Dec 31 2009

Is the CAO Council Certifiable?

Of course not! But the Chief Acquisition Officers Council is on a bandwagon to establish a base level of skills for the government’s procurement staffs — and ultimately program managers, too.

“It’s an overall issue and not just an interagency concern,” says Glenn Perry, procurement chief for the Education Department and vice chairman of the Chief Acquisition Officers Council. “We need to standardize capabilities.”

To that end, the council began the Federal Acquisition in Contracting Certification Program — FAC-C, for short.

The council’s plan is three-pronged and derived from the Defense Department’s acquisition workforce improvement program. The council set standards for the government’s contract specialists, and agencies are identifying where their workforces are falling short, Perry says. Next, the council will roll out standards for contracting officers’ technical representatives. For the final leg, the council will define training requirements for program managers — training specifically tied to the parts of their jobs that involve contracting.

Right now, certifications are not mandatory, but they will be by January 2007 for anyone to whom an agency issues a CO warrant.

“The goal is to get all agencies across government to work off the same training and development plan,” Perry says.

Want more details? Visit the Federal Acquisition Institute’s Web site at The Office of Management and Budget has tapped the institute to oversee FAC-C.

The Drive Is on for Telework

More Folks Are Doing It

Do you telework?

YES: 19% in 2005 versus 41% this year

NO: 81% in 2005 versus 59% this year

IT Workers ID Obstacles

What are the primary challenges associated with telework?*

*Total is more that 100 percent because respondents could select multiple answers.

For the survey, CDW•G, working with O’Keefe & Company of Alexandria, Va., interviewed 777 federal employees, of which 235 were IT professionals.

To get some pointers on how to make telework more secure from the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Rick Kuhn, read here.