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Thursday, November 22, 2007

FederalNewsRadio - Ask the CFO - George Schutter (PC)

US Peace Corps

George Schutter - Chief Financial Officer

Keeping the books can be a challenge when you are in 73 countries at once. Schutter says having an integrated planning and budgeting system in place makes all the difference in the world. He says the Peace Corps system has matured to the point where financial information can be seen almost in real-time, making it easier to adjust on the fly. An added benefit is that the system has allowed the Peace Corps to make financial accountability part of the mission, from IT folks at headquarters to posts half a world away. As a result, Schutter says after years of audit disclaimers and a qualified audit opinion last year, the Peace Corps is set to go after its first unqualified audit opinion. Another key challenge at the Peace Corps -- finding the best way to measure results. It's one thing to measure "output" from the efforts of the Peace Corps and its volunteers. It's another to measure the impact on the communities that have been helped.

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