A report from the administration says that process improvements under the President’s Management Agenda cross-agency priority goal to shift from low-value to high-value work will result in savings of billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of federal employee workhours.
The report lists some 100 initiatives from 24 departments and major agencies including “more than 50 focused on process improvement and standardization, approximately 30 using robotics process automation, artificial intelligence, and/or other innovative software, and nearly 20 focused on the digitalization of process within an agency.”
In dollar terms, the largest estimated impact is a potential savings of $5.7 billion in costs to the medical community through reducing administrative burdens, while the greatest savings in federal employee work was reported at the GSA, which said it has saved some 230,000 hours by using robotics to “manage tasks like opening email, moving files, making calculations, and filling in forms.”
Among the other central agencies, it says that OMB saved other agencies an estimated 3,000 hours by relieving them of some reporting requirements on programs deemed to be too small to be at risk of significant improper payments, and OPM saved more than 9,000 hours by improving the automation of criminal history checks performed by its National Background Investigations Bureau, an entity that since has been merged into the Defense Department.
DHS saved more than 3,000 hours by eliminating an annual report to Congress that largely duplicated information also in other reports, it says, and HUD saved more than 2,000 hours by using robotics to “improve financial controls and reduce the time required to prepare financial statements.”