This week marks the two-year anniversary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Efficiency Review. Working across the Department, DHS has cut costs, saved time and energy, and continued to improve the way we do business. We are proud to say that we have identified over $1 billion in cost avoidances and cuts – enabling us to sustain frontline operations and become a leaner, smarter agency better equipped to protect the nation.
These accomplishments reflect the dedication of the hard-working men and women throughout DHS, whose efforts have ranged from large to small. From saving $180 million through enterprise software licensing agreements, to realizing more than $5 million by transferring excess IT equipment within the Department rather than buying new equipment, DHS is working hard to do more with less.
We have saved $15 million by eliminating non-mission critical travel, $4 million by consolidating subscriptions to professional publications and newspapers, and $5 million by using government office space and online tools for conferences instead of renting private facilities.
DHS employees like Paul Behe – a Paralegal Specialist with CBP – embody a culture of efficiency and accountability. Paul’s bright idea to save money by advertising seized property online instead of in print newspapers earned him one of four spots as a finalist out of over 18,000 submissions for the President’s 2010 SAVE Award. We are implementing Paul’s idea as a Department-wide initiative this year.
DHS has also brought the benefits of the Efficiency Review to the rest of the federal government. Following our initiative to send earnings and leave statements to employees electronically instead of printing and mailing them, the National Finance Center changed the way it distributes earning and leave statements to other government employees, resulting in an estimated annual savings of $4 million.
Most importantly, with all of our Department-wide efforts combined, our fiscal year 2012 budget allowed us to maintain crucial funding needed to help keep your communities safe and secure. Our significant efficiency efforts have preserved funding to support advances in aviation security, the hiring of new CBP and ICE agents, development of the latest in cybersecurity detection and response technology, and grants to your state and local first responders.
The Department is proud of our accomplishments over the past two years, and will continue to make efficiency a top priority in the years to come.
Published by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Washington, D.C.