The FIAR (Financial Improvement and Audit Readiness) Directorate came out of the DoD Comptroller’s office under former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta. Secretary Hagel has endorsed the plan stating that he will “ensure we make that deadline of 2017 on all audits,” the ultimate goal of the Directorate.
The FIAR Guidance (March 2013) in support of the FIAR Directorate outlines the approach that the department is seeking to leverage. This includes milestones for achieving audit readiness for all mission critical assets. Wave 3 is Mission Critical Asset Existence and Completeness (E&C) Audits, an effort which will allow the Department to prove the existence and completeness of its assets. Budgetary information and mission critical asset information are designated the top priorities in support of FIAR objectives. Without E&C audits these priorities cannot be met, therefore the Guidance calls for concurrent implementation of Waves 1, 2 and 3.
When the Guidance refers to mission critical assets, these are the broad categories of assets that they are focused on:
- Military Equipment – ships, aircraft, combat vehicles, etc.
- Inventory – rations, supplies, spare parts, fuel, etc.
- Operating Materials and Supplies – ammunition, munitions, missiles, etc.
- General Equipment – material handling, training, tooling, testing, etc.
In validating existence of an item, the accountable property system of record (APSR) must match a physical item or set of items. This is a fairly straightforward activity. But validating the completeness of the APSR becomes a huge challenge. The reason for that challenge is that completeness requires that the entire record match the actual pedigree of the physical item.
Validating completeness has challenged property managers and comptrollers for many years and will continue to do so UNTIL the discipline of IUID is incorporated. Adding IUID as the key enabler for E&C of accountable property ensures that assets are captured correctly, one time only, and that the data will remain in the APSR forever more. This will also satisfy the requirement to report legacy items and GFP (and eventually non-serialized assets, after Jan 1, 2014) to the IUID Registry.
When all areas of the US military take the strategic approach of marking all qualifying items with IUID, the resulting influx of IUIDs will dramatically reduce inventory cycles. But even more, there will be huge gains in asset and readiness visibility.
What was impossible before IUID – full asset and readiness visibility – is now within reach. All that is needed is execution.