Welcome to the State of California Department of Finance

Core Values

Finance has a strong history of laudably fulfilling its responsibilities. That history of performance has garnered the Department respect from successive Administrations and Legislatures and earned it a reputation as a venerable institution. The foundation of this reputation is a set of core values that guide the actions of the employees who, collectively, are the Department of Finance.


Adherence to Code of Values or Responsibilities We consistently adhere to our duty to execute the mission and responsibilities of Finance while advancing the goals of the Administration.

Credibility (The quality of inspiring belief)

  • Consistently demonstrate your commitment to the Department of Finance, the Administration, and the state.
  • Consistently provide accurate information and sound analyses.
  • Execute audit work with independence and objectivity, both in fact and appearance.
  • Do not cover ignorance with overreaching statements and guesses. If you don’t know the answer to a question, say so and then go find the answer.
  • Deliver what you promise and be careful about promising something you can’t deliver.

Confidentiality (Being faithful to an entrusted confidence or ensuring controlled access to information whose unauthorized disclosure would not be in the best interests of the state)

  • Be alert, sensitive to, and clear about what information you are not at liberty to pass on. For example, policy and funding options under active review, some information pertaining to pending litigation, pending audit findings and other issues sometimes are not to be conveyed outside the Department except by specifically authorized persons or at specifically designated times. Maintaining this confidentiality is vital to the integrity of Finance’s role.
  • Remember that personnel matters often are confidential as well.
  • When asked directly for information that is confidential, say that you are not at liberty to provide the information.
  • Be careful about who might be in earshot when you are discussing confidential information.

Extensive Knowledge and Skill Derived from an Uncommon Amount of Experience and Training We are a reliable source of accurate information and sound fiscal advice.

Knowledge (Familiarity or Understanding of An Issue Acquired Through Experience or Training)

  • Continually develop a level of knowledge that can be drawn upon for technical and policy advice.
  • Know where to get answers if you don’t have them at the ready.
  • Cultivate and maintain contacts that can get you reliable information quickly.
  • Offer to share your expertise with others if it will advance the objectives of the Administration or enhance competency in governmental operations.

Professionalism (Adherence to the Technical and Ethical Standards of a Job)

  • Monitor your biases and approach your work objectively.
  • Distinguish between facts and value judgments and don’t let your values affect your analysis.
  • Analyze information to determine its implications, and evaluate the consequences of pursuing alternative actions based on that analysis.
  • Disclose any assumptions upon which your analysis is based.
  • If a value judgment underpins your conclusion or recommendation (as distinct from your analysis), be clear about that to your audience.

Improvement (Enhancing Value or Excellence)

  • Seek to improve systems, processes, and programs both inside and outside of Finance.
  • Strive to increase the efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability of government.
  • Be solution oriented.

Work Done by Several Associates with Each Doing a Part but All Subordinating Personal Prominence to the Efficiency of the Whole We work together collaboratively and in recognition of the contribution each of us makes to the common purpose of serving Finance, the Administration, and the people of California.

Collaboration (Cooperating toward a common purpose)

  • Provide assistance as necessary to achieve the Administration’s and the Department’s policy goals, even if attaining those goals is not directly your responsibility.
  • Be helpful when other units in Finance or other agencies in the Administration need your assistance to fulfill their responsibilities.
  • Support collaborative efforts, both within and across work groups, which improve the Department’s ability to achieve its goals.

Communication (Conveying knowledge or information to enhance individual and organizational performance)

  • Keep those informed who need to be. This could be your bosses, your staff, your colleagues, or others outside the Department. Ensure that information is shared with those who need it to accomplish Finance’s goals.
  • Stop to think about whom inside or outside Finance needs to know what you do to achieve an end purpose desired by the Department.
  • Ask others if they have the information they need from you.
  • Ask others for the information you need from them.
  • Be clear and timely in providing information, instruction, or direction to others so they can efficiently complete their assignments.
  • Solicit and be willing to give and accept constructive feedback. Listening is half of communicating.
  • Be open-minded and attentive to those who are offering you information.
  • Be concise in writing and speaking.
  • Understand your audience. Know what kind of information your audience needs and how best to present it to facilitate their comprehension of it.

Recognition & Support (Acknowledging and valuing the efforts of others and lending assistance)

  • Honor your responsibility to hold up your end of the team effort.
  • Carry your share of the load and offer assistance to others whose workload may be temporarily overwhelming.
  • Foster a positive atmosphere in the work environment.
  • Recognize that all jobs in the Department are important to the successful execution of Finance’s responsibilities. Each of the people who fill these jobs is valued as a contributor to the organization.
  • Recognize the accomplishments, contributions, and efforts of others both within Finance and in other departments.

Flexibility (A ready capability to adapt to new, different, or changing requirements)

  • Be able to accommodate change in response to shifting priorities, policies, and work assignments.
  • Keep the primary goal in focus and be willing and able to change direction to attain that goal.

Treating Others Courteously and Equally — We recognize the validity of other points of view and treat others with civility.

  • Treat people the way you would want to be treated.
  • Be courteous.
  • Be respectful of others’ points of view and their responsibilities to carry out their duties.
  • Project a positive attitude toward all with whom you have contact as a representative of the Department.
  • Do not take differences of opinion personally.
  • Exercise your authority with a sense of humility. Be respectful in expressing your point of view.
  • Exercise tact and diplomacy.
Problem Solving

The Act of Finding a Workable Means to a Desired End We strive to find practical and effective solutions to achieving desired goals.

  • Within your delegated authority, act to resolve problems.
  • When action is beyond your delegated authority, recommend a solution that is practical and effective.
  • Take initiative to keep problems from developing.
  • Seek to reconcile seemingly incompatible, but mutually desirable objectives.
  • Probe the status quo with the objective of determining whether policies or processes can be improved.
  • Envision new policies, programs or processes that could be implemented to achieve desired goals.