Treasury Department Building

Strength in Numbers – Unifying the Government’s Financial Management Voice

We have all heard the phrase "there's strength in numbers", but what does that mean in a government setting?  Although there are many interpretations, perhaps the most common is simply – people with a common goal are more likely to reach that goal if they work together.

For financial management, the lack of coordination across the government has led to agencies approaching their software vendors independently for new functionalities, enhancements, or fixes.

This approach has caused increased costs because the government must pay to support unique versions of similar software. It also causes inefficiencies since new features added to these versions are not available or usable government-wide.

These agencies all have the same goal: high functioning, user-friendly software that allows them to address their financial management needs. This warrants a “strength in numbers” approach.

To address this need, FIT helped set up the Financial Management Standards Committee (FMSC). The Committee uses a multi-tier approach to engage financial management talent across the government and senior level executives responsible for financial operations.

FIT is working to bring financial management voices together to promote collaboration and unity in the face of common financial management goals.

This past November, the FMSC held its first Advisory Board full council meeting. Representatives from 18 Chief Financial Officer (CFO) agencies came together to discuss the need for Federal agencies to speak with one voice about standards and software providers.

Agency Deputy Chief Financial Officers (DFCOs) also discussed common pitfalls, issues, and goals affecting their financial management operations.

photo of business people sitting around a conference table

FMSC Committee Meeting November 2017
(Click on picture for larger image)

Many challenges still await this group as it moves forward with setting the financial management agenda and establishing a common voice. However, one element that the financial management community has on its side - "there's strength in numbers."

To learn more about the FMSC, contact us at FIT@fiscal.treasury.gov.

Quick References

OMB 16-11, Improving Administrative Functions Through Shared Services

Circular No. A-123 Appendix D, Compliance with the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act of l996

OMB M 13-08, Improving Financial Systems Through Shared Services

OMB M 10-26, Immediate Review of Financial Systems IT Projects

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