Chapter 2 Postal Operations

4. Internal Controls

The Internal Control Group (ICG) was established in 2003 to oversee compliance with Postal Service policies and processes and enhance the transparency of financial reporting. Trained internal control analysts partner with management to identify weaknesses in controls through analysis, risk assessment and review, determine the root causes of deficiencies, and make recommendations for improvements. Since the groups inception, Internal Control analysts have conducted reviews in field units and have evaluated internal control effectiveness in financial, revenue and performance areas. They have reported their findings and recommendations for improvements to control processes to field unit managers.

At the end of FY 2006, ICG was preparing to implement structural changes that would enable it to better focus on the review and evaluation of financial controls and its reporting of its findings to managers responsible for the evaluated controls. This restructuring will allow ICG to support ongoing Postal Service efforts to validate the sufficiency and effectiveness of internal controls that impact its financial reporting. ICG will determine the effectiveness of internal controls through assessments of financial systems, processes and, procedures that are intended to maintain accurate data reporting, compliance with Postal Service policies, rules and regulations, and the reliability of reporting of managements reporting of financial results.

5. Capital and Program Evaluation Project Management Web Site

The internal Web site for all Headquarters Decision Analysis Reports (DARs) continues improvments by containing all documents, exhibits, and correspondence related to project development, review, and approval. The Quarterly Investment Highlights Report was added to the site in 2006. This quarterly report tracks the performance of Board-approved projects from the time of approval, through implementation, and up to 18 months after full deployment. Headquarters management now has access to the online version through the elimination of more than 175 hardcopies. This enhancement alone has resulted in savings in printing costs, benefited the organization by controlling access to business-sensitive information, increased ease of use for officers, executives, and program managers, and reduced cycle-time associated with the publication of the report. The Web site improves the development, preparation, and review of investment decision electronic documents, provides a centralized, secure, and easily accessible Web based repository for investment decision documents, and provides a more efficient and streamlined DAR development and tracking process that helps to advance projects and their potential savings.