Serbia Justice Functional Review

Internal Performance Assessment > Financial Management

h. Financial Reporting

  1. The courts' financial reporting is oriented towards demonstrating budget compliance but provides little value to performance management and planning. The judicial system is managed without a comprehensive understanding of the costs of service delivery and their relationship to outputs. Although the scope of primary financial data collected by the courts is comprehensive, much of this data is never digitized, shared or analyzed. The accounting system is ineffective in recording financial commitments, while the accounting categories are not aligned with judicial processes.
  2. Courts, PPOs, HJC, SPC and MOJ produce a range of reports that are not analyzed properly. The reporting lines are not clearly defined and often same data is collected by a number of different institutions. In many cases data collection is not automatic and requires manual input. This puts even more pressure on the financial staff in the judiciary. The Treasury and MOF do not provide feedback on the reports submitted by judicial institutions.
  3. Financial reporting relies on a series of stand-alone computer applications, which require a large amount of staff time and manual effort to process.728 These applications are not able to import or export data and often require a manual entry of the same data even at the same location. Reports are thus prone to errors and not always up to date.
  4. The electronic information of the judicial system is organized in such a way that it keeps financial and non-financial data segregated. There is no interoperability between the accounting system and the various case management systems that would allow keeping track of the costs incurred in the processing of individual cases, even though each case is assigned a unique identifier in each case management system.
  5. The courts are required to provide a breakdown of expenditures by funding source. Therefore, the flexibility that comes with the use of that part of the court budget funded out of court fees comes at the cost of labor-intensive reporting obligations.
  6. Fragmentation that undermines the effectiveness of managing financial information is characteristic of the entire judicial ICT infrastructure. Similarly to other attempts to computerize the management of information, the automation of financial information has not been evolving in accordance with any coherent vision of the ICT architecture and does not adhere to a common data model729 or data dictionary.730 Fragmentation of data management and storage denies the opportunity for all authorized users to access the data they need in a format that suits the purpose of their query. As discussed in the ICT Management Chapter, the judicial information management system does not follow the international standards.731