Financial Managers in the Federal Government Page: 3 of 32
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Recent legislation aimed at improving financial management has had a significant impact:. With the
enactment of the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act, Agency personnel are now
required to use new Federal accounting standards that are intended to provide greater accountability
and better decision-making in a cost effective manner. Requirements associated with the
Government Performance and Results Act have created a stronger and more visible link between the
use of financial resources and the accomplishment of program goals. Highly qualified and multi-
skilled personnel are needed to perform the more complex tasks demanded of Federal financial
managers to assist in having a more efficient and effective government.
The Human Resources: Committee of the U.S. Chief Financial Officers (CFO) Council and the Joint
Financial Management Improvement Program (JFMIP) have undertaken efforts to improve the
recruitment, training, retention, andperformance of Federalfinancial management personnel. Since
1995, they have centered on a well-defined set of core competencies for financial management
personnel. The core competency documents articulate the knowledge, skills, and abilities that are
appropriate to help individuals be successful in their jobs. A review board was established to ensure
the currency of these documents. Core competencies for accountants, budget analysts, and financial
managers were reviewed. We will be issuing the revisions separately for each of these occupations.
Note: The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issues all qualification and classification
standards. Therefore, position qualification and classification standards are not included in these
For the purpose of this document, .a Financial Manager is defined as: An individual who is
empowered to manage the financial resources of an organizational segment, field establishment,
bureau, department, independent Agency, or other organizational entity of the Federal government.
A financial manager isresponsible formanaging/supervising financial staff services, controlling the
financial resources of the organization, managing and analyzing financial data, developing financial
policies and procedures, and assisting seniormanagement in decision-making; goal development, and
overall management activities. This document, Core Competencies for Financial Managers in the
Federal Government, identifies financial manager core competencies under four general categories:
Strategic Vision, Resource and Program Management, Human Resources Management, and General.
These core competencies (knowledge, skills, and abilities) enable financial managers to meet the
challenges of today's changing environment and the future.
In addition to the technical core competencies, leadership competencies must also be considered.
Leadership competencies are the personal and professional attributes that are critical to successful
performance in many occupations. The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issued the
Leadership Effectiveness Framework (LEF). LEFdefines 27 competencies that are important for
effective performance at all leadership levels within the Federal Government. OPM identified five
fundamental executive qualifications found on its website: htp://www. opm.gov/ses/html/ecq4.htm.
In 1998, the CFO Council approved the Statement ofPrineiplesforFederalFinancialEducation and
Training(Appendix A). The Statement should be used in conjunction with this document and the
other core competencies documents (Appendix B). The core competencies documents will promote a
better understanding of human resources development in the Federal government. If you have any
comments or changes to this document, please contact the CFO Human Resources Committee or
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United States. General Accounting Office. Financial Managers in the Federal Government, text, October 1, 1999; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc292061/m1/3/: accessed December 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.