The U.S. Agency for International Development is seeking public feedback on a plan to streamline data reporting requirements for contractors by establishing a single portal for all digital information.
NOTE: This article first appeared on FCW.com.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is creating a new data portal to help streamline contractor reporting requirements and improve the use of digital information in its missions and programs.
The agency is requesting public comment on an amendment to its acquisition rules to include new policies on data planning, collection and submission requirements.
USAID contractors currently use multiple information management portals to report a variety of datasets, from locally-maintained information systems used in overseas missions, to the Development Data Library, a public repository and central hub for agency-funded development information.
Those separate reporting channels have made it difficult for the agency to strategically integrate data and fully assess its global portfolio, according to the proposal published last week.
Under the new rule, USAID contractors will submit all requested digital information through a single portal called the USAID Digital Front Door. The rule also includes new data collection and reporting standards, which the agency said will help improve overall data quality and interoperability.
USAID said the proposed rule is meant to "reduce the burden on contractors, increase efficiency, and improve the use of data and other forms of digital information."
USAID staff, contractors and other stakeholders will use the digital front door to submit data and complete all reporting requirements as part of an effort to reduce the number of web-based data collection portals. The proposal also includes new requirements for contractors to create data management plans and use only digital methods to collect and produce digital information, and to submit data "at the finest level of granularity."
Contractors will also be required to develop Activity Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Plans, which USAID said it will use to better assess progress on programs and awards. Stakeholders and the public have until February 14, 2022 to provide feedback on the proposed rule.