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The Financial Management Campaign Plan: Raising the Bar to Achieve Sustainment Excellence

As the Army continues the transformation of our operational forces, 9 years of prolonged conflict
and a continuous demand for trained and ready forces reveal a corresponding need to transform our generating forces to effectively support the Army Force Generation (ARFORGEN) cycle and meet the requirements of a 21st century Army.

The Army’s Financial Management (FM) community is fully engaged in adopting Army-wide end-to-end processes and developing a culture that encompasses enterprise management, cost and performance, and leaders capable of making resource-informed decisions. To methodically reach these objectives, the FM community recently developed the Financial Management Campaign Plan (FMCP). The FMCP represents the community’s realization that our current processes for supporting the ARFORGEN cycle require revision to meet the sustainment demands of the Operational Force engaged in full-spectrum operations.

The FMCP provides a methodology for improving five FM focus areas: warrior training and education, force design, FM systems requirements, doctrine, and communication. Enhancing each of these areas improves FM capabilities embedded within theater and expeditionary sustainment commands and sustainment brigades by providing highly agile and adaptive FM warriors who are trained and ready to execute full-spectrum operations.

The Catalyst for Change

Two significant events jump-started the initial de­velopment of the FMCP: a detailed white paper and a well-planned leaders training summit. In October 2009, Colonel Troy A. Clay, who is now the commander of the Army Finance Command, wrote “Strategy to Develop and Sustain Financial Management Capability in Support of Our Expeditionary Army.” This white paper surveyed the FM landscape, defined the FM community’s challenges, and proposed some possible solutions to those challenges.

To explore these possible solutions, the commandant of the Army Financial Management School, Colonel Milton L. Sawyers, hosted an FM training summit in mid-December 2009 that brought together more than 60 FM leaders from key organizations throughout the FM community. During the summit, the participants developed and refined the five focus areas in accordance with the white paper, the Army Capstone Concept, and emerging FM doctrine. These five refined focus areas served as the underpinnings for developing the FMCP.

The Financial Management Campaign Plan

After significant contributions from across the en­tire FM community, the Army Financial Management School released the completed FMCP in January of this year. The “Mission Statement” and “End State” serve as the anchor points for all lines of operation and supporting tasks. (See chart below.)

The FMCP employs logical lines of operations (LOOs) to link multiple decisive points and tasks to achieve the desired end state. The LOOs are being executed through 14 supporting tasks, which are assigned to FM responsible organizations (ROs) that developed and are now executing their implementation plans. Each implementation plan consists of achievable, results-driven tasks. As ROs progress on their assigned supporting tasks, they are reaching out to the numerous stakeholders, such as the Defense Finance and Accounting Service, U.S. Army Central Command, the Army Forces Command, and Headquarters, Department of the Army, to ensure that all concerns are addressed fully and communicated to the FM leadership. The chart below shows the supporting tasks for each LOO.

Achieving the goals of the FMCP is a monumental undertaking that requires collaborative planning and a responsive execution architecture within the FM community. The Army Financial Management School, through the Army Soldier Support Institute and the Sustainment Center of Excellence, continues to serve as the operational element for monitoring and reporting execution of the FMCP to senior FM leaders.

Regardless of which organizations fulfill RO responsibilities, the success of the campaign plan relies on the coordinated efforts of the entire sustainment community. With the FMCP now in full swing, the Army FM community is better postured to respond to the continuous cycle of adaptive innovation, experimentation, and experience within our Army.

The FMCP is a living campaign plan with the potential to expand and contract as supporting tasks are completed and new supporting tasks are identified. The plan demonstrates our commitment to meet the needs of the 21st century Army engaged in full-spectrum operations. The FMCP requires continuous assessment of the FM landscape. The challenge is to anticipate and identify the next paradigm shift, whether that shift emerges as a result of a new system, a variation in structure, or any other significant change in the operational environment.

Regardless of the challenges, our success depends on our partnership with the sustainment community. Working together, we will build, train, and sustain a campaign quality force able to provide full-spectrum financial management and sustainment to warfighting commanders.

Lieutenant General Edgar E. Stanton III is the Military Deputy for Budget to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Financial Management and Comptroller. He previously served as commander of the 18th Finance Group (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, North Carolina; commandant of the Army Finance School at Fort Jackson, South Carolina; Deputy Chief of Staff for Resource Management for the Army Training and Doctrine Command; commanding general of the Army Soldier Support Institute at Fort Jackson; and commanding general of the 336th Finance Command in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom at Camp Doha, Kuwait.

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