CHICAGO – Efforts that have saved $529 million for Illinois taxpayers by making State government run more efficiently and effectively should serve as a model for other states to follow, a national good-government group announced today. At its national annual meeting on Saturday, Dec. 3 in Wilmington, Del., The Council of State Governments (CSG) presented the Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS) with a 2005 Innovations Award for successfully consolidating common administrative duties previously managed by many State agencies.
“Our hope is that other states will be inspired by Illinois’ success to pursue similar initiatives of their own,” said CSG Regional Director Michael H. McCabe.
“Illinois taxpayers should be delighted the State’s efforts to improve efficiency, transparency and accountability are winning national recognition,” said CMS Acting Director Paul Campbell. “We’re proud that in addition to saving taxpayer dollars and improving accountability, we’ve freed agencies from a range of administrative duties so they can better allocate their efforts, time and resources to fulfilling their core missions and helping the people of Illinois.”
In 2003, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich instructed CMS to streamline the state’s operations, share resources and save taxpayer money while improving the business services of state government. A recent report by Deloitte Consulting validated that efficiency efforts led by CMS to fulfill this mandate saved Illinois taxpayers more than $529 million over the past two years alone.
Prior to the implementation of this effort, the State’s administrative functions such as information technology, facilities management and procurement of goods and services were largely decentralized and scattered across various agencies, according to CSG. In many cases, resources were allocated haphazardly and the State missed opportunities to capture its extensive purchasing power in managing these duties, CSG noted.
CMS led a more networked approach to fulfill these and other back-office responsibilities such as
internal audit, media relations and legal services. The model, called Shared Services, incorporates sound, private-sector management principles designed to build consensus, increase accountability, decrease administrative costs and free up resources that then can be redirected to core services.
“Illinois’ Shared Services model stood out as an outstanding example of a successful effort to save taxpayer dollars at a time when many of our states are facing significant budgetary challenges. But the selection committee was equally impressed with the program’s emphasis on efficiency, accountability and effective ‘customer service,’” McCabe continued.
The Innovation Award from CSG is one of several awards CMS has received this year:
• In July, CMS and Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) were honored with a CIO Partnership Award from the U.S. EPA for their efforts to save resources to benefit taxpayers across the state. The award recognized both departments’ longstanding achievements in information security, and their recent leadership on projects using e-authentication technology between the state and national governments.
• In April, CMS received the E-Gov Institute’s 2005 Knowledge Management (KM) Award for the state’s innovative procurement practices. As part of its reorganization to become a more effective service agency to state government, CMS created the Bureau of Strategic Sourcing and Procurement (BOSSAP), which is revolutionizing the way goods and services are purchased by the state. To support these efforts, BOSSAP created the Knowledge Management Division to assist with research, professional development, administration of procurement systems, contract compliance and procurement call center.
The Knowledge Management system has helped save millions in its first full year of operation alone. Cost savings were achieved by leveraging existing state technology – Lotus Notes – instead of implementing new technology that could have cost millions of dollars.
About The Council of State Governments
Since 1975, The Council of State Governments has identified innovative state policies or programs which have been successfully implemented by individual states and have the potential to be adapted for use in other states. Initiated in 1986, CSG’s Innovations Awards Program was designed to afford greater public visibility to the innovative and exemplary state programs selected each year and to facilitate the transfer of those successful experiences to other states. CSG is headquartered in Lexington, Ky.