Cover: Improving Government Processes

Improving Government Processes

From Velocity Management to Presidential Appointments

Published May 12, 2005

by John Dumond, Rick Eden

Download Free Electronic Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.5 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.

To substantiate the claim of the Volcker Commission that "governments and government agencies can change, even in ways that seem far-reaching, and those changes can produce significant improvements in efficiency and performance" we present a case study in which governmental agencies worked together to achieve successful change. This study involved the Velocity Management (VM) initiative, which the U.S. Army began in 1994 to improve its order fulfillment and related processes, and which the National Partnership for Reinventing Government recognized with a Golden Hammer award in 1998. We then suggest how the VM approach might be applied to other governmental processes. Because of the Volcker Commission's concern with the quality of senior governmental executives, we focus here on the presidential appointments process. As with military logistics processes, this process is complex, has both chronic and acute performance problems, and involves many stakeholders. The problems have been well described for decades, and many reasonable recommendations have been proposed. Nevertheless, the performance problems have continued to worsen to the point that the system is now considered to be in crisis. A proven approach to implementing and managing change through interagency cooperation may be the missing catalyst. --

Research conducted by

Originally published in: High-Performace Government: Structure, Leadership, Incentives, pp. 78-90.

This report is part of the RAND reprint series. The Reprint was a product of RAND from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.