U.S. Agency for International Development
The USAID Haiti Integrated Financial Management System (IFMS) is part of the Program of USAID/Haiti Democracy and Governance Office. When the project started in March 2005, its main goal was to assist the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) and other Government of Haiti (GOH) entities in their anti-corruption efforts, implement an IFMS, improve internal controls, engage in activities that will lead to long-term changes and bring ultimate contributions to sustainable systems and processes, and overall sustainable development.
Phase One was responsible for conducting a thorough planning assessment in collaboration with the Mission to achieve the following goals: baseline understanding of the current status of the physical infrastructure, software, and use of the network and system; define the future vision of the IFMS; and recommended activities to achieve the future IFMS vision.
Why This Matters To You
To help manage operations efficiently, Agency field officers expressed a need for standardized IT tools. Ability to manage processes and information efficiently would free up time to engage in the higher level tasks that officers are asked to perform: project design, host country negotiations, strategy implementation, etc. To be clear, they were actually looking for a helping hand to implement deep reforms to basic business processes – setting a stage for a management information system to help mission operations.
To design great IT tools that fit mission needs, the best place to start is with actual day-to-day business processes. Thus, when processes are standardized, the door is opened for Agency-wide IT systems that support them to do their jobs. Business processes and IT systems are inextricably tied together; it is the process that keeps the data current in the system and the resulting reports that help accomplish the goal of the process. The hand-in-glove relationship between processes and systems is why it is so important to get the processes right from the start.
How We Helped
Phase One helped the Agency conduct an assessment of ‘As-is’ core mission processes called “Mission Orders”. The project inventoried existing Mission Orders, and helped develop standard versions incorporating best practices in the higher level tasks of strategy and project design.
Next, Phase One helped identify and analyze existing mission information systems – highlighting gaps in capabilities not supported by current IT systems and redundancies in those supported by multiple systems.
By standardizing business processes and analyzing existing IT systems, Phase One helped the Agency achieve an important goal of identifying and documenting high level system and business requirements for the future mission-focused system. The project also determined innovations and best practices worth leveraging for the future system.
Underlying this effort, Phase One helped the Agency implement change management in accelerating the adoption of Agency reforms in field missions – by operationalizing Agency policies through standardized processes and creating enterprise systems to facilitate its adoption.