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21st Century Operations Using 21st Century Technologies

Improving Transportation Systems Management and Operations – Capability Maturity Model Workshop White Paper – Organization and Staffing

5. Implementation Plan Capability Improvement Actions

Most States included some aspect of Organization and Staffing in their implementation plans to improve agency capability. Within these States, the two highest priorities were consideration of a dedicated TSM&O section or other modifications to existing organizational structures and the development of TSM&O staffing plans, potentially including identification of core staff capacities, position descriptions, and succession plans. Only five States focused on the need for some kind of structural reorganization, which may reflect participants’ acceptance of their span of control as middle managers. As noted previously, several agencies had experienced some degree of recent reorganization. Typical participant-suggested actions for advancement to the next level of capability in Organization and Staffing are presented below in order of frequency of inclusion:

  • Review/define organizational structure for TSM&O/develop business case for TSM&O section
  • Develop TSM&O staffing plans
  • Develop succession plans
  • Create career maps/paths and position descriptions
  • Provide technical training and mentoring and encourage staff participation in national forums
  • Provide TSM&O point of contact for each region to advance TSM&O concepts and projects
  • Reorganize existing headquarters division/district to emphasize TSM&O/corridor performance
  • Develop new program framework to accommodate TSM&O
  • At management level, focus on performance management plans and accountability to optimize staff utilization and efficiency
  • Hold TSM&O summit
  • Conduct additional CMM assessments

Appendix A presents the key implementation plan work tasks commonly identified for these priorities. The highlights of these priority actions are discussed below.

5.1 Review/Define Organizational Structure for TSM&O

The priority actions of agencies dealing with organizational structure related to two issues:

  • From an implementation point of view, it was seen as essential to develop an organizational configuration that was consistent with a proposed TSM&O program focus. The proposal would outline the roles and responsibilities of staff implementing other proposed strategies to improve TSM&O, the implications of their concepts of operations, and the consequent relationships among internal units (within and between headquarters and districts) and with external partners.
  • From a program point of view, there was an emphasis on clarifying the chain of responsibility, especially between the day-to-day operating managers and those senior staff responsible for resource allocation.

5.2 Develop TSM&O Staffing and Succession Plans

Most workshop participants agreed that they were significantly staff-constrained. Implementation plans with an organizational focus typically included actions focused on staffing, including the following:

  • Defining staffing needs for the agreed-upon TSM&O activity functions, including core capacities and related job descriptions, as well as allocation and balancing of responsibilities and identification of key gaps; and
  • Determining which functions could best be addressed in-house or outsourced.

Closely related to these two priorities was discussion of staff development, including career vectors and succession plans for making TSM&O an attractive professional development opportunity.

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