JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas -- (Sept. 2, 2016) The Mission and Installation Contracting Command resource management team has achieved 100 percent compliance with the DOD Financial Management Certification program.The certification program supports the professional development of the financial management workforce and provides a framework for a standard body of knowledge across the workforce.Individuals earning certification at Level 3 were Betty Harris, Karen Millward-Alston and Carmen Matos. Earning Level 2 certification were Angie Nichols, Edwin Ortiz, Mary Miller, Shawn Jones, Suzy Cunningham, Carol Dyling, Laura Queen, Jeanette Lynch, Vickie Kern and Sha-Tamara Hopkins.The program, implemented two years ago, is mandatory for everyone in a financial series position. Certification levels are dependent on the individual's grade and their positions. DOD officials set June 30, 2016, as a deadline for everyone to be certified. As of that date, 8,000 people were certified. The Army Materiel Command achieved 95 percent compliance, and the MICC was 100 percent compliant.
"I believe the most beneficial aspect of the certification process is the importance of Army Audit Readiness and the significance of our role in resource management to help the Army meet its DOD requirements to have auditable financial statements by 2017," said Karen Millward-Alston, deputy chief of staff, MICC Resource Management. "The Financial Improvement and Audit Readiness Plan to improve financial management, prioritize improvement activities, strengthen internal controls, and ultimately to achieve audit ability was a prominent theme in the certification training, and we implement those checks and processes on a daily basis. The certifications have helped us to pass almost all of the audits we have received so far. Also, I believe we have sound internal controls and business processes, and am confident that we are doing the right things to sustain audit readiness."Every two years certification needs to be renewed, with 60 hours of continuous education and training credits at Level 2 and 80 hours of CETs at Level 3."Earning CETs through financial management and leadership-related education helps us to keep our skills sharp, learn new techniques, and stand ready for any fiscal challenges our command may face now or in the future," said Dr. Betty Harris, a member of the MICC's Directorate of Contracting Operations.The program requires a certain number of course hours in financial management competency-based and leadership development training, completion of standardized training in areas such as audit readiness and fiscal law, and a specified number of years of work experience. At Level 2, individuals must have four years of financial management experience, of which two must be within the DOD. Additionally, a formal three-month developmental assignment is recommended but not mandatory. At Level 3, individuals must have eight years of experience, of which two years also must be within the DOD. Additionally, a formal three-month developmental assignment is required.As a member of the financial management workforce with a background in auditing, Harris said her passion for completing the certification was to assist in the effort to achieve auditable financial statements."With the certification, coupled with my certified public accountant license, I employ a greater level of credibility when providing guidance and recommendations on issues related to fiduciary responsibilities, audit triggers, and internal control monitoring for the MICC acquisition workforce," Harris said.In fiscal 2015, the resource management team managed $123.2 million, of that amount; $109 million was across six sub-activity groups in Army operations and maintenance funds, $5.5 million in reimbursable, $5.7 million in Army Reserve operations and maintenance funds, and $160,000 in overseas contingency operations.DOD Instruction 1300.26 states that members of the financial management workforce are required to participate in the certification program; therefore, achieving certification is a condition of employment in those members of the financial management workforce must be able to obtain the appropriate certification level for their positions within two years after assignment.The Army's financial management workforce includes military and civilian personnel who perform work in financial management positions. These areas include military and civilian positions that perform, supervise, or manage work of a fiscal, financial management, accounting, auditing, cost or budgetary nature, or that require the performance of financial management-related work.The resource management team leads the management of MICC financial and labor resources for the command. Millward-Alston guides the resource management team and their processes. She directs the team as they execute programming, planning, budgeting, accounting, and funds control functions across the command, and provide policy, advice, and assistance with all MICC resource management needs. Millward-Alston is responsible for budget preparation and resource management analysis and interpretation.The resource management team is part of a command staff headquartered at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, Texas. The staff guides an organization made up of about 1,500 military and civilian members assigned to three contracting support brigades and a field directorate office throughout the United States who are responsible for contracting for Soldiers. In fiscal 2015, the command executed more than 36,000 contract actions valued at more than $5.2 billion across the Army, including $2.25 billion to American small businesses. The command also managed more than 600,000 Government Purchase Card Program transactions in fiscal 2015 valued at an additional $747 million.