Financial Management

State's Systems Planning Needs to Focus on Correcting Long-standing Problems Gao ID: AIMD-94-141 August 12, 1994

The State Department recognizes that it has serious internal control and financial management problems, and it has set out on the path to change. However, State has not yet positioned itself to make any substantive changes. Without an overall management structure and agencywide information strategy plan to guide the development of the Integrated Financial Management System, State runs a high risk of perpetuating its long-standing financial management problems, detracting from its ability to meet Chief Financial Officer Act goals of producing auditable financial statements and implementing the standard general ledger, and depriving its managers of the information they need to make sound decisions.

GAO found that: (1) State has not adequately planned or managed its new financial management improvement initiatives; (2) State has not documented its target financial management structure, the integration of subsidiary systems into the structure, or how IFMS relates to its other long-term improvement efforts; (3) State's current major system plans do not address agencywide needs and issues or State's reported financial management weaknesses; (4) State does not have definitive descriptions of its current financial management system structure or its ongoing systems development projects; (5) State's lack of an agencywide information resources management (IRM) structure contributes to its financial management problems and its lack of knowledge of its systems and projects; and (6) State has prematurely issued a solicitation for all IFMS requirements as well as any necessary maintenance of its existing financial management systems.


Our recommendations from this work are listed below with a Contact for more information. Status will change from "In process" to "Open," "Closed - implemented," or "Closed - not implemented" based on our follow up work.

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