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TC Takeaways: SSLC Shared Services Roundtable


Joy Langley

Date Published

Mar 23, 2023
4 minute read
Shared Services SAPOC Roundtable

Over the past two months, TC Senior Principal Joy Langley has been facilitating roundtable discussions as part of the Shared Services Leadership Coalition (SSLC), sponsored by ACT-IAC. Today, Joy shares her takeaways from the most recent roundtable, where leaders discussed why Shared Services make sense for non-mission-critical tasks.

For more context on Shared Services, please click over to this FAQ or Tim Rund’s most recent takeaway

Around the Table: SAPOCs

Before we talk about the takeaways, here is some context about who was at the table. This roundtable centered on Senior Accountable Points of Contact for Federal Shared Services (SAPOCs), their designees, and those acting in the SAPOC capacity. These are senior federal leaders – both career and political – committed to creating Shared Services at their agencies and collaborating with Shared Services communities on best practices across agencies. To get really technical, this position was established by M-19-16 in 2019.


Shared Services Aren’t Limited to Specific Parts of Government

One question I hear a lot is, “What are some of the opportunities for Shared Services in the federal government?” I think the better question would be, “What’s the best fit for Shared Services for each agency and how can agencies best work together in service of efficiency through Shared Services?” There are Shared Services for financial management, marketplaces for grants, workforce/human capital, and even data analysis, meaning there is likely a place for optimization via shared services no matter the organization you are in.

Emerging Themes in Shared Services

  1. Commitment: One overarching theme was evident during our discussions: the SAPOCs are committed to the mission of their respective agencies and recognize that at its best, Shared Services can shift non-mission-critical pieces into a marketplace or over to an agency positioned to adeptly navigate a particular type of work. I heard it eloquently explained as such: basketball players aren’t working on their slap-shots – they’re dedicated to the tools of their sport. In the same sense, a security analyst shouldn’t be working on invoicing. Let them focus on their mission-critical role and engage a Shared Services team dedicated to accounting to handle those invoices.
  2. Standardization: We also discussed how creating a set of standards will anchor Shared Services. For example, if there are requests that touch a number of agencies (FOIA, for instance), Shared Services can provide the standard methodology for evaluation and fulfillment.
  3. All or Nothing Approach: Finally, we heard loud and clear that there’s no halfway with Shared Services. The sooner agencies commit and SAPOCs engage with their larger community, the more effective Shared Services will be.


More Shared Services Insights

Be on the lookout for takeaways from ACT-IAC’s next roundtable, where experts from The Clearing will participate in a panel discussion covering findings from each of these Shared Services roundtables.

In the meantime, reach out with Shared Services questions. I can be contacted at My colleague and Shared Services expert, Tim Rund, can be reached at