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GAO Reports Impact of OMB 2010 Financial Financial Project Halt

Site: HHS.gov

In 2010, the Office of Management and Budget halted 30 financial management projects to review how they measured up to new policies aimed to reduce cost and conduct modernization.

Government agencies told the Government Accountability Office that they saw little impact on the cost and completion time of several programs following OMB’s policies and reviews but saw shortcomings from the project freeze, Federal Computer Week reports.

According to the GAO, most agencies reported no change or not knowing the long-term project cost or completion time would change as a result of OMB’s actions and recommendations.

OMB instructed agencies to find ways to better align projects and to not enter any new contractual agreements while reviews were being conducted, the report said.

Agencies told GAO that the their focus adopting critical business needs inhibited their ability to improve accounting and reporting functions, the report said.

GAO said agencies also reported difficulties securing and implementing new technology since OMB did not approve the agency’s plan to upgrade to current accounting software.

Agencies reported standardizing internal data and processes were a challenge as a result of the project freeze.

Twelve of 22 agencies said standardization was among the top challenges and nine said funding delays were a significant or moderate challenge since federal managers cannot begin new projects until funding is secured.

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