April 7, 2010 - Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano today announced two new employee-generated Efficiency Review (ER) initiatives to cut costs, streamline operations and enhance the Department’s ability to fulfill its security mission—including an initiative to distribute earnings and leave statements electronically rather than by postal mail.
“Through the Efficiency Review, we have changed the way the federal government does business—cutting costs, streamlining operations and promoting greater accountability, transparency and customer satisfaction,” said Secretary Napolitano. “These initiatives will build on our ongoing efforts to build a culture of responsibility and fiscal discipline to make DHS a leaner, smarter agency better equipped to protect the nation.”
The two new initiatives announced today involve transitioning to paperless earnings and leave statements across the Department to avoid unnecessary printing and mailing costs and implementing efficiencies to reduce the time and costs associated with the personnel security and suitability processes—including establishing reciprocity of clearances for those coming to DHS from other federal agencies and law enforcement entities, as well as for contractors converting to federal staff.
In response to DHS’ development of the paperless earnings and leave initiative, the Office of Management and Budget has directed the National Finance Center to change the default government-wide civilian employee setting for earnings and leave statements from paper to electronic. When implemented, OMB expects this change will save the federal government approximately $4 million dollars annually.
Since Secretary Napolitano launched the Efficiency Review in March 2009, DHS has implemented 20 Efficiency Review initiatives department-wide, including consolidating subscriptions of professional publications and newspapers; maximizing the use of government office space, teleconferencing and web-based tools for meetings; minimizing the physical printing and distribution of reports and documents that can be sent electronically or posted online; implementing energy efficiencies in facility management projects; and launching efforts to reduce the Department’s reliance on contractors and contract services to strengthen our Federal workforce.
Later in 2010, DHS will launch additional Efficiency Review initiatives based on suggestions from employees – included those submitted in response to President Obama’s first-ever SAVE award. In addition to the Department-wide initiatives currently underway, Secretary Napolitano continues to encourage employees and offices to develop additional ways to save money, streamline operations and increase transparency.