By Jeff Carosone, Partner Business Executive, Department of Finance
As we turn the page on a very challenging 2020 and embark on new opportunities in 2021, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on my time representing the Department of Finance on the FI$Cal project. Approximately 4½ years ago, I joined the project as the Department of Finance Business Team lead. Since then, the FI$Cal project has made great strides and improvements and bettered the user experience. For example, the incremental data refresh, which we deployed about two years ago, enabled users to run specified Hyperion reports in FI$Cal that reflected real-time data. Previously, users had to wait until the top of every even hour to run those reports to see updated budgetary data that they had just entered in the system. This enhancement resulted in significant efficiencies for departmental staff and Department of Finance budget staff.
When I became the Department of Finance partner business executive about two years ago, my responsibilities grew from overseeing budget-related aspects of FI$Cal to also overseeing the development and implementation of various accounting functionality within FI$Cal on behalf of Finance. In those two years, the FI$Cal project has delivered several enhancements designed to improve the accuracy and efficiency of the year-end close process for departments such as clearing pending cash, minimizing GL/KK mismatches, as well as enhanced reports, queries and utilization of Power BI. In addition, Department of Finance staff, along with staff of the other partners and the Department of FISCal itself, have been working tirelessly, including weekend support, to resolve departments’ tickets and issues to help expedite year-end financial reporting.
The Department of Finance recently released the 2021-22 Governor’s Budget, which was again partially developed using numbers generated out of FI$Cal. In July, we plan to publish the enacted budget, which, as in the past several years, will contain the same level of detail as the Governor’s Budget, providing increased transparency. Our detailed budget information can be found at: http://ebudget.ca.gov/
In this new year, we will strive to continue to improve the user experience in all aspects of FI$Cal and provide additional tools, enhancements and resources. We are committed to making FI$Cal the best system it can be and maximizing its functionality to the fullest. I want to thank all of you for continuing to partner and collaborate with us in this journey to accomplish that goal. Please have a safe, happy and healthy 2021.