Key Issues > Transforming DOD's Business Operations
defense icon, source: [West Covina, California] Progressive Management, 2008

Transforming DOD's Business Operations

Weaknesses in key business operations within the Department of Defense (DOD) adversely affect DOD's efficiency and effectiveness, and hinder its ability to free up resources for higher priority needs.

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DOD spends billions of dollars each year to sustain key business operations intended to support the warfighter. At a time of growing fiscal constraints, transforming DOD’s business operations will be critical.

Many of DOD's key business operations are high-risk due to their vulnerability to waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement. Longstanding deficiencies have resulted in a lack of adequate accountability, causing DOD to experience cost growth and waste billions of dollars annually.

  • High-risk areas specific to DOD include its approach to business transformation, business systems modernization, support infrastructure management, financial management, supply chain management, weapon system acquisition, and DOD contract management.
  • In addition, DOD shares responsibility for several high-risk areas that are governmentwide in nature, such as managing federal real property management, strategic human capital management, and management of interagency contracting.

Common to all of DOD’s high-risk areas is the need for sustained, senior-level leadership and a more strategic decision-making approach to ensure that programs and investments are based on plans with measurable goals, clear objectives, validated requirements, prioritized resource needs, and performance measures to gauge progress.

Looking for our recommendations? Click on any report to find each associated recommendation and its current implementation status.

Defense Business Transformation:

Improvements Made but Additional Steps Needed to Strengthen Strategic Planning and Assess Progress
GAO-13-267:
Published: Feb 12, 2013. Publicly Released: Feb 12, 2013.

DOD Business Systems Modernization:

Governance Mechanisms for Implementing Management Controls Need to Be Improved
GAO-12-685:
Published: Jun 1, 2012. Publicly Released: Jun 1, 2012.

Defense Inventory:

Actions Underway to Implement Improvement Plan, but Steps Needed to Enhance Efforts
GAO-12-493:
Published: May 3, 2012. Publicly Released: May 3, 2012.

DOD Financial Management:

Challenges in Attaining Audit Readiness and Improving Business Processes and Systems
GAO-12-642T:
Published: Apr 18, 2012. Publicly Released: Apr 18, 2012.

Defense Acquisitions:

Assessments of Selected Weapon Programs
GAO-12-400SP:
Published: Mar 29, 2012. Publicly Released: Mar 29, 2012.

More Reports

Army Workload and Performance System:

Actions Needed to Complete Assessment of Unnecessary Overlap with Logistics Modernization Program
GAO-14-266:
Published: Feb 28, 2014. Publicly Released: Feb 28, 2014.

DOD Business Systems Modernization:

Air Force Business System Schedule and Cost Estimates
GAO-14-152:
Published: Feb 7, 2014. Publicly Released: Mar 10, 2014.

Defense Logistics:

Army Should Track Financial Benefits Realized from its Logistics Modernization Program
GAO-14-51:
Published: Nov 13, 2013. Publicly Released: Nov 13, 2013.

DOD Business Systems Modernization:

Further Actions Needed to Address Challenges and Improve Accountability
GAO-13-557:
Published: May 17, 2013. Publicly Released: May 17, 2013.

Organizational Transformation:

Enterprise Architecture Value Needs to Be Measured and Reported
GAO-12-791:
Published: Sep 26, 2012. Publicly Released: Sep 26, 2012.

Tactical Aircraft:

Comparison of F-22A and Legacy Fighter Modernization Programs
GAO-12-524:
Published: Apr 26, 2012. Publicly Released: Apr 26, 2012.

Organizational Transformation:

Military Departments Can Improve Their Enterprise Architecture Programs
GAO-11-902:
Published: Sep 26, 2011. Publicly Released: Sep 26, 2011.

Department of Defense:

Further Actions Needed to Institutionalize Key Business System Modernization Management Controls
GAO-11-684:
Published: Jun 29, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 29, 2011.

Defense Logistics:

Additional Oversight and Reporting for the Army Logistics Modernization Program Are Needed
GAO-11-139:
Published: Nov 18, 2010. Publicly Released: Nov 18, 2010.

DOD Business Transformation:

Improved Management Oversight of Business System Modernization Efforts Needed
GAO-11-53:
Published: Oct 7, 2010. Publicly Released: Oct 7, 2010.
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  • portrait of Janet St. Laurent
    • Janet St. Laurent
    • Managing Director, Defense Capabilities and Management
    • stlaurentj@gao.gov
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