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Linking Performance and Budgeting

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Governments are quite aware that for opportunities in the federal budget process to be achieved they must link performance and budgeting. This is because they are the mutable and intricate realities and they are striving to keep in place. Public budgeting is a main area in specific that authorities are offering attention to in need of responding to a variable world. To achieve this, authorities are attempting to offer complete and reliable information to policy-makers and budgeters alike in order for substantive budget adoptions can be achieved. Governments currently are particularly struggling to ascertain how good programs and public organizations are doing in offering products and services to their citizenry. The purpose of this paper is to examine the differences between performance-enhanced budgeting and a “traditional” budget process, and the ways in which a budget based on performance information is beneficial to government and the citizenry. Another aspect is how performance information can be utilized in each of the four stages of the federal budget process and the three main findings of the study, and their relevance to improving the federal budget process.

According to Berry (1994), the traditional budgeting denotes a list of entire planned revenues and expenses. It concentrates on what the executives tend to use rather than on what supplies they require. It nosedives to identify incoming workloads, cost drivers and wastes. It does not care for continuous enhancement and seems to have buy-in and lack of ownership. Critics also highlights that it consumes much time to achieve benefits. Thus, traditional budgeting practices do not appear to be linked to the entire organizational plan. Another main fault is that it assumes that the current year's expenditure echelon is justifiable, though it might not be the case since it might be low or high. While in performance-enhanced budgeting, it is always assumed that the expenditures are always focused on zero. “It objects in achieving an optimal distribution of resources which incremental and other budgeting schemes cannot attain” (Berry, 1994).  Zero based budgeting offers an efficient distribution of resources, as it focused on the benefits and needs. It also categorizes and removes obsolete operations, wastage, increases staff motivation, coordination and communication within the organization, perceives inflated subjects and ambitious managers to research cost effective means to upgrade operations. However, despite entire benefits of it, there exist some drawbacks and criticisms against it, like it may clue to micro management, it comprises a huge quantity of money and it might clue to material shifts in the usage of resources (Melkers, & Katherine, 1998).

The all-inclusive framework section concerning how performance information can be utilized in each of the four stages of the federal budget process permits a greater robust look at the performance-informed budgeting by allowing an investigation of reforms at all stages of the budget procedure. This section focuses on each of the four stages in more details, attempting to epithelium out the particular issues intricating with both use and availability, and drawing preliminary conclusions regarding the contemporary state of performance and budget integration at every stage. The four stages include budget preparation, budget approval, budget execution and audit and evaluation. The budget preparation level of the budget procedure is divided into two stages: the development of requests from agencies to OMB and to the analysis of requests by OMB. Performance knowledge can be utilized during these portions of processes, either to maximize the impact of subsidy on the performance or to justify budget requests as it moves onward to OMB or from the Congress president. For budget approval, the president’s budget is transferred to the Congress and approval stage starts. It is widely the Congress province as it approves legislation that impacts both spending and taxes. Budget execution refers to the important potential establishment of performance information in every preceding stage of budget processes. Finally, in audit and evaluation, performance information is used in essential means. “During this stage federal platforms are reread to examine compliance with regulation, program performance and agreement practices.” (Melkers, & Katherine, 1998). Hypothetically, the outcomes of the evaluation and audit stage must feed into formulations of the budget in some consequent fiscal years (Bhattacharyya, 1972).  

Finally, Dusenbury (2000) highlights that  the first finding was that the courtesy of federal governments to the supply of performance, cost information and strategic planning increases considerably in a short period since the enactment of the Results Act and government performance. In addition, federal governments have not been in a good position to create its budget decisions informed by considerations of performance. “As well, the Congress can denote to the capability of federal governments to involve in informed performance budgeting, though progress is not completely reliant on congressional actions.” (Dusenbury, (2000).

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