Government Reform:

GAO's Comments on the National Performance Review

T-GGD-95-154: Published: May 2, 1995. Publicly Released: May 2, 1995.

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GAO discussed the Administration's National Performance Review (NPR) initiative. GAO noted that: (1) NPR made 384 recommendations in September 1993 designed to make the government work more efficiently; (2) although over 90 percent of the NPR recommendations have been acted upon, few have been fully implemented; (3) many of the recommendations did not address many critical management problems and high-risk areas; (4) the long-term success of the reinvention effort depends on federal agencies' cooperation with Congress, agencies' capacities to take on additional responsibilities in response to downsizing, and sustained attention and leadership to guide management improvement efforts over several years; (5) NPR recommendations were organized around such principles as cutting red tape, putting customers first, empowering employees for results, and cutting back to basics, however, they lacked a primary focus; (6) to make the transition to reinvented government, agencies' goals must be clearly stated in outcome-based terms and management structures need to be redesigned; and (7) the second phase of NPR began in December 1994 and is based on agency restructuring, regulatory reinvention, federalism, and further implementation of phase I recommendations.

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