Shared Services

DHS plans to expand shared services

Chip Fulghum DHS

Shared services are a key part of the Department of Homeland Security's plan to keep its accounting ledgers in order in the coming years, the agency's top financial officer said.

Chip Fulghum, DHS undersecretary for management and chief financial officer, said DHS' inspector general has given the agency clean financial audits in its past three reports. Those clean audits are due in part to efforts to establish stricter management practices and services, he said during a speech at AFCEA's Homeland Security Conference on June 22.

Central to that effort are the shared management services for financial, acquisition and property operations that DHS receives through the Interior Department's Interior Business Center (IBC).

DHS' Domestic Nuclear Detection Office began using Interior's shared services when the two agencies kicked off a three-year financial system modernization effort in 2014.

Fulghum said the Transportation Security Administration will switch to IBC services by the end of fiscal 2018, and the Coast Guard will make the move by the end of fiscal 2019. Other DHS agencies will follow.

He told FCW that within five years, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will adopt IBC's shared-services suite.

Customs and Border Protection and the Secret Service have modernized their own systems so they won't use shared services, he added.

During his remarks at the conference, Fulghum acknowledged that the switch to shared services "isn't easy." Identifying the areas in which agencies can share services and making the change are complicated processes, but he added that the effort is worth it.

About the Author

Mark Rockwell is a senior staff writer at FCW, whose beat focuses on acquisition, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Energy.

Before joining FCW, Rockwell was Washington correspondent for Government Security News, where he covered all aspects of homeland security from IT to detection dogs and border security. Over the last 25 years in Washington as a reporter, editor and correspondent, he has covered an increasingly wide array of high-tech issues for publications like Communications Week, Internet Week, Fiber Optics News, tele.com magazine and Wireless Week.

Rockwell received a Jesse H. Neal Award for his work covering telecommunications issues, and is a graduate of James Madison University.

Click here for previous articles by Rockwell. Contact him at mrockwell@fcw.com or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.


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