An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Photo of open ocean

Search News

Efficiency Maximizers: SSP Receives 2023 Navy Financial Management Awards

07 June 2024

From Shelby Thompson

PHOENIX – Members of Strategic Systems Programs (SSP) were presented with several 2023 Department of Navy Financial Management Awards at the American Society of Military Comptrollers Professional Development Institute on 29 May recognizing the “high caliber of creative excellence of the Navy’s workforce.”

Awardees were recognized for their efforts to maximize efficiency across the Financial Management (FM) team while also prioritizing workforce development and retention. Shellon Phillips, SSP Business and Financial Management Section Head, was selected for individual achievement in Leveraging Data Analytics, Echelon II or above. Katherine Cooksey, SSP Acquisitions Systems Lead, was selected for individual achievement in Optimizing Stewardship in the Budget Process, Echelon II or above. Elizabeth McGovern, SSP Financial Management Analyst; Delaney Burlingame, SSP Newcomer On-Boarding Workshop (NOW) Program Manager; Rashmi Singh, and Latysha Porter, were selected for team achievement in Contribution to Enhance Highly Skilled Engaged FM Workforce, Echelon II or above.

“SSP's financial management community continues to set the bar for the Navy,” said Kevin Talley (SES), SSP Comptroller.

“They perform a crucial role in SSP's ability to meet its mission and their individual and collective efforts are felt every day. Their contributions exemplify what these awards represent."

Financial management work ripples across a command. Many of the new process improvements were implemented by SSP’s financial management team to prevent small errors that could lead to big negative impacts for the whole command. McGovern emphasized the financial management team keeps the engines running.

“Nothing can happen without the FM community,” she said. “You can’t pay the workforce, pay the industry partners, or do any of the work without a supportive FM workforce.”

Cooksey worked centered on introducing the Tools & Resources for Budget Optimization (TRBO) to SSP, modernizing the command’s budget process and decreasing the amount of time users allocate towards administrative tasks related to the budgeting process.

The need for efficiency in financial management is a top priority for the Navy. The 2022 Department of Navy Financial Management Strategy elevates “building a culture of innovation to enable workforce efficiency” as one of its objectives, stressing that new skills and innovative problem-solving through automation is necessary step towards empowering the workforce to focus on the mission.

“[TRBO] is allowing users to spend more time on technical work that needs to be done,” said Cooksey. “As a result, SSP is getting more insight more efficiently.”

Nowhere is the need to remain singularly focused on the mission clearer than at SSP, the Navy command that provides cradle-to-grave lifecycle support for the sea-based leg of the nation’s nuclear triad and responsible for approximately 70 percent of the U.S.’s deployed strategic nuclear assets. SSP’s mission is zero-fail – a fact Phillips emphasized highlighting how her work leverages data analytics to improve SSP financial operations and reduce administrative and financial headaches.

“By making sure that we have automated processes and using those processes to make manual, repetitive work more automated, we can reduce errors,” she confirmed.

In addition to increasing efficiency and user-friendliness, SSP saw the need to grow a closer connection between the financial management staff and the mission. To do this, Burlingame worked to create new employee training that specifically tied their work and SSP’s sea based strategic deterrent mission together. This established a direct line of site between conducting cost estimates and getting contracts out the door and the real-world impact that has to the warfighter.

“SSP NOW brings new employees up to speed on the mission and vision of SSP and how the organizations supports the larger Navy and national security as a whole,” Burlingame explained. “When I take the financial management community out [to field activity sites], what I hear most often is that seeing the mission up close and personal makes them feel more connected and passionate about their job.”

McGovern and Burlingame worked together to incorporate SSP NOW into a framework for entry level financial management personnel, prioritizing their development.

“We used the Naval Acquisition development program and the financial management career program through the Department of Navy, and the SSP Development program, to create our Financial Experience and Development Program,” McGovern explained. “We are showing them that this is a great place to work.”

Though the awards highlighted many different areas within financial management, SSP’s team was focused on improving efficiency across the command, as well as improving quality of life for the financial management community through better user-operability and holistic training. Led by these financial management experts, SSP has found that efficiency and passion for the mission often go hand-in-hand.

Google Translation Disclaimer

Guidance-Card-Icon Dept-Exclusive-Card-Icon