Three agencies recognized for financial management gains

Three agencies have proven their ability to use financial information in daily decision-making, earning recent promotions to "green" grades indicating success in that area of the President's Management Agenda.

The Housing and Urban Development Department, U.S. Agency for International Development and Office of Personnel Management all moved up from yellow, for mixed results, to green on the latest traffic-light-style report card released earlier this week.

With the latest change, 12 agencies have the top rating in financial management, while the other 14 graded -- including the behemoth Defense Department -- are stuck at red for poor performance.

To earn a yellow rating, agencies must meet standards that include obtaining a clean audit of their financial statement and not having any recurring material weaknesses, or significant problems with the accounting process. For many agencies, getting to the first clean audit is a huge hurdle. To move from yellow to green, agencies must show that they are using their newly available financial data to make informed management decisions.

Office of Management and Budget Controller Linda Combs said HUD, USAID and OPM had all met that standard.

Combs highlighted HUD's new systems for asset management and activity-based costing in public and Indian housing programs. She said OPM now is able to accurately calculate the cost of conducting investigations of employees' backgrounds and bill agencies accordingly, while USAID implemented a new financial system that shows actual cost allocations and helps hold managers accountable for meeting cost reduction targets.

Several agencies are within striking distance of getting a green rating in the near future, Combs said. She cited the Treasury and Interior departments and the Small Business Administration, which each had one material weakness, as examples. She said the Energy Department, which had and lost a clean audit opinion, also is making progress to get back to a good standing.

But Combs said the fact that no agencies are judged to be in the yellow zone could indicate a need to recalibrate the score card standards. "Either everybody is all bad, or all good, [and] we don't have, kind of, middle ground for these people to work on. I don't think that captures the reality of where agencies are," she said.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download
  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.