Federal Manager's Daily Report

GAO has found only “mixed” progress toward achieving the goals of the data center consolidation initiative, with 13 of the 24 departments and major agencies having met the OMB-assigned closure goals through fiscal 2018 and the rest not even having firm plans for how they could achieve them.

“In addition, the 24 agencies reported limited progress against OMB’s five data center optimization targets for server utilization and automated monitoring, energy metering, power usage effectiveness, facility utilization, and virtualization,” a report said. The results were more positive regarding savings, reaching $2.4 billion of the $2.7 billion goal for 2016-2018, although three agencies did not report any achieved savings.

The initiative began in 2010 and has been revised several times since, with the reported numbers of such centers and their operating costs changing as definitions changed and as more attention focused on them, GAO noted.

In a closer look at six agencies with the most success–Agriculture, Commerce, Justice, EPA and GSA–it found common elements including “obtaining executive leadership support, employing an organization-wide communications plan and applying lessons learned previously. But GAO added that following its prior reviews, agencies overall “have taken limited action” to address its recommendations.