The Coast Guard’s transition to the Financial Systems Modernization Solution is underway, marking “truly the beginning of a new era for the United States Coast Guard’s financial management and procurement services,” according to the Deputy Commander of Resources and Chief Financial Officer, Rear Admiral Mark Fedor.
The Department of Homeland Security announced Friday that the transition, which was four weeks late when the go-live date was announced to USCG personnel last month, will lead to “greater security, data integrity , efficiency and flexibility” and “more accurate reporting, thus improving transparency and accountability.
The Office of Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) transitioned to the Oracle-based FSMS in October 2019 and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) transitioned in October 2020. Fedor noted in late October that the transition Coast Guard, intended to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of managing a $12 billion budget, is “the most complex simply because of our wide range of missions associated with it.”
“Modernizing our financial support systems is vital to the Department of Homeland Security and is one of our top priorities,” DHS acting chief financial officer Stacy Marcott said in a statement. “The new system will significantly improve the U.S. Coast Guard’s business systems, help employees be more productive, and allow them to achieve more reliable results when paying bills, purchasing goods and services, reporting and budget management, and much more.”
The FSMS will interface with many Coast Guard systems including ALMIS, NESSS, FLS, MISLE, DPOMS, MOSIS, Direct Access, AUXDATA, and ETS2, and connect to external applications from the National Finance Center, Defense Logistics Agency , the GSA and the Treasury Department. .
Coast Guard employees were told in May that the move to FSMS — “the largest financial system transition in Coast Guard history” that “will affect everyone in the Coast Guard” — would have built-in continuity for priority processing of Military, Civilian and Retirement Pay. Web-based FSMS training courses were announced at the time, with testing of the system taking place from July to early September. The old Core Accounting System Suite was closed the day before the start of the fiscal year on October 1, moving to the temporary transitional financial system.
The USCG has established an FSMS support team to help employees navigate the transition, with the majority of user queries being answered by posting questions online and others bumping into help tickets.
Fedor said he was “honored to help lead the Coast Guard through this financial transformation” and is “confident that the Service will be more efficient, adaptable to our dynamic operating environment and better money steward. taxpayers”.
“Hundreds of people have invested thousands of hours to make this vision a reality, so it’s fitting to celebrate this milestone achievement,” he said.
In a memo to staff last month, Fedor said that with FINCEN’s backlog of supplier invoices and employee vouchers expected to exceed 16,000, “priority will be given to utilities, small businesses, member payments and payment of large dollar contracts” while “the remaining invoices will generally be processed on a first-in, first-out basis.”