Magazine article Public Finance

Keegan's Priority Is Good Financial Management for Whitehall

Magazine article Public Finance

Keegan's Priority Is Good Financial Management for Whitehall

Article excerpt

Financial effectiveness rather than efficiency has to be the government's top priority, the head of the Government Accountancy Service said this week.

Mary Keegan told CIPFA's annual central government conference on October 12 that her main objective was to make financial management across Whitehall more effective, rather than more efficient. 'Efficiency comes from better IT and, in the medium term, from shared services,' she said.

Keegan added that she didn't expect total finance costs to go down in the medium term. 'But transactional costs should reduce as we get better at doing things,' she said.

Keegan heads the programme to transform the quality of financial management throughout central government. By December 2006, every department board is to include a finance director, while generalist civil servants will be required to demonstrate financial competency. …

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