Whether you are a Senior Real Property Officer, Director of Facilities or serve in any position as a federal real property management professional, you have a responsibility to promote the “efficient and economical use of America’s real property assets and to assure management accountability for implementing federal real property management reforms.”
This is no small task. In fact, it can seem overwhelming when considering the magnitude, breadth and complexity of the United States real property portfolio—and the limitations of the tools available to manage and protect it. The task has become even more challenging in recent years as stringent measures draw increased scrutiny on the high cost of federal real property (FRP) in this era of save time, save money, save lives, and save the planet.
The realities being faced by FRP management professionals include:
- Underutilized properties cost the federal government billions annually, compelling increased scrutiny over how FRP is managed. Yet facilities are mission critical—our government cannot function without them.
- Executive orders, presidential memoranda, GSA policies and regulations, GAO reports and federal laws shine a continuous light on the need to find new efficiencies in managing and protecting FRP assets.
- The increasing vulnerability of federal facilities to a variety of natural and man-made threats, both domestically and internationally, must be addressed.
- Big obstacles add complexity—like the information silos within and across federal organizations—that inhibit the efficient and economic management and protection of real property assets.
Combine these realities with budget constraints, and the requirement to do more with less makes clear that:
- The array of status quo stand-alone FRP management (FRPM) software applications and data silos will be challenged in meeting the broad objectives put forth since the 2004 Executive Order 13327 which states: “…executive branch departments and agencies shall recognize the importance of real property resources through increased management attention, the establishment of clear goals and objectives, improved policies and levels of accountability, and other appropriate action.”
- A force multiplier is needed. In military terms, a force multiplier is a capability that, when added to and employed by a combat force, significantly increases the combat potential of that force and thus enhances the probability of successful mission accomplishment. In general terms, force multipliers are tools that help people amplify their efforts to produce more output. Employing force-multiplying tools means that people using these tools get more done with the same amount of effort. In the case of federal real property, a technological force multiplier will allow FRP professionals to get more done with less effort, while extending the value of traditional FRPM software systems and data. It will embrace both the unique business challenges faced within each functional silo, as well as the broad picture of an agency’s portfolio measured against the GSA’s management policies and regulations for the effective and efficient stewardship of federal real property assets.