Tuesday, 06 January 2009 04:44

Fed-Gov Learning Management

Written by Jonathan Malkin

Business analysts are masters at adaptation and learning.  A BA can be dropped into any situation and quickly learn everything necessary to get the job done.  A business analyst must quickly become a subject matter expert in his or her domain. 

Learning Management Systems (LMS) for U.S. Federal Government clients is the domain I currently serve.  My first task in entering this position was to identify the key knowledge areas unique to this domain and become an expert in them.  This month I explain the key LMS concepts for Federal Government clients: EHRI and SF-182.

"Enterprise Human Resources Integration (EHRI) is one of five OPM led e-Government initiatives designed to leverage the benefits of information technology", http://www.opm.gov/egov/e-gov/EHRI/.

EHRI requires that federal agencies report all training data on federal employees to (Office of Personnel Management (OPM).  This gives OPM, Congress and the President ready access to training data across all federal agencies.  Training records are maintained across agencies so if an employee moves from Department of Labor (DOL) to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) their training is ultimately reported to the same repository.

Training data is organized in two major categories: Internal and External.

Internal Training

Internal training is training delivered by an agency to its employees.  Typically this training takes place on-site and does not require travel accommodations or other travel expenses.  Internal training includes instructor-led and online courses.  Internal training typically does not require a provisioning process to allocate money to pay for training and travel. 

External Training

External training is training delivered by an external vendor.  External training typically requires provisioning money to pay for the course and for travel and accommodations.  External training includes instructor-led courses, conferences, and workshops.  To facilitate the provisioning process the federal government requires an SF-182 form submitted by the employee.

The SF-182 is submitted through an approval process that most likely includes the employee's supervisor and the finance or budget department.  The employee attends training then validates the actual expenses, course dates, and attendance.

Conclusion

EHRI is a major initiative in the Federal Government to create an electronic record for every government employee.  Each employee may be tracked independent of agency assignment.  There are many technical challenges in integrating this data that will take several years to resolve.  I look forward to a day when federal employees may track their career including training throughout their government service.

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