U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS FINANCE CENTER BY R ACHEL A. THORNE, USACE Finance Center
PHOTO COURTESY USACE FINANCE CENTER
n 1996, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Finance Center (UFC) was officially established to reduce the cost and improve the overall quality of financial management for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). Development and deployment of the Corps of Engineers Financial Management System (CEFMS) II along with operating finance and accounting functions was consolidated into one location at USACE Finance Center in Millington, Tennessee. UFC is primarily responsible for setting the strategic direction and providing operational finance and accounting functions by assisting USACE worldwide with day-to-day support. This support includes, but is not limited to, the full range of customer service, payments, disbursing, accounting, and financial reporting for civil works and military programs’ appropriated funds, and revolving and trust funds. In addition, UFC is responsible for performing research, analysis, development, installation, and systems maintenance for the CEFMS II. This mission is accomplished with a dedicated, professional staff of accountants, accounting technicians, information management personnel, and various other support personnel. Along with the desire to maintain a highly motivated staff, the Finance Center is always aware and concerned about the costs of operation. UFC proactively searches for ways to reduce costs by identifying and eliminating duplicative processes, taking advantage of leading technology, and encouraging e-commerce. The center strives to achieve the commander’s vision while continually improving business processes and financial systems. The Finance Center’s Vision Statement includes four major tenets: • The premier, world-class provider of finance and accounting services. • The trusted, innovative financial partner of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. • One organization, one identity. • The employer of choice, providing a progressive and professional work environment. First, UFC aims to be the premier, world-class provider of finance and accounting services. In efforts to remain competitive and a best value to customers, the UFC will endeavor to adjust its structure to meet the needs of USACE, the Army, and all valued customers to further enhance performance in finance and accounting and revolutionize effectiveness. Second, UFC aspires to fully satisfy customer requirements and aggressively resolve problems in order to deliver best value, quality services. These high-quality results are achieved by implementing performance metrics to drive best business practices. Since the mission encompasses the world and brings together many diverse program areas of USACE, the Finance Center partners with the
Kevin Heath, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) disbursing officer, provides assistance to employees at the USACE Finance Center.
districts, divisions, labs, and separate field operating activities to leverage the complex, fully integrated financial management system, CEFMS II, to provide world-class support and accomplish the mission. Today, UFC and all USACE activities can query financial data in real time through a web browser. This innovative capability is demonstrated by increased use of e-commerce and e-government technology providing a paperless, seamless environment, increasing accuracy and lowering costs for customers. As a result, the UFC is truly the financial partner at work. Next, the third tenet, the consolidation of the UFC, was necessary to allow USACE to improve its internal operations; standardize and integrate the financial operations, procedures, and systems; implement best business practices; and reduce cost to the customers. Under this principle, the UFC persists to improve corporate quality and value. Finally, the Finance Center supports continuous learning for the workforce to ensure critical, high-quality skill sets. One of the main goals is to be able to develop the next generation of leadership by investing in the employees. Receiving a “Best Place to Work” award, UFC communicates openly and honestly; treats everyone with fairness and respect; follows through on commitments; and demonstrates accountability and integrity as a team. n U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Finance Center 5722 Integrity Dr. Building 787 Millington, TN 38054-5005 (901) 873-9000 www.usace.army.mil/Finance-Center/