discussion responses 59

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NEED 1-2 paragraph responses, with sources for these 2 discussion posts

1. The Florida Department of Corrections (FDC) is the third largest state prison system in the country with a budget of $2.4 billion; it is also the largest state agency in Florida with over 24,000 authorized full time employees (FDC, n.d.). In 2018 an update strategic plan for 2018 to 2022 was published, which outlines the vision for the agency, its values and its mission (FDC, n.d.). The FDC Strategic Plan is based on input from SWOT workshops. After leadership meetings evaluating the SWOT results four goals for the organization solidified: talent development, communications, inmate/offender programs, and environment with their associated objectives (FDC, n.d.).

The 2018-2022 plan does not provide for any implementation strategies or measurements at this time. Not having developed an implementation plan with specific assignments of responsibilities to particular roles, in addition to providing benchmarks and timeframes for measurable result, as suggested by the Bryson Strategic Model (Young, 2003), is a significant impediment to a successful strategic plan. Without measurable results it is impossible to hold management accountable and evaluate whether the organization runs efficiently and effectively.

This leads to the second impediment of a successful strategic plan, namely preventing or not allowing an increase in managerial authority (Moynihan, 2006). This is a cultural issue within the FDC. All decisions are historically made by a centralized administration. Every district or facility is expected to run in the same way without taking into consideration any local differences. For example, one facility may need to spend more money on health care due to their high number of elderly and chronically ill inmates, whereas another facility has increased security costs due to significant gang activity. Without above mentioned performance information it is difficult to follow MFR strategies.

In order to mitigate the two flaws in the current strategic plan, the goals need to be made measurable. At the same time, regions need to be given some autonomy to develop their own strategies, budgets and goals, all within the FDC framework. It is necessary to change the culture within the organization and encourage accountability and mission focus.

An external factor impeding the development of a successful strategic plan is the fact that spending money on the department of correction is highly unpopular among citizens. As described in last week’s discussion, the FDC operates under several federal, state and constitutional mandates; however in the political realm of funds allocation the amount budgeted for FDC operations is often considered too high. This means that a well thought out budget needs to be re-arranged as the budgeted amount has not been approved. In order to solicit support for the FDC mission it is important to educate the public and politicians, even the governor, on the goals, values and benefits of sufficient spending. While, for example, many people consider it unnecessary and a waste of taxpayer money to treat inmates with HCV, education has to focus on the fact that this is a treatment mandated by a court decision and therefore has to be provided to eligible inmates, and at the same time a beneficial public health measure.

Overall, the current FDC strategic plan is incomplete and flawed. It needs to be revised and updated.

Florida Department of Corrections (n.d.). 2018-2022 Strategic Plan. Retrieved from: http://www.dc.state.fl.us/pub/sp/sp-2018.pdf.

Moynihan, D. (2006). Managing for results in state government: Evaluating a decade of reform. Public Administration Review, 66(1), 77-89.

Young, R. D. (2003). Perspectives on strategic planning in the public sector. Institute for Public Service and Policy Research, University of South Carolina

2. The Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services (ADRS) provides services to adults and children with disabilities. ADRS uses strategic planning to ensure that the people they support are benefiting from their services. According to ADRS (2017), the organization received 81% of federal funding and 17% from the state in 2017, so it is important that they have an adequate strategic financial system so that they can continue receiving funding. It is important to include the financial administrators in the strategic planning process (Casey & Seay, 2010). Financial administrators possess a certain level of skill that can help monitor if the organization is in compliance.

Internal and external factors can have an effect on the organization’s capacity to achieve financial empowerment. Strategic planning is used to “make sense of an organization’s purposes, resources, actions, and ends” (Young, 2003). Public organizations must deal with both external and internal factors. The organization must identify its strengths and weaknesses as it relates to its resources, funding sources, and performance (Young, 2003). The organization must determine if the resources are adequate enough to achieve the mission.

The most recent online plan of ADRS is from 2017. It states that ADRS will “acquire maximum resources” and “evaluate the effective and efficient use” of their resources (Alabama Department of Rehabilitation, 2017). One possible internal factor is if there were no collaboration among departments. If the financial administrators are not included the plan will not effectively address the organization’s financial needs. This can be addressed by including representatives from each department. The second internal factor is if the organization did not make use of technology advancements. Technology is very important when working with people with disabilities. This can be addressed by getting technology budget requests approved (Casey & Seay, 2010). An external factor could be if the organization did not have the legislative support for a new service they wanted to add, and it was denied due to limited resources. This issue could be addressed by partnering with other organizations to cut down on the cost of the new service.

References

Alabama Department of Rehabilitation. (2017). 2017 ADRS annual report. Retrieved from http://www.rehab.alabama.gov

Casey, J.P., & Seay, K.T. (2010). The role of the finance office in strategic planning. Government Finance Review, 26(6), 28-36.

Young, R.D. (2003). Perspectives on strategic planning in the public sector: Institute for Public Service and Policy Research, University of South Carolina.

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