Deployment:

Authority Issues Affect Joint System Development

NSIAD-86-155: Published: Jul 23, 1986. Publicly Released: Jul 23, 1986.

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GAO reviewed the Department of Defense's (DOD) Joint Deployment System (JDS) to: (1) determine whether the Joint Deployment Agency (JDA) had adequately identified the needs and requirements for an effective deployment coordination system; and (2) evaluate progress in implementing the system.

GAO determined that JDS: (1) has not achieved the capability to allow commanders to quickly develop and select feasible courses of action for deploying troops to a conflict area in a sudden crisis for which no contingency plan exists; and (2) cannot be completed until DOD resolves disagreements on the information to be provided to and by the system, and makes other improvements. GAO believes that increased Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) involvement, including specific guidance and direction, is now critical, because the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) lack authority to: (1) resolve deployment disagreements; and (2) require actions which support JDS development. GAO also believes that guidance and direction is needed to ensure that the capabilities JDS needs are completed in a timely manner.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: OSD directed USTRANSCOM to develop a master plan by July 1, 1988, for deployment-related systems, in coordination with WIS/JPMO. In light of the review of WIS, which requires firm milestones prior to hardware procurement, follow-up will be achieved through that vehicle.

    Recommendation: To ensure that the disagreements between community members on information which a deployment system, such as JDS, should provide and system interfaces are resolved at the earliest possible time, the Secretary of Defense should require the ultimate users, JCS and the supported commanders, to establish firm milestones for agreement on the interfaces needed for the system.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Authority issues should be resolved with the establishment of USTRANSCOM by OSD on April 18, 1987. JDA efforts have been transferred to this new unified command.

    Recommendation: To ensure that the disagreements between community members on information which a deployment system, such as JDS, should provide and system interfaces are resolved at the earliest possible time, the Secretary of Defense should require JCS and JDA to report to OSD at the earliest reasonable time any disagreements or lack of cooperation from community members which could affect JDA capability to meet the milestones established.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: USTRANSCOM will submit a draft master plan by July 1, 1988. While OSD follow-up has closed this case, it does plan a follow-up audit to verify progress after July 1988. Additionally, GAO follow-up will be achieved through the report on the WIS program.

    Recommendation: To ensure that the disagreements between community members on information which a deployment system, such as JDS, should provide and system interfaces are resolved at the earliest possible time, the Secretary of Defense should provide for followup actions to ensure appropriate resolution of the issue.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

 

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