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Number: DAO 216-16
Effective Date: 1987-09-23


This Order establishes policies, procedures, and responsibilities for the Federal Information Resources Management (IRM) Review Program within the Department of Commerce (the "Department").


The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980 assigns responsibilities to agencies for carrying out their information resources management activities in an efficient, effective and economical manner, and for complying with information policies, principles, standards and guidelines established by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The Act also requires that each agency periodically review its information resources management activities. The IRM review program was established to assist agency IRM officials in meeting their review responsibilities under the Act.


.01 This Order applies to all Departmental offices and operating units of the Department.

.02 This Order implements:

a. Review responsibilities specified in the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980, P.L. 96-115, 44 U.S.C. 3513.

b. Triennial review responsibilities specified in OMB Circular A-130 "Management of Federal Information Resources."

c. General Services Administration (GSA) Federal Information Resources Management Temporary Regulation 10, Appendix A to 41 CFR Part 201-19, dated February 19, 1987, "Triennial Review of Agency Administration and Operation of Information Resources Management Activities."


It is the policy of the Department to carry out its information resources management activities in an efficient, effective, and economical manner, and to comply with the information policies, principles, standards and guidelines prescribed by OMB. The Department will:

a. Develop and implement an IRM review program which will assist in the effective and economical management of its information resources.

b. Develop and implement consistent Departmentwide policies and practices for the planning and conduct of IRM reviews and for completing appropriate follow-up actions to address problems identified through the triennial review process.

c. Ensure that IRM reviews focus on Governmentwide and Departmentwide priority areas to ensure maximum effectiveness.

d. Integrate IRM reviews with other management initiatives by coordinating Departmentwide IRM related review activities.


.01 IRM Review. An evaluation of an information management activity to determine if it is being carried out in an effective and economical manner in support of program missions and objectives; and to determine how well the Department, as well as Departmental offices and operating units, are complying with established IRM policies, procedures, principles, standards and guidelines.

.02 Information Resources Management. The planning, budgeting, organizing, directing, training, and control associated with government information. The term encompasses both information and the related resources, such as personnel, equipment, funds, and technology.

.03 Triennial IRM Review Plan. A three-year review plan which includes Governmentwide priorities for reviews; and establishes and includes Departmental and operating unit priorities for review. The triennial plan provides specific objectives for the tree-year cycle and details planned reviews for the three-year cycle. Triennial review plans are prepared by each operating unit. A consolidated plan is submitted by the Department to GSA.

.04 Review Synopsis. A written, condensed summary prepared for each completed review giving the principle findings and recommendations of the review and describing initiatives and actions to be taken to address the recommendations of the review. The format for the review synopsis shall be specified by the Department based on GSA requirements. A consolidated report of the individual review synopses shall be submitted to GSA by the Department at the end of the each fiscal year.

.05 End-of-Cycle Report. A written report prepared by each operating unit at the end of each three-year cycle which consolidates the three-year effort; evaluates how well the reviews met the objectives established for the three-year cycle and the benefits of the three-year review effort to the operating unit; demonstrates how the operating unit is complying with its responsibilities under the Paperwork Reduction Act; and identifies potential review opportunities for the next three-year cycle. The individual operating unit report will be incorporated in the Department's end-of-cycle report for submission to GSA.

.06 Priority Areas for Review. IRM functions and activities to which review resources should be directed to achieve the greatest potential improvements in effectiveness and economy of operations. Three review priority levels are used to guide the Department's review planning process: Governmentwide review priorities as determined by GSA; Departmentwide review priorities as determined by the Departmental IRM Review Steering Committee; and operating unit specific review priorities. Some of the factors used to determine the priority areas are: agency mission and/or special initiatives; statutory and regulatory requirements; current and potential dollar magnitude and areas identified in previous review.

.07 Triennial Review Objectives. Specific objectives to be achieved by the Department as well as by each operating unit during the triennial review cycle. Operating units will define their triennial objectives in their three-year plan. The triennial review objectives for the Department as well as for each operating unit will be included in the Department's Triennial IRM Review Plan submitted to GSA. At the end of the triennial cycle, the Department as well as each operating unit will be required to evaluate how well the reviews met the defined objectives.


.01 Assistant Secretary for Administration is the senior official designated to implement the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980. The Assistant Secretary for Administration has Departmentwide responsibility for policy direction and oversight for the IRM review program.

.02 Secretarial Officers, heads of Departmental offices, and heads of operating units are responsible for planning and managing the IRM review program for their organization and for ensuing compliance with the provisions of this Order. As appropriate, they are also responsible for designating the senior IRM official.

.03 Departmental Offices of Information Resources Management, Information Analysis and Review Division (IARD) is responsible for establishing, implementing, and providing central oversight of the IRM review program for the Assistant Secretary for Administration. The IARD will:

a. Identify and recommend priority areas for review to the Departmental IRM Review Steering Committee.

b. Work with other Departmental offices with review responsibilities to establish coordination of the planning and conduct of IRM-related reviews Departmentwide.

c. Issue the Department's "call" to the operating units for the development of triennial IRM review plans and provide guidance to the operating units on preparing annual updates to the plans.

d. Develop a triennial IRM Review Plan for the Office of the Secretary based on Departmentwide priorities identified by the IRM Review Steering Committee.

e. Approve operating unit plans and prepare and submit the Department's consolidated triennial IRM review plan to GSA by November 1, 1985, and every three years thereafter.

f. Prepare the Department's end-of-year report on completed reviews for submission to GSA by November 1, 1986, and every year thereafter at the end of each year of the triennial cycle.

g. Conduct periodic reviews to evaluate operating unit compliance with this Order.

h. Provide Department-level coordination for reporting requirements of the program and prepare necessary consolidated reports to GSA including the end-of-cycle evaluation report.

.04 Operating Unit Senior IRM Officials are responsible for implementing the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act and for administering the IRM Review Program within their operating units. Responsibilities include:

a. Developing and submitting an operating unit triennial IRM Review Plan to IARD in accordance with instructions provided by IARD and this Order. The operating unit plan should:

1. where possible, address the Governmentwide priorities identified by GSA and the Departmentwide priorities identified by the Steering Committee,

2. provide specific operating unit objectives for the three-year review cycle, and

3. provide details on the reviews planned for the three-year cycle using the formats specified in IARD instructions.

b. Conducting reviews in accordance with the plan and reporting to IARD on the status of the review.

c. Preparing written synopses of completed reviews in accordance with instructions provided by IARD for inclusion in the Department's end-of-year report to GSA.

d. Ensuring that appropriate follow-up actions are completed to address problems identified through the review process.

e. Updating the plan for years two and three by adding, deleting or modifying planned reviews.

f. Preparing and submitting an evaluation to IARD at the end of the three-year cycle which addresses how the operating unit's triennial review objectives were met. The format for the evaluation will be specified by IARD.

.05 Operating Unit IRM Review Program Coordinators are designated by the senior IRM officials. Coordinators are responsible for ensuring that the operational requirements of this Order are met. Coordinators serve as a central point of contact at the operating unit level for the IRM review program.

.06 IRM Review Steering Committee is a Departmental Steering Committee providing senor-level policy coordination for the IRM review program. Steering Committee members are the Department's Administration Directors or their designates and senior policy officials and representatives from all operating units. The Committee is chaired by the Director of the Office of Information Resources Management.


The Federal IRM Review Program encourages agencies to take advantage of all ongoing review activities in the IRM area to avoid duplication and overlap. Whenever possible, the Department will incorporate such review into the IRM Review Program. Examples of these review activities include:

a. reviews preparing for or resulting from the OMB spring planning and management review, and/or fall budget reviews;

b. vulnerability assessments and internal control reviews conducted under OMB Circular 123;

c. financial management systems reviews conducted under OMB Circular 127;

d. performance of commercial activity reviews conducted under OMB Circular A-76'

e. computer security reviews conducted under OMB Circular A-130;

f. information collection reviews;

g. records management assessments; and

h. internal audits.


IRM reviews may encompass any or all activities of planning, budgeting, organizing, directing, training, and control associated with the creation, collection, processing, transmission, dissemination, use, storage, and disposition of information by Government agencies. The IRM review may encompass any of the following areas:

a. Automated Date Processing Systems. Includes security, equipment, software and information.

b. Telecommunications. Includes voice, data, record, radio, facsimile and secure communications and the transmission, emission, or reception of signals, signs, writing, images, sounds, or intelligence of any nature, by wire, cable, satellite, fiber optics, laser, radio, visual, or other electronic, electric, electromagnetic, or acoustically coupled means.

c. Information Management. Information-life cycle activities that encompass the creation, use, maintenance, and disposition of information including management systems, budget and fiscal systems, program management systems, planning and forecasting systems, data base management systems, models, simulations and statistical systems.

d. Information Resources Procurement. Includes the pre-solicitation and solicitation phases of the process used in procuring information resources.

e. Records Management. Includes correspondence, reports, forms, file, audiovisual records, micrographics, mail, directives, copy, vital records, records disposition and electronic filing.

Excluded from the IMR review program are any data processing or telecommunications system or equipment, the function, operation, or use of which involve intelligence activities, cryptologic activities related to national security, direct command and control of military forces and equipment which is an integral part of a weapon system, or equipment or systems that are critical to the direct fulfillment of equipment used for routine administrative and business applications.


Reviews which are conducted under the IRM Review Program should generally follow the General Accounting Office's "Standards for Audit of Governmental Organizations, Programs, Activities, and Functions" and/or the methodology outlined in the GSA IRM Review Handbook. IRM reviews conducted under other review authorities may use the established methodology for the specific review program. These may include internal control reviews, commercial activity reviews, computer security reviews, and Inspector General audits.


The IARD will establish and disseminate written procedures and guidance as necessary to supplement this Order.

Signed by: Assistant Secretary for Administration

Office of Primary Interest: Office of Information Resources Management

Index Changes:


Information Resources Management Review Program 216-16

Questions and Comments

Send Questions or Comments on the Commerce Directives Management program to Directives@doc.gov.

Office of Privacy and Open Government
Office of the Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce


February 16, 2010