National Partnership for Reinventing Government
Department of Justice
Attorney General Janet RenoDepartment of Justice employees participating on Hammer Award winning teams have met some of the Department's most demanding challenges with innovative solutions.
DOJ's extraordinary efforts have improved the quality of law enforcement services that DOJ provides its customers, the American public.
Over 30 Hammer Award Teams have been led by employees of the Department of Justice, and employees of DOJ have played major roles on at least 15 other interagency Teams.
Reinvention initiatives at DOJ and at other departments and agencies have helped to change the culture of the federal government by giving all employees, especially those on the front-lines, an opportunity to improve the way government operates and serves its customers.
Since 1993, DOJ sponsored 19 reinvention laboratories.
Department of Defense
Secretary William CohenThe Department of Defense remains committed to the goals and principles of the National Partnership for Reinventing Government (NPR). NPR activities, coupled with the defense reform initiatives, have provided an excellent avenue for making significant strides in reforming the “business” of the Department while making more efficient use of the resources provided by the Congress and the American taxpayers.
One aspect of the Department’s commitment to reform is demonstrated by the Department’s receipt of approximately 475 Hammer Awards since 1993.
The Defense Working Capital Fund Reinvention Team was recognized for its efficient and cost cutting measures. Improvements included establishing clear customer/provider relationships, adopting private market mechanisms for resource management, and using standard accounting policies to display full costs. These improvements resulted in a 16 percent reduction in revolving (working capital) fund operations: costs tapered from $73 billion in Fiscal Year 1993 5o $61 billion in Fiscal Year 1999. Also, the number of people employed in logistics working capital fund operations dropped by 38 percent – from 290,310 to 179,634 positions during the same years.
Department of ArmyThe Soo Replacement Lock Study Team, Detroit Michigan, consisting of both Corps of Engineers employees and architect-engineer contractor personnel, effectively applied the principles of Vice President Gore’s National Partnership for Reinventing Government in reinventing a project critical to Great Lakes shipping. This team showed courage and innovation in abandoning significant portions of the original feasibility design to develop cost-efficient alternatives, achieving cost savings estimated at $116 million. The team designed a replacement lock, which incorporated new design elements and maximized the reuse of existing structures, avoiding demolition and dewatering cost.
The Army Publication Distribution Center created a quality management culture that involved employees in decision making, setting goals and measuring success. They reduced processing time from 15 to 5 days and saved over $1 million after the change.
Pine Bluff project office improved the process for maintaining a navigable waterway on over 250 miles of Arkansas River, combining new computer speed and software programs to reduce the time it took to map the ten miles of waterway from one week to three hours. They are still saving the District over $250,000 annually.
Department of NavyNAVSEA Port Hueneme Division, Modular Specifications System (M-SPECS) Team dramatically reengineered the Technical Manual Contract Requirement (TMCR) process and received the Hammer Award on June 7, 2000. The TMCR document provides the guiding framework that facilitates consistent use of style, format, content, and graphics for all technical manuals. The M-SPECS concept is based on creating a unique contractual document made up of paragraphs from existing specifications and standards.
The computer based M-SPECS Program has existed since 1981. At that time, customer input and the M-SPECS output was paper based and driven by the mail system, faxes, and multiple data entry. Although M-SPECS was an improvement over each acquisition manager making their own TMCRs, the nature of technical manual acquisition many times required fire drills of faxing data input forms, and using expensive overnight mail to meet deadlines.
The three person self-directed M-SPECS team members analyzed the process that produced TMCRs and determined that the 24-step process could be simplified to a paperless 4-step process by using the World Wide Web. The M-SPECS Team initiated and developed a new interactive web-based communication process that facilitates developing and tracking TMCRs. The new web-based process reduces the time to produce a TMCR from an average of 10-15 days down to 8 minutes.
Department of Air ForceSeamless integration can be typified by the team that evaluated the acquisition and support of the F-117, one the premier fighter aircraft in today’s inventory, at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. This team (F-117 Development Office, Air Force Material Command, and the Lockheed-Martin Skunk Works) reduced support costs, simplified contract data requirements, and instituted an unprecedented 50/50 cost-share arrangement between the Air Force and industry team – a dollar for dollar split for underrun costs! The results -- $80 Million saved, through program efficiencies, $90 Million in reduced personnel requirements (171 positions over 8 years), and the highest sustained readiness ratings of the fighter or bomber fleets assigned to the Air Combat Command.
While many agencies have been adjusting to the concept of doing more with less, a team has been identifying and evaluating information systems that enhance customer service while adapting to reductions in personnel available to surpass the current levels of service for commanders, supervisors and employees. Through the automation of previously labor intensive paper-based tracking programs, this team has provided greater access and near real-time accuracy to more diversified data – from pay and leave to experience and awards. This system also incorporated an electronic authentication capability for the Notification of Personnel Action Standard Form 50 (SF-50), adopted for DoD-wide implementation.
Marine CorpsA Hammer Award was presented to a team at Marine Corps Logistics Bases, Albany, GA in September 1995. The winning team (16 people) was the Ace-In-The Hole Gang led by Mr. Ron Kinson. The Ace-In-The-Hole-Gang radically redesigned the repair and rebuild of the High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) from a stall method, where almost all (excluding paint and body) of the work on a vehicle was performed at a fixed location or stall, to a production line method where vehicles moved from station to station where a specific set of items were worked on. Savings from this project was $2.7 million.
In 1995, the Transportation Management Office Team improved the adjudication of personal property claims. The team determined that the time it took from submittal of personal property claims to payment of the claim could be dramatically reduced if the claim was adjudicated at the command level vice forwarding it to Headquarters U.S. Marine Corps (HQMC), Washington, DC for adjudication. This could be accomplished by giving the claims clerks the authority to process claims of $1,000 or less, which accounts for about 85% of the claims received at the Base. The results: Processing of claims has been reduced to 12 days vice 120 days. Tangible benefits to the customer included significant reductions in processing time, more expeditious receipt of payment, and reduced workload at the HQMC Claims Processing Center. Between Jan 95 and Aug 95, 130 of the 180 claims were successfully adjudicated at the local command level.
Defense Logistics AgencyThe Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, received the NPR Hammer Award, the Public Employees Roundtable Award, and was one of the first federal agencies to be honored with the Innovations in American Government Award. DLA’s 100 Percent Closed Loop Wood Recycling Reinvention Lab improved the environment by recycling wood pallets, cleaning up a disposal site, and achieving significant savings. Partnerships with the U.S. Postal Service, Environmental Protection Agency, State of Pennsylvania and a local small business were influential in this lab’s success. This initiative received the NPR Hammer Award and the White House Closing the Circle Award. The Federal Travel Optimization Reinvention Lab is a software model (offsite) that was developed to improve the processes of analyzing travel costs and selecting the least expensive site for training events or conferences – 260 cities with government contract fares. Offsite has more than 660 registered users – organizations in DoD, other federal agencies, state governments, academia and the private sector and can be downloaded from a web site. Offsite was one of the recipients of the Government Executive Magazine’s Technology Leadership Award.
In the spirit of the Hammer Awards, DLA established a Scissors Award to recognize accomplishments of lesser scope, but worthy of an award.
Defense Finance and Accounting ServiceProject Refocus (1997) relieved managers of most of the processes associated with personnel management in order to free them to more effectively manage their programs, providing one-stop personnel servicing to better serve customers.
Operation Mongoose (1996) was the first national program formed to investigate financial fraud affecting the government. Operation Mongoose involves the Department of Defense (DoD), Secret Service, Internal Revenue Service, Social Security Administration, etc. Before Operation Mongoose, fraud investigations by disparate government agencies were uncoordinated.
The Denver-Cleveland Debt and Claims Management Team (1998) used the DFAS Strategic Business Plan to standardize, consolidate and improve the business process for debt management within the DoD. This involved the consolidation of all DoD individual out-of-service debt and claims management operations to support the Air Force, Army, Marine Corps, providing one-stop shopping for approximately 200,000 debtors and claimants formerly serviced at five other locations. Business process improvements, standardization of procedures, and appropriate use of technology, as well as economies of scale, are projected to save DoD $8.5 million annually in operating costs and over $1 million in systems costs.
The Retiree Death Gratuity Payments Team (1995) reduced death gratuity payment time from six months to six days.