Effective, timely, transparent and accurate financial, budgetary and resource management and reporting
By the end of 2013, OCHA aims to have created a financial-management culture based on increased accountability and stronger decision-making capabilities for programme managers. Access to integrated data systems should inform OCHA’s financial, budgetary, resource mobilization and reporting transactions. The systems need to be rigorous, effective and fully documented, with aligned budgeting and income forecasting.
The management of OCHA’s country-based pooled funds must be meticulous, meeting external stakeholders’ requirements. To that end, ERF global guidelines have been disseminated to provide country offices with the appropriate tools to support Humanitarian Coordinators in coherently managing ERFs. The guidelines provide clearer instructions related to financial reporting and external auditing for projects funded through the ERFs. OCHA will roll out the implementation of an ERF monitoring and reporting framework and develop a grant management system to streamline the operation of country-based pooled funds. This system will facilitate the work of country offices, while also enabling the centralization of data for programmatic and financial analysis and reporting. Altogether, these measures will ensure OCHA has improved capacity to manage and operate country-based pooled funds, and that proper control mechanisms are in place.
There has been steady and consistent progress towards more predictable and flexible funding, and on donor reporting. Reporting on income and expenditure has increasingly been automated, enabling programme managers to monitor their finances, plan resource mobilization and allow effective budgeting. Senior management has also adopted an Internal Control Framework that sets out the separation of responsibilities and internal controls in place to ensure proper stewardship and accountability for the organization’s resources.
In 2013, key initiatives on financial, budgetary and resource management issues include:
a) Further development of effective ERF/CHF internal monitoring and control mechanisms.
b) Well-organized budgeting procedures linked to income forecasts and work planning.
c) Preparedness for International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) implementation.
d) Roll-out of the Programme and Financial Information Management system (ProFi).
e) Outlining guidelines to enable donors to evaluate project implementation based on public-sector accounting standards in line with reporting provided by other UN agencies.
f) Working with the Controller’s Office to explore ways to better manage OCHA’s trust funds.
Key initiatives on income include making resource management and reporting more effective and transparent by:
a) Raising funds as early as possible in the budget cycle.
b) Increasing unearmarked funding commitments.
c) Making payments more predictable.
d) Focusing on accountability and results.
The overall aim is to ensure that timely and flexible funding is available to cover OCHA’s budgeted requirements, and to ensure that the results of OCHA’s work at the field level are communicated to donors and other interested Member States.