Federal Financial Shared Services

I attended the AGA Federal Shared Services Summit last week and came away thinking there is still a lot of work to do.  This is a case of “the spirit is willing but the body is weak.”  There is no doubt that agencies must move to a shared services model in order to make ends meet in the current fiscal environment, but the devil is in the details.  What is the motivation for agencies to become Shared Service Providers?  Is it the prospect of more money?  And why would an agency want to cede control of its financial system to another agency? I have experienced these questions in my not-for-profit life as we have tried to control “back office” costs.  It was ultimately a question of survival.  Without sharing back office functions, we would not survive.  In the case of a government agency, they will continue to survive, so where is the motivation to go to the shared services model?  I believe there needs to be clear incentives for agencies to make the shift and I don’t see them…..at least not yet.


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