Depot Maintenance:

Issues in Management and Restructuring to Support a Downsized Military

T-NSIAD-92-23: Published: Mar 26, 1992. Publicly Released: Mar 26, 1992.

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GAO discussed depot maintenance activities and the role of the depot management system in the future restructured and downsized military departments. GAO noted that: (1) in response to a Department of Defense initiative, the Air Force developed a business plan and strategy to reduce depot maintenance costs by $1.1 billion by fiscal year 1995; (2) the Air Force plans to achieve most savings in its depot maintenance operations through a comprehensive public/private competition program for depot maintenance work; (3) the Air Force is planning to transfer intermediate level maintenance currently done at individual operational units to one of the five Air Force depots; and (4) performing intermediate maintenance at depots may require additional funds for more spare parts and transportation and may negatively affect mission capability rates during combat. GAO also noted that opportunities to improve Air Force depot maintenance operations include: (1) expediting the transition of interim contractor support to depots; (2) repairing unserviceable equipment to reduce the procurement of new spares; (3) implementing reliability-centered maintenance; and (4) improving the accounting and the depot maintenance requirements determination procedures. GAO noted that: (1) Navy public/private competition programs have resulted in limited competition, since private shipyards could price bids below expected costs; (2) the Navy and the Army did not always review serviceable items to determine if they could be more economically replaced; and (3) the Army overstated its depot maintenance requirements.

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