Commerce OIG Issues Management Alert on Financial Systems Modernization Program; Frederick Meny Quoted

2 mins read

The Department of Commerce’s (DOC) office of inspector general has issued a management alert stating that the Business Applications Solution (BAS) program’s focus on technology may miss business process-related risks.

The BAS program intends to modernize the department’s financial applications and processes through the procurement of cloud-based, commercial off-the-shelf software, according to the OIG alert dated April 19.

The OIG found that the program lacks a business process reengineering plan and the ongoing change efforts do not adhere to best practices, such as documenting existing processes for financial management and using a proven methodology for process improvement.

“These conditions present risk that financial management processes may not be adequately supported by the new BAS system, which could ultimately lead to schedule delays and cost increases,” Frederick Meny, assistant inspector general for audit and evaluation, wrote in the alert. 

“This approach may also miss an opportunity to fundamentally improve how the Department conducts its financial business.”

The OIG said it is not asking for a formal response since department officials were already notified prior to the release of the alert and that it will include the actions taken in response to the issues raised in an “audit report to be issued at a later date.”

In April 2020, the department awarded a potential $341 million contract to Accenture Federal Services (AFS) to support the BAS program by providing full system development lifecycle services to help consolidate finance and other business applications into a single suite of systems. 

The contract also includes the acquisition of hosting and licensing services for three new BAS software apps: Oracle Electronic Business Suite for financial management, Sunflower for property management and Procurement Request Information System Management for acquisition management, according to the alert.

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