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Monday, June 24, 2013

HUD buying into shared services

W
atch for more action around financial management shared services in the coming months.



Industry sources confirmed the Department of Housing and Urban Development will announce its decision in the coming days to move its core financial management system to the Treasury Department's Bureau of Fiscal Service. BFS, formerly the Bureau of Public Debt, provides shared services to about 40 percent of the civilian agencies, including NASA, the Social Security Administration and components of the Homeland Security Department.

Besides Treasury itself, HUD will be the largest migration to the shared service, and it could take two years, the industry source says.

Additionally, the Interior Department announced earlier this week it awarded Unisys a $44 million contract to put its Financial and Business Management System (FBMS) in the cloud.
And the Federal Trade Commission, the Coast Guard and the Commerce Department are in the discovery phase to decide whether to move to a shared service provider.

But the fact that HUD is making the move to Treasury is a significant milestone. The agency's decision has been a long-time coming. It started the process to implement a new financial management system in 2006 by releasing a request for proposals. It eventually awarded a 10-year contract to IBM in 2010 worth $129 million to implement a new system. It was a three-phased approach starting with HUD's core financial system and then pulling in other components. The project struggled and HUD, with the help of the Office of Management and Budget, revisited its plans that same year.

HUD was one of several agency financial system projects OMB focused on during its 2010 effort to better oversee these programs.

On the IT Dashboard, HUD said it would spend $18 million in 2013 to support its legacy systems, and a total of $26.3 million on its core financial systems.

Over at Interior, Unisys will transition FBMS to a secure, cloud environment that runs SAP's Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software platform.

Interior uses FBMS to account for all income and expenditures.

-Jason Miller, FederalNewsRadio.com
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