Air Force Logistics:

Base Maintenance Inventories Can Be Reduced

NSIAD-94-8: Published: Dec 15, 1993. Publicly Released: Dec 15, 1993.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Mark E. Gebicke
(202) 512-5140
contact@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

GAO reviewed the Air Force's management of bench stocks at five bases, focusing on whether alternative stockage policies would provide similar support at lower costs and greater asset visibility.

GAO found that: (1) Department of Defense (DOD) material management regulations require that inventory managers have timely and accurate information on the location, quantity, and status of supplies, but the regulations do not set stockage policies for maintenance activities' inventories, known as bench stocks, and the services' material management policies vary; (2) the Air Force has not effectively managed its low- and high-cost bench stocks; (3) 26 percent of the low-cost bench stock items at the five bases it reviewed were used infrequently, and about 30 percent of the remaining bench stocks were high-cost items; (4) the Air Force may be purchasing unneeded inventory items because inventory managers do not have sufficient bench stock information; (5) Air Force bases and activities have not implemented Air Force policies regarding the storage of obsolete operation-critical items, identified and eliminated unneeded bench stock items, and turned in unneeded items; and (6) using base supply inventories could reduce overall inventory levels, improve asset visibility without sacrificing maintenance timeliness, and be an economical alternative to bench stocks.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: By September 30, 1994, DOD will require that the Air Force review its managerial action and approval process for retaining items in bench stocks that have had no demands in the last year.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Air Force should establish stockage policies to eliminate bench stock authorizations for items that have had no demands in the last year.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Air Force

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: By September 30, 1994, DOD will require that the Air Force establish a price ceiling for adding items to bench stocks without written authorization. DOD stated that the Air Force needs to improve its policies and procedures for justifying high cost bench stocks to support warfighting and readiness goals of tactical units.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Air Force should establish stockage policies to set a unit price ceiling for adding items to bench stocks.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Air Force

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: By September 30, 1994, DOD will require that the Air Force, where feasible, return existing unused and high cost bench stock items to base supply for stockage.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Air Force should establish stockage policies to, where feasible, require the return of existing unused and high-cost bench stock items to base supply.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Air Force

  4. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: By September 30, 1994, DOD will direct the Air Force to require that exceptions to stockage policy be requested in writing.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of the Air Force should require bases to justify any exceptions to the stockage policies in writing.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Department of the Air Force

 

Explore the full database of GAO's Open Recommendations »

Sep 22, 2016

Sep 21, 2016

Sep 19, 2016

Sep 12, 2016

Sep 8, 2016

Sep 7, 2016

Sep 6, 2016

Aug 25, 2016

Looking for more? Browse all our products here