The Department of Defense has directed the services to pursue logistics "reengineering" efforts to reduce logistics support costs. To this end, the Air Force has several efforts under way that apply commercial best practices and have, as a key feature, increased reliance on the private sector for logistics support. It is impossible to determine whether cost-effectiveness estimates for proposed contractor logistics support approaches are being achieved because the Air Force lacks the necessary data. Consequently, the Air Force may be testing and adopting support approaches without enough information to assess whether expected readiness improvements and cost reduction goals are being met. The Air Force's limited experience in repairing the same aircraft and components in both the public and private sectors and the lack of comparable and reliable historical financial data make it difficult to assess the cost-effectiveness of private versus public repair facilities. In addition, concerns raised about the impact of the increased use of contractor logistics support on the management of day-to-day activities have not been fully addressed.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Department of Defense||The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Air Force to enhance accountability over logistics support decisions by (1) developing a requirement to have weapon systems program managers retain logistics support decision documentation, including that for the ongoing pilot programs, and conduct periodic assessments of these decisions to assess their cost effectiveness; (2) using the data from those assessments to develop lessons learned information that can be used to assess existing support strategies and new programs to identify the conditions under which the various support approaches are likely to achieve the most cost-effective results; and (3) use an existing corporate senior-level forum to address issues raised by major commands about expanding the use of contractor logistics support and to formally report on solutions recommended and actions taken to address these issues.|