IT security and management, and personnel management were included as areas of special concern on GAO’s most recent high-risk report – the latest annual government-wide report by agency inspectors general.
The Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency said that IT “is a long-standing, serious, and ubiquitous challenge for federal agencies across the government . . . due to significant impediments faced by federal agencies, including resource constraints and a shortage of cybersecurity professionals.”
“Key areas of concern are safeguarding sensitive data and information systems, networks, and assets against cyber-attacks and insider threats; modernizing and managing federal IT systems; ensuring continuity of operations; and recruiting and retaining a highly skilled cybersecurity workforce,” it says.
Personnel management in general “is a significant challenge that impacts the ability of federal agencies to meet their performance goals and to execute their missions efficiently. Key areas of concern include inadequate funding and staffing; recruiting, training, and retaining qualified staff; agency cultures that negatively impact the agency’s mission; and the impact of the lack of succession planning and high employee turnover.”
Other top areas of concern include financial management, homeland security and disaster preparedness, and procurement management.