Methodologies and Technologies for Rapid Enterprise Architecture Delivery


| Home | Courses | Certification | Projects | Papers | Contact Us |



TEN Archive

Contact Us




A Visible Solution Paper

Government Performance and Results Act

Printable PDF Version

 "Visible Systems Corporation can help you meet the strategic planning and performance measurement requirements of the Results Act, today!"

Dr. James B. Whittaker, author of

  • The Government Performance and Results Act of 1993: A Mandate for Strategic Planning and Performance Measurement


Government Performance and Results Act

What is the Results Act?

The purposes of the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) of 1993 (Public Law 103-62) are to:

 Improve the confidence of the American people in the capability of the Federal government, by systematically holding Federal organizations accountable for achieving program results;

 Initiate program performance reform [by] ...setting program goals, measuring program performance against those goals, and reporting publicly on their progress;

 Improve Federal program effectiveness and public accountability by promoting a new focus on results, service quality, and customer satisfaction;

 Help Federal managers improve service delivery, by requiring that they plan for meeting program objectives...

 Improve congressional decision-making by providing more objective information on achieving statutory objectives, on the relative effectiveness and efficiency of Federal programs and spending; and

 Improve internal management of the Federal government.

Dr. James B. Whittaker, a well-known GPRA implementation expert, says the Results Act is really about three things: change, obtaining results, and performance measurement.

  • Change. The Results Act changes the way the Federal government does business, the way Federal managers are held accountable for results, the focus of Federal organizations to service quality and customer satisfaction, and the way Federal management information is made available to the public.
  • Obtaining Results. The Results Act states that an organization's mission should determine all its activities. Good business practices require that the mission should be customer-driven. The GPRA further states that the final measure of Federal program effectiveness and efficiency is results.
  • Performance Measurement. The Results Act requires organizations to measure success or failure in achieving stated goals and results. The law provides for establishing a baseline and measuring, over time, Federal government performance.

Back to Contents.

What does the Results Act require?

Specific GPRA provisions require all Federal organizations to:

 Develop a 5-year strategic plan by September 30, 1997 (OMB guidance requires a six-year plan).

 By September 30, 1997, develop a performance plan that sets annual performance goals beginning with Federal fiscal year 1999 (October 1998 - September 1999).

 Make performance reports annually, beginning March 31, 2000, on actual performance compared to goals established in the strategic and performance plans.

Back to Contents.

How can Visible help you implement the Results Act?

Visible has state-of-the-art products and a proven, comprehensive methodology for implementing results-oriented, customer-focused enterprise management in any government organization. Basically, Visible’s approach provides guidance and a flexible framework that allow an organization to establish effective, GPRA-compliant, management practices that, at the same time, reflect the organization’s unique culture and requirements. Visible’s consultants can help an organization prepare for, develop, implement, and improve any of the following practices:

 Multiple-Level Strategic Planning (at all organization levels)

 Performance Planning (developing and documenting performance indicators)

 Data Collection (determining performance results)

 Performance Reporting (communicating results)

Visible can help with state-of-the-art tools.

Visible has an integrated E-CASE (Enterprise - Computer Aided Systems Engineering) product, Visible Advantageä , that is uniquely suited to support Federal government compliance with the provisions and requirements of the Results Act. Visible Advantage provides an easy-to-use tool for documenting, modifying and printing the strategic and performance plans required by the Results Act. It is the only tool that allows development of multiple-level, linked strategic plans and performance plans.

Typical Structure of a Multiple-Level Strategic Plan

Visible Advantage is a Windows™-based business and Information Engineering support system that includes extensive reporting capability and state-of-the-art modeling, charting, analysis and information system design tools. Visible Advantage, designed to support Visible's strategically-driven Enterprise Engineering methodology, can be used to support GPRA compliance in the same way it is used to support related business methodologies such as Total Quality Management (TQM), Business Reengineering (BRE), Business Process Reengineering (BPR), and Continuous Process Improvement (CPI).

Visible Advantage can be used effectively as just a strategic planning tool, and such use will result in superior strategic plans, but its strengths are best utilized when organizations also use its power for all GPRA-related activities.

For example, Visible Advantage can be used to document an organization's performance measures and link them to appropriate elements of the strategic plan (see figure below). This linkage allows quick reaction to changes in environment, policy or customer requirements. Using Visible Advantage, the information requirements that support an organization's performance measures can also be modeled and translated into database, data warehouse, decision support system (DSS), and executive information system (EIS) designs. These designs can then be developed and implemented to provide for automated capture, reporting and analysis of performance measures.

In addition to its own tools, Visible uses Ventana Corporation’s collaborative technology, GroupSystemsä , to facilitate many of the critical elements of strategic planning, such as consensus building and group decision making. GroupSystems is a computer-based tool set that uniquely supports group sessions by allowing both simultaneous and anonymous participation. Anonymity allows ideas to be evaluated on their merit and not their source -- pressure to conform to a group norm is alleviated without losing group consensus. Simultaneous participation using networked computers significantly reduces the time required for meetings (average timesaving range from 50% to 80%, with commensurate cost savings). Using Ventana’s electronic meeting support systems, Visible is able to conduct strategic planning sessions that are extremely effective and productive, in an atmosphere that is both relaxed and supportive. Even though the tools are "high tech," they are extremely "user friendly."

Visible can help through training and facilitation.

Visible consultant can provide a wide range of training pertaining to strategic planning and performance measurement for organizations that are just beginning their GPRA-related activities and want to do them right, as well as those that have already started and would like to adopt a facilitated, computer-supported approach. Visible and its affiliates are skilled not only in strategic planning and organizational management, but also in developing and implementing the kinds of automated systems with which successful Federal organizations eventually will manage their performance measures.

Visible's highly experienced consultants help clients gain the necessary expertise to effectively use Visible Advantage and GroupSystems through facilitation, training, education, and coaching. Visible prides itself on its ability to transfer skills and knowledge that allow clients to gain mastery of strategic and performance planning processes and tools. This is of particular importance because the Results Act states adamantly that only Federal employees may develop their organization's strategic plans, performance measures, and reporting capabilities – i.e., these are "inherently governmental" functions. Thus, Visible's role can only be that of trainer, facilitator and coach.

Visible's tools and services are available now.

Visible products, training, and consulting services are available on a GSA Schedule.

Back to Contents.

More Information

 For more information concerning this Visible Solution, please contact:

North America

Visible Systems Corporation
201 Spring Street Lexington MA 02421 USA
Phone: +1-781-778-0200 · Fax  +1-781-778-0208

Web Site:


Clive Finkelstein, Managing Director
Information Engineering Services Pty Ltd
PO Box 246, Hillarys Perth WA 6923 Australia
Phone: +61-8-9402-8300 Fax: +61-8-9402-8322

Web Site:

GroupSystems™ is a trademark of Ventana Corporation, Tucson, Arizona




| Home | Courses | Certification | Projects | Papers | TEN Archive | Contact Us | [Search |

(c) Copyright 1995-2015 Clive Finkelstein. All Rights Reserved.