Financial systems requirements set

Acquisition/Financial Systems Interface Requirements

A governmentwide organization has issued requirements for systems that support acquisition and financial management processes for federal agencies.

The document, "Acquisition/Financial Systems Interface Requirements," posted June 14, is the first time procurement and financial management officials have come together to create a common set of requirements for systems, said Karen Alderman, executive director of the Joint Financial Management Improvement Program. JFMIP is the governmentwide organization responsible for setting standards for agency financial-management systems, and it includes the General Accounting Office, the Office of Management and Budget, and the Treasury Department.

These kinds of requirements had never had been developed in a common way, she said, even though common information is necessary for both acquisition and financial management.

"The document provides a common reference to support federal agency efforts to improve financial management and acquisition systems and to comply with [the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act] and other relevant statutes," JFMIP officials said.

The document identifies the requirements that are necessary for a system to operate and comply with federal statutes, Alderman said.

Agencies must use these functional requirements, in addition to agency-unique mission requirements, in planning their financial management and acquisition system improvement projects, she said.

The publication of the document completes an 18-month effort that involved more then 60 senior-level acquisition and financial professionals from scores of federal agencies, she said.

The project was formally chartered by the Procurement Executive Council and the Chief Financial Officers Council and was led by Russ Ashworth, the Agriculture Department's senior procurement executive.

With the publication of the acquisition/financial systems document, JFMIP has published 10 of the 13 requirement documents. Requirements for dealing with nonincome tax revenues are in the works. Requirements for budget formulation and insurance claims are yet to be completed.

The requirement documents seek to synthesize what agencies need so that they have financial systems that meet federal laws.

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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