Strategy Markup Language

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Strategy Markup Language (StratML) is an XML-based standard vocabulary and schema for the information commonly contained in strategic and performance plans and reports. StratML Part 1 specifies the elements of strategic plans and Part 2 extends Part 1 to include the additional elements required for performance plans and reports.

Originally adopted as an American national standard (ANSI/AIIM 21:2009) Part 1, Strategic Plans, was published as an international standard (ISO 17469-1) on February 11, 2015, with minor changes from the ANSI version.[1] On November 13, 2015, the ANSI version of Part 1 was replaced with the ISO version (ANSI/AIIM/ISO 17469-1).[2] On January 9, 2017, the ISO changes and several additional enhancements were approved for incorporation into Part 2, Performance Plans and Reports (ANSI/AIIM 22).[3] Internationalization of Part 2 will depend upon sufficient support from other nations in the ISO process.

Sections 2 and 10 of the GPRA Modernization Act (GPRAMA) require U.S. federal agencies to publish their strategic and performance plans and reports in machine-readable format.[4][5] StratML is such a format.

Guidance on GPRAMA issued by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) notes that XML is a machine-readable format but does not require agencies to use an open, standard format.[6] However, OMB Circular A-119[7] directs agencies to use voluntary consensus standards whenever possible and OMB's open government directive requires the use of open data formats to the extent practicable.[8] In May 2013, President Obama issued an executive order, making openness and machine-readability the default for the information of the U.S. federal government,[9] and an accompanying OMB policy memo reiterated that data standards should be used.[10] On July 28, 2016, in the revised issuance of Circular A-130, OMB further reinforced guidance to agencies to use open, machine-readable data standards.[11]

The vision of the StratML standard is: A worldwide web of intentions, stakeholders, and results. Its more explicit purposes include enabling strategic alignment through literal linkages between performance objectives and the business records supporting them.

Although the initial focus has been on the plans and reports that U.S. federal agencies are required to compile and maintain under the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA), the standard has been specified generically so as to be applicable not only to all organizations, worldwide, but also to individuals who choose to lead mission/goal-directed lives.

Publishing strategic and performance plans and reports on the Web in open, standard, machine-readable format is a good practice not only for agencies at all levels of government worldwide but also all organizations whose plans and reports should be matters of public record. Charitable, tax-exempt organizations have an obligation to their donors, as well as to taxpayers, to share their plans and performance data freely. Policymakers should also ensure that tax-favored organizations and groups are effectively contributing to the realization of public objectives. Toward that end, GPRAMA requires agencies to identify and evaluate tax expenditures contributing to realization of their goals.[12][13][14] However, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the Executive Branch has failed to address those provisions of the law.[15] Charity Navigator's 3.0 initiative focuses on the results being achieved by charities, as the primary means by which their performance should be evaluated.[16] However, they have encountered difficulties implementing the initiative, based upon the quality of the data submitted by charities.[17] The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has begun making available as machine-readable data the information tax-exempt organizations are required to submit, but such data does not include performance metrics on what they are accomplishing.[18] Corporate social responsibility plans and reports should also be openly and freely available on the Web.

Performance management and management by objectives (MBO) are supported in a highly scalable manner by an open, machine-readable standard like StratML, thereby enabling the realization of network effects as well as interoperability among proliferating stovepipe "dashboards" reporting performance indicators to various stakeholder groups.[19][20][21][22]


  1. ^ ISO 17469-1, Document management -- Strategy markup language (StratML) -- Part 1: StratML core elements
  2. ^ Strategy Markup Language - Part 1: StratML core elements
  3. ^ ANSI/AIIM 22: 2017, Standard Recommended Practice - Strategy Markup Language - Part 2: Performance Plans and Reports
  4. ^ GPRAMA Sec. 2. Strategic Planning Amendments
  5. ^ GPRAMA Sec. 10. Format of Performance Plans and Reports
  6. ^ OMB Circular A-11, Part 6, Preparation and Submission of Strategic Plans, Annual Performance Plans, and Annual Program Performance Reports
  7. ^ OMB Circular A-119, Federal Participation in the Development and Use of Voluntary Consensus Standards and in Conformity Assessment Activities
  8. ^ Open Government Directive, Office of Management & Budget
  9. ^ Executive Order 13642, Making Open and Machine Readable the New Default for Government Information
  10. ^ OMB M-13-13, Open Data Policy: Managing Information as an Asset
  11. ^ OMB Circular A-130 Managing Information as a Strategic Resource
  12. ^ GPRAMA Sec. 3, Performance Planning Amendments, paragraphs (a)(2) & (4)(B)
  13. ^ GPRAMA Sec. 6, Quarterly Progress Reviews and Use of Performance Information, paragraphs (6)(a)(3) & (5)
  14. ^ GPRAMA Sec. 7, Transparency of Federal Government Programs, Priority Goals, and Results, paragraphs (c)(6) & (7).
  15. ^ MANAGING FOR RESULTS: Implementation of GPRA Modernization Act Has Yielded Mixed Progress in Addressing Pressing Governance Challenges
  16. ^ Charity Navigator, Mission & Where We Are Headed
  17. ^ Results Reporting Update: Progress Towards Developing a Rating Methodology that Encompasses an Assessment of each Charity's Results Reporting, August 1, 2015
  18. ^ IRS Makes Electronically Filed Form 990 Data Available in New Format, IR-2016-87, June 16, 2016
  19. ^ Organizational Stovepipe - stovepipe (organisation)
  20. ^ Management Information Systems Dashboard
  21. ^ Business Dashboard
  22. ^ Performance dashboards indexed on the website

See also[edit]