With More Bucks, VA Promises More

May 08, 2009
Military.com|by Bryant Jordan
The Veterans Administration has seen the future, and it is in 1s and 0s — the real if unromantic language of technology — and improved corporate management.

When it formally presented its 2010 budget yesterday, officials emphasized that in addition to the largest single-year funding increase in three decades — about $15 billion — the agency’s $113 billion budget for next year calls for a bigger investment in the behind-the-curtains operations that make the system work — with a significant part of that being information technology.

“VA will employ an integrated corporate model with central coordination of common management infrastructure, including those for human resources, financial management, acquisitions, performance measurement, and IT,” Acting Assistant Secretary for Management Rita Reed said in prepared remarks. While these kinds of processes are not uppermost in the minds of veterans looking to the VA for help, Reed made the case the new corporate model will reap benefits for the vets.

“We are really excited about the emphasis and investment in the common management infrastructure,” she said “While it’s totally appropriate that ordinarily our headlines and our focus is on the administration, the services and the benefits they provide — really investing in providing them in a better, more efficient way and investing in our workforce is exciting to everyone here.”

Reed also said a strong corporate model of operations will decentralize processes and result in more efficient medical and benefits services in the field, even while it provides the integrated policy and coordination through a central office.



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