NewsBrief: November 11, 2022

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Cost Estimating NewsBrief: November 11, 2022

How costly is federal paperwork? Well, this is costly.

(Federal News Network) Digital services and modernization are pillars of the Biden administration’s management agenda. These efforts don’t just matter to federal agencies, though, business is thoroughly behind efforts to streamline government services. In fact, the Chamber of Commerce has put some numbers on what paperwork costs the economy each year, and how many hours it eats up. Here with the details, Chamber Vice President Jordan Crenshaw talked to the Federal Drive with Tom Temin. Read More

How to Reinvigorate the National Security Community One Young Worker at a Time

(Government Executive) At a conference several months ago, I was sitting in a conversation about talent management when the speaker, in all seriousness, asked the group, “So what if my best employee doesn’t make enough money to afford his own place? Why can’t we have more patriotic Americans like him who are willing to work for the government and live in their parents’ basement?” I was appalled, but unfortunately this is a sentiment I’ve heard far too often even from senior leaders in the Department of Defense. Increasingly, this sentiment reflects the dearth of young, civilian, Millennial and Gen Z workers entering national security jobs both in federal service and private industry supporting government. Read More

How agencies are trying to keep early-career employees in federal jobs

(Federal News Network) With millennial and Generation Z employees projected to comprise a large portion of the U.S. workforce by 2025, the Office of Personnel Management is pushing forward on more incentives to recruit and retain early-career federal employees. It’s particularly important right now, said OPM Director Kiran Ahuja, because of the current imbalance in how many early-career employees there are in the federal workforce, versus the nationwide workforce. “We track much lower than the private sector by a wide margin,” Ahuja said at a National Academy of Public Administration event on Nov. 2. “Attracting early career talent is a priority for me. It is a priority for the President’s Management Council. It’s a central part of the President’s Management Agenda.” Read More

AI, Data Analytics Star as Biggest Planned Investments for 2023

(Nextgov) 2023 stands to see a continued investment and development in emerging technology systems, with artificial intelligence leading the technologies private companies are planning to leverage. Detailed in a new 2023 industry forecast from Info-Tech Research Group, an IT analyst firm, private sector companies are expected to continue adopting more advanced technologies into their everyday business operations, regardless of any broader economic slowdowns. Read More

IOT cyber rule covering federal buyers about to take effect

(FCW) Under a 2020 law that goes into effect in December, the federal government will leverage its procurement powers to bolster minimum cybersecurity standards for Internet of Things devices. Katerina Megas, program manager of NIST’s IoT cybersecurity program, said on Tuesday that agencies have until next month to meet minimum cybersecurity requirements published last year after Congress passed the IoT Cybersecurity Improvement Act of 2020. The legislation directed NIST to publish standards and guidelines for agencies on best practices for the use and management of IoT devices. Read More

For federal employees, adopting new technology takes a leap of faith

(Federal News Network) Federal workers increasingly have access to sophisticated artificial intelligence and machine learning software that will make their jobs easier and more streamlined. But in both public and private sector offices, managers say that finding workers with the sophistication to use those tools hinders the process of implementing them. “Finding qualified candidates with the education, training and experience in the desired area of computer science or business analytics is always a challenge. And it’s more challenging now,” said Michelle Thomas, deputy chief technology officer at the Labor Department. She spoke at a recent webinar hosted by the Advanced Technology Academic Research Center. Read More

What’s that smell? Broccoli emits gas that could signal presence of alien life

( If there is a planet or moon crawling with extraterrestrial life-forms that are anything like life as we know it, they might act like broccoli. Alien broccoli? Not exactly. There is now another potential biosignature that could reveal signs of life on far-off worlds. Methylation is a process used by broccoli, algae and many other plants and microbes on Earth to purge toxins by morphing them into gases. These same gases, if present in the atmospheres of exoplanets, could potentially be detected by instruments such as those aboard the James Webb Space Telescope. Planetary scientist Michaela Leung of UC Riverside recently led a study that determined it is highly unlikely these gases could be emitted by anything that is not alive. Read More

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