United States

Jeff Steinhoff on the Federal Government's Progress in Reducing Improper Payments

Dec 17, 2014
From the Government Institute

An interview on Federal News Radio featuring Jeff Steinhoff, the Executive Director of the KPMG Government Institute and a KPMG Federal Advisory Managing Director.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently reported (See GAO-15-87R, OIG Improper Payment Reporting, December 9, 2014) that 13 of the 24 major federal agencies are demonstrating progress in reducing improper payments on schedule. As evidence of what he characterized as important improvement, Jeff Steinhoff stated that for 2009, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) reported the improper payment rate was 5.42%, and for 2013, the comparable rate reported was 3.53%, which is a 35 percent drop in the rate of improper payments. OMB reported that, as a result, approximately $93 billion in improper payments from 2009 to 2013 were avoided. OMB also reported that an additional $26 billion of previous improper payments were recovered during that period.

Jeff Steinhoff cautioned that this does not mean that "we are at the finish line" regarding improper payments. He highlighted that agencies are focusing on "having a very strong analysis of the portfolio of improper payments and determining what the return on investment (ROI) is" for various scenarios. He also emphasized that to achieve a strong ROI, it is important for agencies to have priority areas for remediation, research-based methods for addressing the viability and effectiveness of new processes and procedures, and realistic benchmarking and metrics. Jeff Steinhoff further discussed the evolution of data and analytics and the important role it has played in reducing improper payments through upfront identification and prevention and improved estimating and recovery capabilities.

Listen to the interview.

In Depth with Francis Rose on Federal News Radio features daily interviews with top government executives and contractors.

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Jeff Steinhoff
Executive Director, KPMG Government Institute