OMB looks to the next cycle

'We would look favorably on projects that identify a common business process and common solution,' OMB's Bob Haycock says.

Tom Fedor

The fiscal 2005 budget proposal had barely come off Government Printing Office presses before the administration's IT team was looking ahead to 2006.

A chief push will be cross-agency IT efforts. The Office of Management and Budget said its Federal Enterprise Architecture Management System (FEAMS) will contain enough information that agencies can use it to craft business cases for cross-agency projects for their fiscal 2006 budget requests.

So far, OMB has been able to identify projects that could be combined only after reviewing agencies' budget submissions and then suggesting collaborations.

'We would look favorably on projects that identify a common business process and common solution,' said Bob Haycock, OMB's chief architect. 'That is when we know we have succeeded with the FEA. It is not occurring yet, and it will take time.'

For the 2005 budget cycle, OMB identified a number of collaborative opportunities. 'We will do that each year, and that is how we will move down the road,' Haycock said.

OMB will populate FEAMS by the middle of next month, Haycock said during a recent enterprise architecture conference in Arlington, Va., sponsored by Compuware Corp. of Detroit. The implementation of the architecture management system is the culmination of a two-year process to complete five FEA reference models, which represent the separate layers of the federal architecture. Haycock said OMB will release the Data Reference Model'the final layer'to agencies for comment next month and finish revising the four other reference models in time for the 2006 budget cycle.

OMB also will release recommendations to measure how ingrained systems blueprints are in agencies, Haycock said.

The guide will differ from the General Accounting Office's EA Framework, he said. 'GAO's [guide] is more process-based and looks at the structure of the agency,' Haycock said. 'We want to look at the actual EA and focus on how it is used.'

OMB will use GAO's framework and the new guide it is developing to gauge agencies' progress toward implementing architectures in their daily operations, Haycock said.

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