The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting how Federal agencies operate in many ways, including leveraging Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems – which includes financial systems – to make data-driven decisions.

Speaking at FedInsider’s Transforming Financial Management through IT virtual event on August 24, Greg Little, Deputy Comptroller for Enterprise Data & Business Performance for the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense at the Defense Department (DoD), and Christine Rodriguez, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy Financial Services Management (FMS), spoke about how the pandemic impacted the financial systems of their respective agencies.

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“What we’re really trying to make the future of [financial management] is one that we’re using data to drive decisions— we’ve tied resourcing to performance,” said Little.

“We have financial stewardship and, oh by the way, all of this is really automated,” he continued. “So, in that vein, the mission of my office is to improve enterprise-wide performance and data-driven decision making by accelerating digital transformation process improvement in the use of data and analytics so we have three major focus areas that I focus on and work with all my colleagues to try to achieve,” he added.

Little said those three areas are the agency’s enterprise data management analytics environment; robotic process automation; and portfolio management.

According to Rodriguez, financial management systems are just one piece of a business management ecosystem. Their overall objective is to deliver “compliant, modern, auditable financial management systems for the Navy,” she said.

“So, as we move forward with systems modernization, certainly audit is always a focus in what we do, but one of the first steps is honestly just shrinking our footprint,” said Rodriguez.

“We are migrating the U.S. Marine Corps on to the AI solution … and we’re also migrating commands on to our Navy [robotic process] solution. So, again, first shrinking the footprint, and then actually decommissioning or shutting down the systems that we’re moving off of,” she added.

Rodriguez said that Navy is also working through rationalizing existing systems to further reduce the branch’s footprint and leverage existing solutions.

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.