Financial software standards set

JFMIP Core Financial System Requirements

The governmentwide group responsible for setting standards for agency financial management systems has published the final version of requirements that federal financial software must meet.

The Joint Financial Management Improvement Program's (JFMIP) Core Financial System Requirements define the minimum level of operation that core financial systems must have to support agency missions and comply with laws and regulations.

These requirements are seen as the centerpiece of agency efforts to improve federal financial management systems by enabling agencies to use commercial software rather than more expensive customized packages, JFMIP officials have said.

"The document addresses the goal of the Chief Financial Officers Council and the JFMIP to improve the efficiency and quality of financial management in the federal government," the document states.

The revised document makes some changes by clarifying some existing requirements, deleting outdated ones, and incorporating some new requirements, according to the document.

Only minor changes were made from the draft document that was published this summer, said Karen Cleary Alderman, JFMIP executive director, even though JFMIP received nearly 800 comments on the draft document.

"A lot of the comments were, 'What do you mean by this and that,' " Alderman said, adding that most of the changes were clarifications of the language in the document, which is about 100 pages.

The changes are the first since JFMIP assumed responsibility for certifying the government's core financial management systems in 1999. At that time, JFMIP issued three-year certifications for products, most of which are set to expire Sept. 30, 2002. JFMIP officials wanted to establish the requirements in time to give vendors a chance to respond and get certified under the new set of requirements.

JFMIP is a policy group that includes the General Accounting Office, the Office of Management and Budget and the Treasury Department.

JFMIP expects to hold an "open house" in early January to explain the changes in the core financial management requirements. The documents are also available on JFMIP's Web site at www.jfmip.gov.

About the Author

Christopher J. Dorobek is the co-anchor of Federal News Radio’s afternoon drive program, The Daily Debrief with Chris Dorobek and Amy Morris, and the founder, publisher and editor of the DorobekInsider.com, a leading blog for the Federal IT community.

Dorobek joined Federal News Radio in 2008 with 16 years of experience covering government issues with an emphasis on government information technology. Prior to joining Federal News Radio, Dorobek was editor-in-chief of Federal Computer Week, the leading news magazine for government IT decision-makers and the flagship of the 1105 Government Information Group portfolio of publications. As editor-in-chief, Dorobek served as a member of the senior leadership team at 1105 Government Information Group, providing daily editorial direction and management for FCW magazine, FCW.com, Government Health IT and its other editorial products.

Dorobek joined FCW in 2001 as a senior reporter and assumed increasing responsibilities, becoming managing editor and executive editor before being named editor-in-chief in 2006. Prior to joining FCW, Dorobek was a technology reporter at PlanetGov.com, one of the first online community centers for current and former government employees. He also spent five years at Government Computer News, another leading industry publication, covering a variety of federal IT-related issues.

Dorobek is a frequent speaker on issues involving the government IT industry, and has appeared as a frequent contributor to NewsChannel 8’s Federal News Today program. He began his career as a reporter at the Foster’s Daily Democrat, a daily newspaper in Dover, N.H. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California. He lives in Washington, DC.


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