Federal Agency CIOs' Roles Expand

Susan Hall

Federal agency CIOs not only have another boss, U.S. CIO Steven VanRoekel, but also expanded responsibilities, according to a memo by Jacob Lew, director of the Office of Management and Budget.


Nextgov.com quotes Lew, saying:

As the federal government implements the [25-point reform agenda of VanRoekel's predecessor Vivek Kundra], it is changing the role of agency chief information officers away from just policymaking and infrastructure maintenance, to encompass true portfolio management for all IT. This will enable CIOs to focus on delivering IT solutions that support the mission and business effectiveness of their agencies and overcome bureaucratic impediments to deliver enterprise-wide solutions.

The memo listed four areas in which agency CIOs should take the lead:

  • Governance of agencies' IT portfolios.
  • Commodity IT purchases.
  • Management of large IT projects and programs.
  • Information security programs.


In his first blog post since taking over for Kundra, VanRoekel notes that through their participation in the federal CIO Council, they also will be looking for ways to cut costs and eliminate wasteful spending across government, according to InformationWeek. The memo instructs the CIOs to "show a preference for using shared services as a provider or a consumer," rather than launching independent services.


The CIOs also will be responsible for the training and performance of the new IT program managers. This newly created job role is expected to be filled by highly paid senior executives with broad authority to ensure major IT initiatives are completed effectively.

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