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Posted by on May 28, 2015

Guide to the Green Book

Guide to the Green Book

Green Book“Hey! Let’s talk about how to get those reports out more timely. You need to make some procedural adjustments.”

That’s management talking. That’s management holding someone accountable. That’s management doing what it’s supposed to be doing, according to the Standards for Internal Control in the Federal Government – aka the “Green Book.”

Among the many things managers are responsible for; they “should evaluate performance and hold individuals accountable for their internal control responsibilities.”(Control Environment standard, Principle #5 in the Green Book.)

In the directive statements of the manager they are addressing a subordinate about improving internal controls (procedural adjustments) in order to better meet a goal: timely reporting. Managers, supervisors, and all staff are responsible for ensuring that work procedures and processes are as effective and efficient as they can be.

Yet many managers – perhaps all of us – get too focused on the mission and meeting performance goals. We overlook the importance of our processes and procedures (our controls). We neglect the ongoing maintenance that is required to keep our operations humming…and to keep us out of trouble. You know, trouble like missing a performance goal, being wasteful, or not adhering to a law or regulation.

How do we get and keep that focus on internal control? First, by educating ourselves about the significance of internal control in our day-to-day work, then by consulting the Green Book on the numerous aspects of good management and proven ways to implement excellent policies and procedures. The five internal control standards, the nineteen principles, and the numerous attributes explaining the principles cover everything a manager needs to know. The Green Book…DON’T TRY TO MANAGE WITHOUT IT!

Robert is blogging live from the American Society of Military Comptrollers (ASMC) Professional Development Institute (PDI) 2015 in New Orleans, LA!

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