The Marine Corps Military Pay System:

Too Many Errors and Inefficiencies

FGMSD-80-49: Published: Jun 10, 1980. Publicly Released: Jun 10, 1980.

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As part of an effort to determine whether executive departments and agencies have adequate accounting control over payroll systems, a review was made of the Joint Uniform Military Pay System/Manpower Management System. The system is the combination of the former Marine Corps Joint Uniform Military Pay System and the Manpower Management System. The primary purposes of the automated system were to provide: adequate service to members; the maximum practicable uniformity between the services; centralized and computerized pay account maintenance; and optimum support of planning, programming, and budgeting systems.

The Marine Corps spent millions of dollars in developing, implementing, and operating the system. However, records of these costs were not kept and procedures for measuring system effectiveness were never established. Therefore, Marine Corps and Defense management do not know how much has been spent, what economic benefits have been gained, or to what extent system goals and objectives have been met. Since the System is not reliable enough to centrally compute pay accurately, extensive and inefficient manual procedures are followed to verify the accuracy of pay. As a result, manual procedures, rather than the automated system, constitute the real pay system. There are basic system weaknesses on the part of management which need to be corrected.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Commandant of the Marine Corps to identify, document, and correct software deficiencies.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Commandant of the Marine Corps to establish measurable goals and objectives for improving timeliness and accuracy of the system.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Commandant of the Marine Corps to establish a realistic timetable for eliminating the redundant and inefficient manual procedures.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  4. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Commandant of the Marine Corps to require that internal auditors periodically report to top management on the progress being made toward meeting system goals and objectives.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  5. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secrtary of Defense should direct the Commandant of the Marine Corps to identify, through improvement of reporting procedures, those organizations which submit untimely and erroneous pay data and take corrective action.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  6. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Commandant of the Marine Corps to establish a task force to determine how best to improve staffing of the system's computer processing activities, system documentation, programming language and logic, and testing for and correction of computer errors.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  7. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Commandant of the Marine Corps to direct that the problems in the existing pay system be carefully considered in the design, development, and implementation of the new one.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  8. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) to require compliance with this guidance.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  9. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the commandant of the Marine Corps to establish a single manager who will be clearly responsible for the system's performance.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  10. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) to monitor the progress of the Marine Corps in complying with Department memorandums, directives, and instructions calling for development and implementation of a reliable central pay system, goals and objectives expressed in measurable terms, and an analysis of costs versus benefits of system development.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

 

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