Tax Administration:

Replacement of Service Center Computers Provides Lessons for the Future

GGD-87-109: Published: Sep 23, 1987. Publicly Released: Oct 5, 1987.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) acquisition of its Service Center Replacement System to: (1) assess IRS management of the acquisition and the associated software conversion activities; and (2) identify steps IRS has taken to prevent recurring problems.

GAO found that: (1) although IRS spent a total of about $29 million on computer software to enhance its information processing, the system failed to adequately meet the processing requirements; (2) the system's failure was a result of poor and inefficient programs conducted by IRS without adequate testing and proper quality assurance tools; and (3) although management failed to emphasize quality during the system's conversion, it took steps to correct problems associated with future software projects.

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