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“Integrating these reforms into an effective performance management system is an enormous challenge for an agency’s IT systems.”

- John Mercer

GPRA Solutions - Apollo
An Integrated Financial Performance and Reporting System

Since 1997, Advanced DataTools has worked with several federal government agencies on the forefront of improving government operations, and can assist your organization in successfully implementing the following enhancements to your financial reporting systems:

  • Providing the capability for your agency to tie performance goals to workload measures and accomplishments within one integrated web-based program.
  • Promoting cost-based management by developing a high-performance financial data warehouse that enables managers to analyze, evaluate, and report on all aspects of your agency’s finances.
  • Integrating budget, performance, and financial information and making it available to all agency managers in an accurate, timely, and easily accessible format.

The resulting Integrated Financial and Performance Reporting System, Apollo, can enable your agency to comply with the Government Performance Reporting Act (GPRA) and the Budget and Performance Initiative of the President’s Management Agenda, and save your organization millions of dollars and thousands of staff hours.

Apollo is comprised of nine distinct types of activities. Two of these activities – finance and payroll/HR – are typically handled by legacy or COTS systems. Apollo can interface with these systems on a nightly basis to link financial data with performance and workload data, and can maintain strict audit-trail records at the lowest level of detail to ensure full auditability of all data in the system.

Apollo includes the following components, and can be enhanced by including Executive Dashboards and a GIS component:

  • Budgeting
  • Performance & Workload Management
  • Workforce Plan
  • Financial Management Information
  • Labor Cost Information

Budgeting – The Budget Planning System allows staff at all levels of an agency to define projects that fit into the themes and priorities of the organization’s budget strategy, and to roll those projects into a comprehensive funding plan for all programs and all levels (from HQ to field office). The plan compiles and tracks multi-year information, and supports agencies preparation for submission of the budget to the department, OMB, and Congress.

Performance and Workload Management – The Performance and Workload Management System enables agencies to set targets at the national, state, and field levels, as appropriate, to enter actual accomplishments at the lowest organization level so they are auditable, to roll up and summarize performance and workload measures as required by the organization, and ties the workload measures to the financial data for full activity-based accounting and cost management. It should be noted that in order to accomplish this, agencies will need to ensure that timesheets and other obligations are coded to include cost accounting for workload measures.

Workforce Plan – The workforce plan consists of identifying the staff and skills that will be required to carry out the performance and workload targets for the given budget year, and integrating that information with the program budget.

Financial Management Information – The Financial Management System is a data warehouse that pulls GL, organization, fund, program, BOC, and selected other data fields nightly from FFS/FFIS, and is cross-walked with agency cost, performance, and workload targets at all organization levels to enable comparisons of “actual spending with anticipated costs by program goal” as required by the President’s mandate for performance budgeting. To ensure auditability of cost data, load balances are compared each night to the source data prior to the data warehouse load. If data warehouse load figures do not balance with the source data, the load is delayed until the problem is identified and resolved.

Labor Cost Information – In order to determine the actual labor cost of projects and to prorate overhead expenses across all projects, labor detail data is extracted from the payroll system, including hours reported on individual personnel timesheets by organization, fund, program, BOC, etc., and the cost of those hours is prorated across projects. To maintain performance and eliminate duplication of data, labor detail data is typically stored in the financial data warehouse.

With all nine components of Apollo in place, agencies can compile and manage budgets that reflect their allocations and actual costs. Within minutes, an agency can use the data recorded to perform any or all of the following:

  • Respond to a Congressional data call regarding a fund
  • Report on what funds were appropriated by Congress down to the field office level
  • Identify what funds have been collected from the public
  • Report on all expenses to-date by project and program
  • Indicate what has been accomplished with those funds, and
  • Report on the customer satisfaction ratings.

Agency staff at all levels can view their office’s current budget status, YTD workload and performance measure accomplishments, as well as what must be done to meet their goals for the year. If system access allows (depends on department and agency requirements), staff can view their performance as it compares to other offices and identify best practices to investigate and adopt as appropriate.

Executive Dashboards - Executive dashboards - at-a-glance, interactive views - can be deployed to significantly simplify the senior staff's access to the various components of the system, and can be quickly modified to allow daily tracking of the agency's most current issues and urgent concerns.

Geographic Information System - Agencies can choose to implement a Geographic Information System component, which uses maps to enable users to drill into the smallest geographic component stored in the system (county, congressional district, street, etc.). This would enable decision makers to very rapidly identify and focus on locations with costs well inside or outside planned costs, and can drill into the detail to view a wide range of data (i.e. census, payroll, fees, permits, crops, grants).

See Successes for more information on our GPRA solutions in action.