The Federal Leaders Digital Insight Study, conducted by the National Academy of Public Administration (the Academy) in collaboration with ICF International, is the inaugural report designed to survey Federal Leaders' perspectives about the pace with which the government is adopting, applying, and leveraging technological advancements in service to its constituencies.
The Academy has convened an expert Panel of its Fellows to guide the Academy/ICF study team's design and implementation of the survey, study its results, and offer key findings and recommendations. The Federal Leaders Digital Insight Study addressed the following broad topic areas:
This study shows a federal workforce that is knowledgeable about digital technology, has seen productivity increases as a result of it, believes technology makes agencies more efficient, and that it helps government better serve the public. The findings reveal a number of challenges, including concerns that the government cannot keep pace with the rate of technological advances and the perception - not always supported by reality - that the private sector procures and adopts technologies more effectively. While some workers felt ever-present digital technology harmed private life, others thought it produced a much better work/life balance. Respondents clearly expressed the need for federal workers to receive training when digital technology is deployed and on-going training to maintain skills.
The Panel recognizes the challenging political environment in which the government operates and chose to avoid lofty recommendations that would require legislation or lengthy regulatory changes. These recommendations are based upon the Panel's decades of experience in and around government, and were chosen because they are practical, would result in dramatic improvements, and can be implemented now. Most are within the control of individual agencies.