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Thursday, September 18, 2014

DHS management chief nominee's approach is data centric

As Russell Deyo sailed through his nomination hearing Wednesday to be the next undersecretary for management at the Homeland Security Department, his management approach and priorities centered on data.

The retired Johnson & Johnson executive told Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs lawmakers that getting DHS to have standard financial data will lead to better and more strategic decision making.

If confirmed, Deyo would replace Rafael Borras, who left in February after more than four years on the job.

DHS reached a milestone in 2013 when, for the first time ever, it received an unqualified opinion from auditors for its financial management processes.

Deyo said he recognizes that accomplishment and wants to make sure DHS doesn't slip back from there. 

At the same time, he said the next step toward better financial management has to happen sooner than later.

"The next big piece, as far as I can see so far, is we need to have a fully integrated financial management system across all the components. You have to have reliable information, so you can make smart budget decisions and have good analytics to make good strategic decisions. And having ledger sheets that don't match up, and you can't compare apples to apples across the groups, makes it very, very difficult to make informed, strategic decisions," Deyo said. "I think it's critical the agency have a long-term focus, and you can't do that if you don't have reliable data. So that is an existent high priority within the finance group and indeed the leadership of the department, and I strongly embrace that."

He said during his time at Johnson & Johnson, having a common financial system was essential in making strategic decisions.

DHS is heading down a path toward reducing the number of financial management systems used by the agency. Right now, there are 13 separate systems, but three components are moving to Interior's National Business Center, including the Transportation Security Administration and the Coast Guard.

-Jason Miller, FederalNewsRadio.com
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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

IGs overburdened by congressional mandates, survey finds

Few agencies host blow-out conference extravaganzas. And few feds swipe their government charge cards when paying for personal stuff. But all federal inspectors general spend more of their time worrying about that sort of wrongdoing, thanks to new congressional mandates.

IGs say those must-do's are distracting them from enterprising work that could shed light on riskier agency behavior.

A new survey of 28 inspectors general by the Association of Government Accountants and Kearney & Company P.C. shows IGs are concerned about their effectiveness, as they balance work requirements against tight budgets and difficulties in getting needed information.

Along with the online survey, conducted in June, the researchers interviewed a mix of staff at federal IG offices. The researchers delved more deeply into problems uncovered in a similar survey done a year ago.

-Emily Kopp, FederalNewsRadio.com
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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

GAO released the revised Green Book, standards to help agencies achieve goals and safeguard resources

Internal control helps an entity run its operations efficiently and effectively, report reliable information about its operations, and comply with applicable laws and regulations. The Standards for Internal Control in the Federal Government, known as the "Green Book," sets the standards for an effective internal control system for federal agencies.

2014 Green Book Overview 

2014 Green Book

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