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CIO Council to agency IT shops: Get smart on social media and open government


This story has been updated.

Every federal agency’s information technology shop should include workers with expertise in social media, open government and cloud computing. That's according to new guidance from the federal Chief Information Officers Council.

The updated Clinger-Cohen Core Competencies and Learning Objectives released by the council Thursday said university courses and training programs aimed at preparing IT professionals for government service should include information about those fields.

The document also includes new “competencies” in IT governance, IT program management leadership, vendor management and cybersecurity and information assurance strategies and plans.

The CIO council updates its list of core competencies every two years to keep training and hiring priorities up to date with new guidance from the Office of Management and Budget and with new technology challenges facing government. Several updates in this round were spurred by the federal digital strategy launched by federal CIO Steven VanRoekel in May, according to a blog post.

“Federal chief information officers should ensure that the knowledge, skills and abilities represented in each competency in this document are resident within their organization for overall staff productivity,” the document said.

The core competencies are used by the CIO University Consortium, a collection of graduate schools that offer programs for aspiring or current federal technology workers and that map their offerings to the competencies document.  

The new social media competency urges trainers to discuss the pros and cons of allowing widespread use of social media at agencies. Trainers should also cover how to use social media in a professional manner and how social media is changing collaboration in government.

The new IT governance competency focuses on ensuring that IT and technology staff are playing a vital role in fulfilling agencies’ missions.

The 1996 Clinger-Cohen Act established the modern system of agency chief information officers. 

(Image via sheelamohanachandran2010/ /

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