Navy Manpower:

Squadron Manpower Program Needs Improvement

NSIAD-87-101: Published: May 19, 1987. Publicly Released: May 26, 1987.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the Navy Squadron Manpower Document (SQMD) program to determine whether the Navy based its manpower requirements on sound and rigorous processes.

GAO found that the Navy: (1) has not established staffing standards on work loads for all ground officers and about 20 percent of ground enlisted personnel; (2) did not document the initial standards development for ground enlisted personnel, or require that revised standards be based on efficiency reviews; (3) does not independently verify, consistently calculate, or completely document work loads; (4) uses allowances for nonproductive time that are not based on supportable evidence; and (5) has neither updated nor adequately supported the work-week standard it uses to determine SQMD requirements. GAO noted that limited program support affects the SQMD program in the form of insufficient travel funds, key position vacancies, high staff turnover, and inexperienced program personnel.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The SQMD computer model has been revised to apply indirect maintenance on a department-wide basis. The compounding of allowances has been eliminated.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should direct that the SQMD computer model be revised to: (1) allow certain squadron indirect maintenance work load, including facilities maintenance and tasking, to be allocated at least on a departmentwide basis, where feasible; and (2) eliminate the compounding effect of work-load allowances.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: A triannual review of all standards, guidelines, and allowances has been implemented.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should direct that staffing standards and guidelines, work-load allowances, and work-week time factors be validated periodically, in accordance with Department of Defense guidance.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Production delay allowance was discontinued at the end of fiscal year (FY) 1987. The facilities management (FM) study was completed in August 1988 and resulted in a 5-percent reduction in the average combined FM allowance. New time allowances have been authorized for use in FY 1990 and beyond.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should direct that studies be conducted to determine the appropriate time allowances to be added to measured work load.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  4. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The Navy did not concur that work-load measurement techniques should be applied to preventive maintenance tasks because the Naval Air Systems Command does this.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should direct that the SQMD standards application process be improved to ensure the accuracy of maintenance work load by actions such as: (1) using acceptable work-measurement techniques to establish anticipated time for performing planned aircraft maintenance tasks; and (2) requiring an independent, periodic review of maintenance documentation, at the squadron level, including validation of historical maintenance data by analyzing other materials related to work load.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  5. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The Chief of Naval Operations directed that all such positions be identified and documentation be developed. The Ground Officer Staffing Guide was implemented in late 1987.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should direct that staffing guidelines be developed for those officer and enlisted positions where staffing standards are seen as impractical. Such guidelines should include the process for establishing positions, documenting their justification, and periodically reevaluating the need for them.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  6. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: A ground officer staffing standard has been developed and has been incorporated into the manpower determination process.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should direct that staffing standards be developed for as many position requirements as practical, both officer and enlisted.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  7. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Efficiency reviews will be conducted as functional areas come up for standards development. Guidance on this was incorporated in the new SQMD procedures manual.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should direct that efficiency reviews be performed before developing or updating staffing standards.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

  8. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The procedures manual has been revised to stress proper documentation. Improved documentation will be maintained as standards are developed.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Navy should require that current, accurate, and complete documentation be maintained to support the: (1) methodology for establishing squadron manpower requirements; (2) staffing standards, work-load allowances, and work-week time factors; (3) squadron work-load data used in calculating manpower requirements; and (4) assumptions of the SQMD computer model.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Navy

 

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