White House to coordinate TMF, FCSF funding of shared services

Judith Zeng
Written by

Dave Nyczepir

The Office of Management and Budget wants to coordinate a pair of IT funds to improve shared services and create new ones, according to a plan released Friday.

By integrating insights from Technology Modernization Fund and Federal Citizen Services Fund projects, OMB intends to prioritize how they’re used to support shared services and programs.

The new strategy for the funds is laid out in OMB’s IT Operating Plan, required by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2022 to maximize the impact of congressionally approved funding.

“We are at a unique moment in time to drive digital transformation across the federal enterprise,” writes Clare Martorana, federal chief information officer, in the plan’s introduction. “We can deploy technology that is secure by design, reduces costs for agencies, eliminates administrative burden for both customers and the federal workforce, delivers government services that meet modern expectations for the American people, and inspires the next generation to serve our great country.”

OMB plans to use the FCSF to scale and modernize high-impact, governmentwide priority initiatives — in keeping with its short-term focus on high-impact service provider (HISP) services. Long term, OMB wants to improve designated cross-agency life experiences.

Shared services previously funded by other sources or agencies — like the Federal Audit Clearinghouse and Presidential Innovation Fellows Program — will be migrated to the FCSF, under the General Services Administration‘s purview.

GSA already intends to request amendments to FCSF appropriation language so services are reimbursable and the spending cap is increased for high-impact projects, after Congress kept its fiscal 2022 funding flat at $55 million.

Meanwhile, OMB will gather performance data on TMF IT modernization projects to inform efforts at all agencies and identify when new shared services are needed. GSA may develop them, or agencies may scale their own for adoption by other agencies with the Office of the CIO and U.S. Digital Service’s support.

OMB also plans to conduct enhanced readiness assessments, in which teams build rapid prototypes to test assumptions, to ensure they’re prepared for IT modernization.

Lastly, the office wants to demonstrate an effective TMF investment model to set new benchmarks for modernization projects.

“The [IT Oversight and Reform Account], TMF, and FCSF are key to enabling strategic-level execution of IT efforts and investments across federal agencies,” reads the plan. “The funds have different and complementary strengths that stem from their inherent purposes and variations in the operating models of the implementing organizations.”

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