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information. Currently, most of the AOC's various systems do not share information or common data definitions. The implementation of a new Financial Management System (FMS) and the integration of other systems with FMS will be a major step towards AOC's system integration goal. The FMS implementation will also lead to the AOC's first preparation and audit of financial statements. These goals are fully consistent with the Vision Statement of the Legislative Branch Financial Manager's Council, which the agency has adopted. Currently the AOC has implemented the Standard General Ledger of FMS and is in process of implementing additional modules.

The successful implementation of FMS is a critical goal for the AOC. The new system will provide the AOC with a financial system that is timely, accurate, compliant with Federal standards, and easily integrated with other systems. AOC requires a system that is compliant with federal standards in order to meet the goal of passing a financial audit conducted under federal auditing guidelines. A modern system that is easily integrated with other systems is required for AOC to be able to integrate financial data with the facilities management system (CAFM), the Project Information Center system (PIC) and Human Resource Systems. The AOC requires more up-to-date and accurate information in order to better manage its resources and to be fully accountable to Congress regarding expenditure of appropriated funds.

The new Financial Management System is being implemented in phases. The first phase implemented the Standard General Ledger on October 1, 2000. The second phase is currently underway and will include the implementation of the budget execution, purchasing, accounts payable, and disbursement modules of the new system and will phase out most of the old system. Subsequent phases will include the implementation of a contracting procurement module, the implementation of a fixed asset module, the implementation of a new Inventory system and the integration of the facility management system (CAFM). The human resources system will also be enhanced to provide the financial system with more detailed labor information for performing cost accounting.

In order to ensure all the proper steps are taken in the implementation of a new system, and to ensure continued support from top management, the AOC has organized a steering committee made up of executives from various AOC user groups and financial system executives from GAO, the LOC and other Legislative Branch agencies. The purpose of the committee is to provide advice and feedback regarding the implementation of a new financial management system and to provide a forum for addressing high level project issues. An internal FMS Steering Committee has also been organized to resolve lower level issues.

The Legislative Branch Financial Manager's Council (LBFMC) is currently pursuing an initiative to have all Legislative Branch agencies eventually implement the same financial management software. The AOC's phased approach to implementing FMS through a crossservicing arrangement with another Federal agency is consistent with this LBFMC initiative. In addition, the AOC participated in the LBFMC Concept of Operations Study and is prepared to participate in the documentation of the requirements.

Pending approval of FY2002 funding, a pro forma audit of the FY2002 financial statements will be performed. A pro forma audit evaluates the sufficiency of the financial statements without issuing a formal audit opinion and without performing an in-depth review of the detailed transactions that make up the balances. The pro forma audit will prepare the AOC for the full audit that is expected to be performed for fiscal year 2003 (ending Sept. 30, 2003). Since the new financial management system is being implemented in a phased approach, this is the soonest a full audit will be feasible. Funding for a full audit will be requested for FY2003.

Implementing a new financial system requires the hiring of additional staff that are qualified to perform the new functions being provided with the new system. A staff of five systems accountants were hired to perform the implementation. The implementation of the general ledger in Phase 1 required the Accounting office to hire two additional accountants to maintain the general ledger. As the AOC continues implementing FMS, additional staffing requirements will need to be addressed.

III. Accomplishments over the past year

Hired staff and organized the Financial Management Systems Office. The FMS Office
currently consists of four Systems Accountants and one Supervisory Systems
Accountant. This is the absolute minimum number of staff required to perform the FMS
implementation over a multi-year phased approach. A vacancy announcement is currently
pending for the hiring of an Accounting Technician to assist in data entry and reporting
tasks.

Implemented Phase 1 of the FMS project

Phase 1 of the FMS project was successfully implemented on schedule and within budget on October 1, 2000. Phase 1 implemented the Standard General Ledger for the AOC. Interfaces were developed with the Computer Applications Specialists (CAS) accounting system and the NFC payroll system. All transactions that occur in these two systems ... update the FMS general ledger on a daily basis. The AOC can now issue financial statements in accordance with Standard General Ledger guidelines.

The implementation of Phase 1 required the Accounting Division to pursue the hiring of two additional accountants to maintain the general ledger and perform reconciliations. The vacancy announcements have been issued and staff members are expected to be hired by May, 2002.

Maintained Production FMS

The FMS Office successfully maintained the new financial system from October 1, 2000 to present, by processing the daily interfaces, performing reconciliations, issuing monthly Status of Funds reports, preparing ad-hoc reports, and providing support to end users.

Began Phase 2 of the FMS Implementation

Phase 2 of the FMS project began on October 1, 2000. This phase includes the implementation of budget, procurement, receiving, accounts payable and disbursement processes in FMS. It also includes an interface with the Project Information Center (PIC) system and an interface with the CAS inventory system. Phase 2 is currently on schedule to begin production operations on March 1, 2002, however it is only funded through September 30, 2001. The successful implementation of Phase 2 is dependent on receiving sufficient FY2002 funding.

IV. Upcoming Financial Management Initiatives

Complete the Implementation of Phase 2 of the Financial Management System (FMS)

Phase 2 is the implementation of the Budget, Purchasing, Accounts Payable and Disbursement subsystems of FMS. This phase is currently in process. The following tasks will be performed to complete the implementation of Phase 2 of FMS:

Complete the documentation of user requirements for the procurement,
accounting, budgeting and jurisdiction offices

Determine the system configuration to meet user requirements

Perform a pilot test of the configured system

Develop an interface with the Project Information Center (PIC) System

Develop an interface with the CAS inventory system

Set-up software on PC's for up to 200 users

Develop software to convert open obligation data at the detail level

Develop end-user reports

Develop end-user data entry procedures

Train system users and provide production user support

Phase 2 is funded through September 2001. The successful implementation of Phase 2 on
March 1, 2002 is dependent on receiving sufficient FY2002 funding.

The implementation of Phase 2 is expected to increase workloads in the jurisdictions and their staffing requirements. In order to be able to take advantage of the new functions being implemented with FMS and to keep the data accurate, the right people are needed in the right places.

Continue Maintenance of Production FMS

The FMS Office will continue to maintain the new financial system for Phase 1 by processing the daily interfaces, performing reconciliations, issuing monthly Status of

Funds reports' preparing ad-hoc reports, and providing support to end users. An annual close for fiscal year 2001 will be performed in October 2001. On March 1, 2002, the FMS Office will begin maintaining FMS for Phase 2 which includes supporting up to 200 new users across all AOC jurisdictions. This also will require the FMS office to keep a training plan in place to continue to train new users on the system.

Begin Phase 3 of the FMS project - Implementation of a Contracting Procurement module

Phase 3 will implement the AMS Procurement Desktop (PD) software package. Procurement Desktop is a stand-alone procurement system that interfaces with the FMS system. The AOC will use the PD package to perform contracting activities. The workload in the contracting office has increased significantly because of the contracting out of more construction projects. Implementing PD will allow the contracting office to perform contracting activities more timely and efficiently. PD provides robust functionality for keeping track of solicitations, contracts, and contract amendments. It provides functionality to allow the AOC to load all contract clauses and pick and choose the proper clauses for each contract. It also produces the standard federal government contract forms. Activities to implement Phase 3 will begin in January, 2002 with a production date scheduled for October 1, 2002. The implementation of Phase 3 is dependent on receiving sufficient Fiscal Year 2002 funding.

Begin Additional Phases of the FMS Implementation

Depending on the receipt of sufficient funding for FY2003, and the outcome of the LBFMC "common system” initiative, the FMS phased implementation will proceed as follows:

Phase 4 Implementation of a Fixed Asset module

Phase 4 will implement the Fixed Assets module. With the implementation of
Phase 4 the AOC will have automated records of its fixed assets and will be able
to record automated depreciation entries in the general ledger. Proper accounting
of fixed assets is required to receive an unqualified audit opinion. Phase 4 is
expected to begin production operations on October, 2003. The implementation of
Phase 4 is dependent on receiving sufficient Fiscal Year 2003 funding.

Phase 4 is expected to increase staffing requirements in order for the AOC to
properly maintain the fixed asset records.

Phase 5 Implementation of a new Inventory System

Phase 5 will implement a new Inventory system that interfaces with the core accounting system. The current inventory system needs to be replaced because it

cannot effectively interface with FMS real-time, and it is lacking some basic inventory functionality. A modern, off-the-shelf, stand-alone inventory product that meets all of the AOC's basic inventory needs will be procured and integrated with FMS. With the implementation of Phase 5, the AOC will completely eliminate the CAS system. Phase 5 is tentatively scheduled for production operations on October 1, 2003. The implementation of Phase 5 is dependent on receiving sufficient Fiscal Year 2003 funding.

In order to properly implement the new inventory system, a Business Process Reengineering analysis needs to be performed. The current inventory process needs to be studied and improved prior to implementing the new system.

Phase 5 is expected to increase staffing requirements in order for the AOC to properly maintain the inventory records.

Subsequent Phase - Integration of FMS with the CAFM system

In order to gather costing data for strategic decision making, CAFM will need to receive cost data from FMS related to work orders. It is expected that FMS will provide CAFM with inventory costs and labor costs by work order. In order for FMS to provide this information, the Time and Attendance system and the Inventory system (which will feed the data to FMS) need to be enhanced or replaced to allow the entry of work order numbers in the originating systems.

Subsequent Phase - Implementation of a new Time & Attendance System

The AOC currently uses the USDA NFC Payroll/Personnel system. The time and attendance data is recorded through the NFC's PC-Tare system. A new or enhanced Time & Attendance system is required for the AOC to record project data and work order data on a daily basis for labor. This will eliminate several “cuff” systems that track daily labor and allow the accumulation of work order cost data in FMS.

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