2002 OMB Submission Letter for the USPTO Report

Cover Memo to OMB

The Honorable Angela B. Styles
Office of Federal Procurement Policy
Office of Management and Budget
Washington, D.C. 20503

Dear Ms. Styles:

I am pleased to submit the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) fourth “Annual Report on Management of Commercial Activities” for fiscal year (FY) 2002. This report has identified approximately 45 percent or 3,027 of our federal workforce as performing commercial type activities. This is an increase of over 10 percent from our FY 2000 report.

The USPTO, in response to increasing workloads and timeframes for granting patents and registering trademarks, recently announced a new strategic plan that will transform the agency and implement responsive, market-driven approaches to our work processes. In this regard, the USPTO has identified new approaches for performing work that is currently done by Federal employees, while preserving the inherently governmental responsibilities for examination. As a result, the FY 2002 inventory will identify even more of our positions to competition with the private sector.

The USPTO has been a strong advocate of using the private sector to support our core mission businesses. In this regard, we have already contracted out many functions that other agencies are just beginning to consider, e.g., payroll, mail processing/handling, clerical support, data transcription, systems maintenance and development, help desk support, etc. Service contracts, in particular, have presented an excellent opportunity to help us with our fluctuating workload, as well as minimize the impact on our employees as we transition to a fully electronic workplace. During FY 2002 alone, the USPTO increased the number of contract personnel onboard by over 1,000. We chose to manage a new workload requirement resulting from the American Inventors Protection Act of 1999 (P.L. 106-113) by contracting out. Currently, the USPTO has over 3,900 contract personnel working either onsite at our facilities or offsite at contractor facilities. This work is in addition to potential commercial activities identified in our FY 2002 inventory. If the USPTO were given credit for its current contracting efforts, approximately 39% of our total workforce has already been contracted out. I have enclosed a listing of the current services that the USPTO receives from commercial or other government sources for your information.

We are proud of our accomplishments and activities with regard to the FAIR Act and look forward to receiving feedback from OMB on our FY 2002 inventory. Please direct any questions that may arise to W. Dan Haigler at (703) 305-8161.


Clarence C. Crawford