Major Management Challenges and Program Risks:

Agency for International Development

OCG-99-16: Published: Jan 1, 1999. Publicly Released: Jan 1, 1999.

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Benjamin F. Nelson
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As part of its Performance and Accountability Series, GAO provided information on the major management challenges and program risks facing the Agency for International Development (AID).

GAO noted that: (1) AID's effort to develop and implement its New Management System (NMS), which is meant to consolidate primary information systems into a single integrated network, has not been fully successful; (2) the NMS is only partially functional and has created problems in agency operations; (3) in 1996, AID deployed the system without sufficient testing, and subsequent difficulties forced AID to suspend its use for most administrative functions in overseas missions in April 1997; (4) despite an expenditure of at least $92 million to date, the NMS is not likely to be fully operational and compliant with federal accounting standards for several more years; (5) until then, AID will not have accurate information to ensure that its operations and programs are being managed in a cost-effective and efficient manner; (6) AID's computer systems in headquarters and in its field offices are not yet equipped to handle the year 2000 problem; (7) AID has not taken adequate steps to address this problem and has not developed contingency plans to ensure continuity of all of its mission-critical business operations; (8) although AID has requested supplemental funds to accelerate the year 2000 compliance process, it continues to face a serious risk that its systems and operations could fail or be significantly degraded; (9) AID continues to face financial management challenges; (10) the lack of an integrated financial management system and the existence of material control weaknesses hinder the agency's ability to produce auditable financial statements; (11) as in the previous year, AID's Office of Inspector General (OIG) was unable to express an opinion on the agency's financial statements for fiscal year 1997; (12) the process of preparing financial statements and subjecting them to independent audit is the first step in generating complete, reliable, and timely financial information for decisionmakers at all levels; (13) without financial integration and strong controls, AID's systems are out of compliance with federal accounting and management requirements; and (14) AID has designated a Chief Information Officer and NMS program manager and made the year 2000 problem its highest information technology priority, and is submitting a plan to address some of its financial management deficiencies over the next 5 years.

Below are the reports in this series:

High-Risk Series: An Update HR-99-1, Jan 1, 1999

Performance and Accountability Series:

Major Management Challenges and Risks: An Executive Summary OCG-99-ES, Feb 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: A Governmentwide Perspective OCG-99-1, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Agriculture OCG-99-2, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Commerce OCG-99-3, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Defense OCG-99-4, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Education OCG-99-5, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Energy OCG-99-6, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Health and Human Services OCG-99-7, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Housing and Urban Development OCG-99-8, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of the Interior OCG-99-9, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Justice OCG-99-10, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Labor OCG-99-11, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of State OCG-99-12, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Transportation OCG-99-13, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of the Treasury OCG-99-14, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Department of Veterans Affairs OCG-99-15, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Agency for International Development OCG-99-16, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Environmental Protection Agency OCG-99-17, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: National Aeronautics and Space Administration OCG-99-18, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Nuclear Regulatory Commission OCG-99-19, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Risks: Social Security Administration OCG-99-20, Jan 1, 1999

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: U.S. Postal Service OCG-99-21, Jan 1, 1999

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