In every governmental agency, data is a strategic asset. For the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), becoming a facts-based, data-driven, customer-focused organization is a top priority. To help realize this goal, USDA leadership is leveraging Tableau’s visual analytics platform to analyze, visualize, and share information.

USDA is the U.S. federal executive department responsible for developing and executing federal laws related to farming, forestry, and food. In addition, USDA provides leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, rural development, nutrition, and related issues based on public policy, the best available science, and effective management. USDA is made up of 29 agencies and offices with nearly 100,000 employees who serve the American people at more than 4,500 locations across the country and abroad.

One of USDA’s two Agency Priority Goals (APGs) for FY 18-19 is to develop Chief Executive Officer (CXO) Dashboards, to integrate data from systems spanning 29 agencies and staff offices and provide the Department with enhanced capacity to collect accurate, reliable, complete, accessible, and consistent data. With this initiative, USDA will have created the first Cabinet-level suite of comprehensive administrative dashboards for seven administrative functions: human resources, information technology, finance, property, procurement, security, and operations. More information on this project can be found on the USDA Blog.

Ted Kaouk, USDA’s Chief Data Officer, is responsible for the USDA agency priority goal to establish strategic analytics dashboards that will enable improved decision-making and program outcomes for citizens. “The CXO Dashboards directly support Secretary Perdue’s vision for a USDA that is facts-based, data-driven, and customer focused by putting key sets of information at the fingertips of leadership. We are really pleased with the progress we’ve made this year.”

We were excited to have Mr. Kaouk as a keynote speaker at the Tableau New Day for Data Roadshow event in Washington, D.C. on August 2, with over 800 in attendance. While discussing the USDA CXO Dashboard project, he highlighted some of their key challenges and guiding principles for enabling a data-driven organizational culture.

Recently, USDA issued a three-year, $5 million (ceiling) award to provide a USDA-wide Tableau software, support, and training catalog to further USDA’s growing commitment towards becoming a facts-based, data-driven, customer-focused organization. The platform will support USDA IT Modernization Centers of Excellence (CoE) initiatives, including the Chief Executive Officer (CXO) Dashboard project. We are very excited to continue our partnership working with USDA.

Visit performance.gov to learn more about USDA’s APG progress.

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