Information Systems:

SSA's Financial Management of Information Systems Needs Improvement

IMTEC-88-15: Published: Aug 9, 1988. Publicly Released: Sep 8, 1988.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Social Security Administration's (SSA) overall management of its information technology systems budget.

GAO found that SSA: (1) needs to improve financial management of its information system, since it submitted incomplete and inaccurate budget documents for its planned automatic data processing acquisitions in fiscal year (FY) 1987; (2) did not maintain an integrated system to budget and account for information systems funds; and (3) accumulated an estimated $214 million in unobligated funds and failed to meet some of its goals in FY 1986 because of erroneous and incomplete budget information. GAO also found that SSA appointed a financial officer and created a review board to improve financial management and oversight of information system resources.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: A status report was sent to the Secretary of Health and Human Services. SSA will mail a copy of the report to GAO. SSA believes that actions on the recommendations were completed at the time the GAO report was issued. The HHS response to the GAO report documents the SSA position. Further, SSA believes that it is complying with OMB requirements.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Health and Human Services should direct the Commissioner of Social Security to establish financial management procedures that include submission of more accurate and more complete information in response to all Office of Management and Budget (OMB) information systems budget preparation and execution requirements.

    Agency Affected: Department of Health and Human Services

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Actions were completed on December 1988. SSA will mail a copy of the report to GAO.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Health and Human Services should direct the Commissioner of Social Security to establish financial management procedures that include integration of the budgeting and accounting systems for the information systems account.

    Agency Affected: Department of Health and Human Services

 

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