ASMC has a national essay competition every year to encourage authorship among members of the defense financial management community on particular topics. This year's essay topic was focused on identifying and adopting best practices that can improve performance. Authors were asked to describe what they would target as their three most important financial management goals and why if nominated by the President to serve as the Comptroller/Chief Financial Officer for the Department of Defense. Mr. Scott Bauer, a member of the ASMC Washington Chapter, won the competition based upon the submission of his article printed below. Mr. James Moyer, from the Fort Knox Chapter, placed second and Ms. Megan Graves, of the Washington Chapter, placed third in the ASMC Essay Award competition. Mr. Bauer's winning article is printed below.
Essay Question: "If the President nominated you to serve as Comptroller/Chief Financial Officer for the Department of Defense, what would you target as your three most important financial management goals and why?"
You know FIAR? You're hired!
New York isn't the only city that never sleeps. It was nearly midnight when I was contacted by the Presidential transition team regarding my official nomination as Comptroller/Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for the Department of Defense (DoD). My mind raced to consider the challenges faced by the Comptroller's office. If I got the job, I was aware I would inherent the massive Financial Improvement and Audit Readiness (FIAR) initiative-the Moon shot for DoD Financial Management. I was familiar with this forward thinking and much needed endeavor to increase the accountability of the Federal government. It seemed clear that an exciting new chapter in DoD financial management had already begun. FIAR was nearing its goal of a validated full financial statement for all DoD organizations. To effect such sweeping reforms, we would need to attract and retain the best people and provide them with secure data within a fiscally stable environment. As such, it did not take long for me to conceive three financial management goals to help ensure the success of this important program: 1) brand the Department as an employer of choice for financial management, 2) increase cyber funding and oversight and 3) continue the crusade to end sequestration.
The first objective of my tenure would be to brand the Defense Department as an employer of choice for all things financial. The Department must become more...