                        ensure that key decision makers at partner agencies are kept informed
                        and involved in the management of the project.



Agency Comments and   We received written comments on a draft of this report from the Director of
                      OPM; Interior’s Assistant Secretary Policy, Management and Budget; and
Our Evaluation        SBA’s Program Executive Officer for e-Government. We also received oral



                      Page 41                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
comments from the Administrator of GSA. All four agencies generally
agreed with our discussion of the collaboration challenges facing
e-government initiatives. In addition, each of the agencies provided
comments and additional or updated information about collaboration
activities associated with their initiatives, as well as technical comments,
which have been incorporated into the final report where appropriate.

OPM stated that it was concerned with our assessment that e-Payroll had
not been fully effective in taking steps to promote collaboration with
partner agencies. In the report, we noted that OPM has taken steps to
develop and maintain collaborative relationships with its partners and
focused our concern on OPM’s relationship with VA. Concerning our
recommendation that OPM institute a review and feedback process with
VA to ensure that concerns are addressed, OPM reported that such a
process has been established and that it would continue to hold
discussions with VA. In addition, concerning our recommendation that
OPM ensure that a collaborative process is in place for the development of
governmentwide payroll standards, we noted in the final report OPM’s
position that it has taken steps to help ensure a collaborative standards
development process by establishing a cross-agency focus group to address
standards setting issues. If supported by a detailed strategy, OPM’s actions
may help to address the issues we raised. OPM also provided technical
comments, which we have incorporated as appropriate.

Interior stated that it agreed with our assessment that e-government
projects face many challenges and that Geospatial One-Stop had made
substantial progress in achieving its initial objectives and goals. Interior
also acknowledged that it had not resolved all the challenges in gaining
greater collaboration on the part of the potential stakeholders at the state
and local levels. Interior stated that, in several ways, the draft report had
mischaracterized the Geospatial One-Stop project as being “federal-
centric.” We do not believe that the report characterizes the initiative in this
way. Rather, the focus is on the challenge of gaining as broad participation
as possible from state and local representatives, a task that Interior agrees
is challenging. Interior’s Assistant Secretary, Policy, Management and
Budget, also stated that the agency disagreed that the existence of formal
agreements is key to sustaining a vision and making progress. However,
Interior noted in its comments that it had established memorandums of
agreement or funding agreements with each of its partner agencies.
Further, our research into key collaboration practices revealed that formal
agreements with a clear purpose, common performance outputs, and




Page 42                                       GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
realistic performance measures are useful in providing a firm management
foundation for collaboration.

GSA concurred with our recommendation regarding the Integrated
Acquisition Environment initiative. GSA provided additional information
about its planned activities to address our recommendation as well as
updated information about the status of the initiative. This information has
been incorporated in the final report as appropriate.

SBA provided several suggested technical corrections to the draft report,
and we have made those corrections in the final report where appropriate.
In its comments, SBA officials stated that the project manager believed that
slow progress in 2003 was due primarily to lack of funding from within SBA
and the addition of tasks by OMB, rather than to any shortcomings in
collaboration, and that efforts at collaboration had been made until funding
for the project became problematic. We have clarified in the final report
that the funding shortfall was within SBA and not due to a lack of funding
contributions from partner agencies. However, as noted in the report, the
fact that partner agencies did not share resource commitments for the
Business Gateway limited their overall commitment to and involvement in
the project, thus putting the project at risk of not meeting its objectives.


As agreed with your offices, unless you publicly announce its contents
earlier, we plan no further distribution of this report until 30 days from the
date of this report. At that time, we will send copies to the Ranking
Minority Member, House Committee on Government Reform, and the
Ranking Minority Member, Subcommittee on Technology, Information
Policy, Intergovernmental Relations and the Census. In addition, we will
provide copies to the Directors of OMB and OPM, the Secretary of the
Interior, and the Administrators of GSA and SBA. Copies will be made
available to others on request. In addition, this report will be available at no
charge on the GAO Web site at www.gao.gov.

If you should have any questions concerning this report, please call me at
(202) 512-6240 or send e-mail to koontzl@gao.gov. Key contributors to this




Page 43                                       GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
report were Shannin Addison, Neha Bhavsar, Barbara Collier,
Felipe Colón, Jr., Larry Crosland, John de Ferrari, and Elizabeth Roach.




Linda D. Koontz
Director, Information Management Issues




Page 44                                    GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Appendix I

Objectives, Scope, and Methodology                                                           AA
                                                                                              ppp
                                                                                                ep
                                                                                                 ned
                                                                                                   n
                                                                                                   x
                                                                                                   id
                                                                                                    e
                                                                                                    x
                                                                                                    Iis




              Our objectives were to assess (1) the progress that has been made to date
              in implementing the selected initiatives, (2) the major factors that can
              affect successful collaboration on e-government initiatives, and (3) the
              extent to which federal agencies and other entities have been collaborating
              on the selected initiatives.

              We considered several factors in selecting the four initiatives for our
              review. These factors included the number of potential collaborating
              agencies, reported costs of the initiatives, variety among the types initiative
              categories (i.e., “government to citizen,” “government to business,”
              “government to government,” “internal efficiency and effectiveness,” and
              “cross-cutting”), potential cost savings from implementing the initiatives,
              variety among managing partners, and variety among the kinds of
              stakeholders. Based on a consideration of these factors, we selected the
              following four initiatives: e-Payroll, Geospatial One-Stop, Integrated
              Acquisition Environment, and Business Gateway.

              To assess the progress of the initiatives, we reviewed capital asset plans
              and other project documentation, conducted interviews with project
              officials, and assessed electronic services made available to customers to
              date. In addition to determining the status of planned milestones, we
              evaluated the progress that had been made in achieving the overall
              objectives of each initiative within the framework of the e-government
              strategy of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

              To identify key practices affecting collaboration on e-government
              initiatives, we developed criteria through a review of government,
              academic, and private sector literature on interorganizational
              collaboration. We provided these criteria to officials of OMB’s Office of
              Information and Regulatory Affairs, who agreed that the criteria were
              reasonable for assessing collaboration on e-government initiatives. Based
              on these criteria, we summarized individual key practices (i.e., those
              practices that were most commonly cited among our sources) into five
              broad practices: establishing a collaborative management structure,
              maintaining collaborative relationships, contributing resources equitably,
              facilitating communication and outreach, and reaching agreement on a
              common set of standards.

              To assess the extent to which federal agencies and other entities were
              collaborating on the selected e-government initiatives, we reviewed project
              documents related to collaboration, such as communication strategies and
              memorandums of understanding. We conducted interviews with project



              Page 45                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Appendix I
Objectives, Scope, and Methodology




managers for each of the initiatives we reviewed, as well as with officials
from the four managing partner agencies and OMB’s portfolio managers, to
determine collaborative management practices that were in place. We also
contacted project officials from the initiatives’ partner agencies, as well as
the National States Geographic Information Council (regarding Geospatial
One-Stop) and representatives from small business associations (regarding
Business Gateway). We collected information from these entities to
determine the extent to which key collaboration practices were being used
effectively for the four initiatives we studied.

Our work was conducted from December 2002 to September 2003 in
accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards.




Page 46                                      GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Appendix II

Source Materials for Key Collaboration
Practices                                                                                            Appendx
                                                                                                           Ii




                         Following are the source documents that we consulted in identifying the
                         key collaboration practices described in the body of the report.



GAO Reports              Program Evaluation: An Evaluation Culture and Collaborative
                         Partnerships Help Build Agency Capacity. GAO-03-454. Washington, D.C.:
                         May 2, 2003.

                         Results-Oriented Management: Agency Crosscutting Actions and Plans
                         in Drug Control, Family Poverty, Financial Institution Regulation, and
                         Public Health Systems. GAO-03-320. Washington, D.C.: December 20, 2002.

                         Results-Oriented Management: Agency Crosscutting Actions and Plans
                         in Border Control, Flood Mitigation and Insurance, Wetlands, and
                         Wildland Fire Management. GAO-03-321. Washington, D.C.: December 20,
                         2002.

                         September 11: More Effective Collaboration Could Enhance Charitable
                         Organizations’ Contributions in Disasters. GAO-03-259. Washington,
                         D.C.: December 19, 2002.

                         At-Risk Youth: School-Community Collaborations Focus on Improving
                         Student Outcomes. GAO-01-66. Washington, D.C.: October 10, 2000.

                         Head Start and Even Start: Greater Collaboration Needed on Measures of
                         Adult Education and Literacy. GAO-02-348. Washington, D.C.: March 29,
                         2002.

                         Human Services Integration: Results of a GAO Cosponsored Conference
                         on Modernizing Information Systems. GAO-02-121. Washington, D.C.:
                         January 31, 2002.

                         Defense Health Care: Collaboration and Criteria Needed for Sizing
                         Graduate Medical Education. GAO/HEHS-98-121. Washington, D.C.:
                         April 29, 1998.



Federal Agency Studies   Congressional Research Service, The Library of Congress. Federal
                         Interagency Coordination Mechanisms: Varied Types and Numerous
                         Devices. July 22, 2002. http://www.congress.gov/erp/rl/pdf/RL31357.pdf
                         (viewed July 2003).



                         Page 47                                   GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Appendix II
Source Materials for Key Collaboration
Practices




Federal Enterprise Architecture Working Group. E-Gov Enterprise
Architecture Guidance. Draft-Version 2.0. July 25, 2002.
http://www.feapmo.gov/resources/E-Gov_Guidance_Final_Draft_v2.0.pdf
(viewed July 2003).

Federal Highway Administration, Office of Travel Management, Office of
Operations (Department of Transportation). The Practice of Regional
Transportation Operations Collaboration and Coordination. May 7, 2003.
www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/RegionalTransOpsCollaboration/note.htm (viewed
August 2003).

Food and Drug Administration (Department of Health and Human
Services). An Agency Resource for Effective Collaborations: The
Leveraging Handbook. June 2003.
www.fda.gov/oc/leveraging/handbook.pdf (viewed July 2003).

General Services Administration. Building Blocks for Successful
Intergovernmental Programs. August 29, 2001.
www.gsa.gov/Portal/content/pubs_content.jsp?contentOID=119122&conte
ntType=1008 (viewed July 2003).

Hodges, S., T. Nesman, and M. Hernandez. Promising Practices: Building
Collaboration in Systems of Care. A special report prepared at the request
of the Department of Health and Human Services. 1999.
www.mentalhealth.org/cmhs/ChildrensCampaign/PDFs/1998monographs/v
ol6.pdf (viewed July 2003).

Institute for Educational Leadership. Building Effective Community
Partnerships. A special report prepared at the request of the Office of
Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of Justice Programs,
U.S. Department of Justice.
www.ojjdp.ncjrs.org/resources/files/toolkit1final.pdf (viewed July 2003).

Intergovernmental Advisory Board (General Services Administration).
Federal, State and Local Government Experiences: Foundations for
Successful Intergovernmental Management. October 1998.
www.gsa.gov/cm_attachments/GSA_PUBLICATIONS/Main_8_R2AV262_0Z
5RDZ-i34K-pR.doc (viewed July 2003).

Joint Chiefs of Staff (Department of Defense). Concept for Future Joint
Operations: Expanding Joint Vision 2010. May 1997.
www.dtic.mil/jointvision/history/cfjoprn1.pdf (viewed July 2003).



Page 48                                    GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                        Appendix II
                        Source Materials for Key Collaboration
                        Practices




                        Joint History Office, Joint Chiefs of Staff (Department of Defense). The
                        History of the Unified Command Plan 1946–1993. February 1995.
                        www.dtic.mil/doctrine/jel/history/ucp.pdf (viewed July 2003).

                        National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (Department of
                        Transportation). Keys to Success: State Highway Safety and EMS
                        Agencies Working Together to Improve Public Health. August 2000.
                        www.nhtsa.dot.gov/people/injury/ems/pub3/index.htm (viewed July 2003).

                        Office of Intergovernmental Solutions, General Services Administration,
                        Government Without Boundaries: A Management Approach to
                        Intergovernmental Programs (May 23, 2002).

                        Office of Regulatory Affairs, Food and Drug Administration (Department of
                        Health and Human Services). Partnership Agreements. October 2002.
                        www.nhtsa.dot.gov/people/injury/ems/pub3/index.htm (viewed July
                        2003).

                        Rinehard, Tammy A., Anna T. Laszlo, and Gwen O. Briscoe. Collaboration
                        Toolkit: How to Build, Fix, and Sustain Productive Partnerships. A
                        special report prepared at the request of U.S. Department of Justice, Office
                        of Community Oriented Policing Services. 2001.
                        www.cops.usdoj.gov/default.asp?item=344 (viewed July 2003).



International, State,   Biedell, Jeff, David Evans, Daniela Ionova-Swider, Jonathan Littlefield,
                        John Mulligan, and Je Ryong Oh. Facilitating Cross Agency Collaboration.
and Local Agency        Smith School of Business, University of Maryland. December 2001.
Studies                 www.estrategy.gov/documents/fall_report-collaboration_121101.pdf
                        (viewed July 2003).

                        Center for Technology in Government. Tying a Sensible Knot: Best
                        Practices in State-Local Information Systems, Executive Briefing, 2001.
                        University at Albany/SUNY.

                        Collaboration: Because It’s Good for Children and Families: A Wisconsin
                        Resource Manual. www.collaboratingpartners.com/CollabManDemo.pdf
                        (viewed August 2003).

                        Dawes, Sharon S., Theresa A. Pardo, David R. Connelly, Darryl F. Green,
                        and Claire R. McInerney. Partners in State and Local Information
                        Systems: Lessons from the Field. Center for Technology in Government.



                        Page 49                                     GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
                         Appendix II
                         Source Materials for Key Collaboration
                         Practices




                         University at Albany/SUNY. October 1997.
                         www.ctg.albany.edu/publications/reports/partners_in_sli/partners_in_sli.p
                         df (viewed July 2003).

                         Industry Advisory Council. Cross-Jurisdictional Government
                         Implementations. September 2002. www.iaconline.org/pdfs/X-
                         Juris_eGov.pdf (viewed July 2003).

                         La Vigne, Mark, David R. Connelly, Donna S. Canestraro, and Theresa A.
                         Pardo. Reassessing New York: A Collaborative Process. Center for
                         Technology in Government. University at Albany/SUNY. June 2000.
                         www.ctg.albany.edu/publications/reports/reassessing_ny/reassessing_ny.p
                         df (viewed July 2003).

                         Treasury Board of Canada. The Federal Government as “Partner”: Six
                         Steps to Successful Collaboration. November 1995. www.tbs-
                         sct.gc.ca/pubs_pol/opepubs/TB_O3/dwnld/fgpe_e.rtf (viewed July 2003).

                         UK Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions (DTLR)
                         and JSS Pinnacle (now Pinnacle psg). Partnership: A Working Definition.
                         Partnership Series, Paper Number 1. October 1998 www.pinnacle-
                         psg.com/documents/consultancy/so_consultancy_publications_detr_paper
                         1.pdf (viewed July 2003).



Private Sector Studies   Axner, Marya, and Bill Berkowitz. Promoting Coordination, Cooperative
                         Agreements and Collaborative Agreements Among Agencies. Community
                         Tool Box. University of Kansas.
                         ctb.ukans.edu/tools/en/sub_section_main_1229.htm (viewed July 2003).

                         Bailey, Darlyne, and Kelley McNally Koney. Interorganizational
                         Community Based Collaboration: A Strategic Response to Shape the
                         Social Work Agenda. Social Work, Volume 41, Issue 6, 1996.

                         Bardach, Eugene. Getting Agencies to Work Together: The Practice and
                         Theory of Managerial Craftsmanship. Brookings Institution Press, 1998.




                         Page 50                                   GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
Appendix II
Source Materials for Key Collaboration
Practices




Baum, C., and A. Di Maio. Sharing Risk: Government/Business
Partnerships. Gartner (www.gartner.com),1 October 25, 2002.

Cameron, Marsaili, and Steve Cranfield. Unlocking the Potential: Effective
Partnerships for Improving Health. NHS-Executive North Thames,
September 1998. www.doh.gov.uk/pub/docs/doh/unlomain.pdf (viewed July
2003).

Chrislip, David D., and Carl E. Larson. Collaborative Leadership: How
Citizens and Civic Leaders Can Make a Difference. San Francisco:
Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1994.

Gray, Barbara, and Eric Trist. Collaborating: Finding Common Ground for
Multiparty Problems. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1989.

Keller, B. Breaking Down the Walls: Collaboration in the Public Sector.
Gartner (www.gartner.com), October 5, 2001.

Keller, B., F. Caldwell, and C. Baum. Mr. President, Take Down Those
E-Government Roadblocks. Gartner (www.gartner.com), March 2, 2001.

Mahoney, J. Public Sector: Beware of Incompatible Partners. Gartner
(www.gartner.com), September 18, 2002.

Mattessich, Paul W., Marta Murray-Close, and Barbara R. Monsey.
Collaboration: What Makes IT Work, 2nd ed. Saint Paul, Minnesota: Wilder
Publishing Center, 2001.

Peterson, K. Determining Your Role in C-Commerce Relationships.
Gartner (www.gartner.com), October 12, 2001.

Phelan, P. Implementing Best Practices for Collaborative Processes.
Gartner (www.gartner.com), October 22, 2002.

Scardino, L., and G. Kreizman. Innovation Funds: A Model for
E-Government. Gartner (www.gartner.com), February 16, 2001.




1
Gartner studies are available for purchase at the Gartner Web site, www.gartner.com.




Page 51                                            GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
           Appendix II
           Source Materials for Key Collaboration
           Practices




           Schumaker, Alice, B. J. Reed, and Sara Woods. “Collaborative Models for
           Metropolitan University Outreach: The Omaha Experience.” Cityscape: A
           Journal of Policy Development and Research, Volume 5, Number 1, 2000.

           Smith, Alan. Collaboration between Educational Institutions: Can
           Various Individual Successes Translate into a Broad Range of Sustained
           Partnerships? University of Southern Queensland.
           www.com.unisa.edu.au/cccc/papers/refereed/paper44/Paper44-1.htm
           (viewed July 2003).

           University of Vermont. Strengthening Community Collaborations:
           Essentials for Success. crs.uvm.edu/nnco/cd/collabh3.htm (viewed July
           2003).




(310359)   Page 52                                  GAO-04-6 E-Government Collaboration
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