Financial Improvement Audit Readiness--how does it affect you?

  • Published
  • By Patricia A. Boettner
  • 934th Airlift Wing comptroller
With DoD the only federal agency that has failed to produce auditable financial records, the Secretary of Defense recently directed implementation of standard processes and procedures to ensure the agency can produce auditable financial records NLT September 2014.

Better known as Financial Improvement Audit Readiness (FIAR), most actions to date have been behind the scenes and focused on internal operations within the finance office. However, as DoD moves forward to create standard processes for all transactions involving payments, asset acquisition, inventory, etc., you will begin to see procedural changes at your level as well. In fact, many of you are already using new systems developed to help DoD achieve audit readiness.

The Defense Travel System (DTS) is one example for how FIAR is beginning to affect everyone in DoD. Right now, over 50 percentĀ of travel vouchers at the 934th are flowing through DTS and eventually 100 percentĀ of vouchers will be processed through this standard system. Another example affecting the 934th civilian workforce is the new automated timekeeping system being used to report labor and leave for all employees. These systems were specifically designed to promote stronger internal controls, improve accountability for taxpayer dollars, and save valuable time, effort, resources, and space.

Along with standardizing processes, FIAR compliance will be tested and measured on a continual basis to ensure proper procedures are being followed. The local FM office is already being tested in various areas on a monthly basis and this blanket of accountability will eventually extend into other divisions as well.

As DoD enters into an era of reduced resources, there is an immediate need to do more with less. Not only is it required by law, auditable records ensure taxpayer resources are properly allocated and accounted for and results in effective management of AF resources and assets.

Individuals must understand the role they play in this effort and submit necessary supporting documents, as required. Providing something as simple as a marriage or birth certificate to substantiate BAH entitlements, impacts the department's ability to validate financial statements. Your cooperation to provide required documents and learn new automated systems will be key to meeting DoD's FIAR compliance goal of September 2014.