Defense Management:

Efforts to Streamline Acquisition Management Structure

NSIAD-91-15: Published: Dec 5, 1990. Publicly Released: Jan 4, 1991.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the military services' efforts to streamline acquisition management structures as called for in the Secretary of Defense's July 1989 Defense Management Report (DMR).

GAO found that: (1) the services' newly established service acquisition executive (SAE) positions conformed with DMR requirements; (2) each service revised its program executive officer (PEO) positions to conform with all of the recommendations except the collective management of all major acquisition programs; (3) the position revisions gave PEO more control over their permanently assigned staff and support staff; (4) DMR required program managers to report directly to their respective PEO or SAE on matters relating to program cost, schedule, and performance; (5) three-tier program managers gained more authority and control over their acquisition programs; (6) the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition issued policy to decrease the number of briefings required at the Office of the Secretary of Defense and service levels; (7) materiel and systems commands provided logistical and service support to the three-tier structure and managed all acquisition programs not assigned to the three-tier chain; (8) the Department of Defense has not issued guidance implementing DMR changes; (9) while some services have issued guidelines concerning three-tier acquisition officials' responsibilities, they have not updated their policies to reflect DMR changes; and (10) it was too early to determine if the revised three-tier initiative would actually achieve the desired goals.

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