GAO's continuing reviews of the acquisition workforce, focusing on the Department of Defense (DOD); the Departments of the Army, Navy, and Air Force; the Departments of Veterans Affairs, Energy, and Health and Human Services; the General Services Administration; and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, indicate that some of the government's largest procurement operations are not run efficiently. GAO found that requirements are not clearly defined, prices and alternatives are not fully considered, or contracts are not adequately overseen. The ongoing technological revolution requires a workforce with new knowledge, skills, and abilities, and the nature of acquisition is changing from routine simple buys toward more complex acquisitions and new business practices. DOD has adopted multidisciplinary and multifunctional definitions of their acquisition workforce, but the civilian agencies have not. DOD and the civilian agencies reviewed have developed specific training requirements for their acquisition workforce and mechanisms to track the training of acquisition personnel. All of the agencies reviewed said they had sufficient funding to provide current required core training for their acquisition workforce, but some expressed concerns about funding training for future requirements and career development, particularly because of budget cuts made recently at the Defense Acquisition University.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Office of Federal Procurement Policy||In an effort to ensure agencies succeed in defining a multifunctional and multidimensional acquisition workforce, the Administrator of the Office of the Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP) should work with all the agencies to determine the appropriateness of further refining the definition of the acquisition workforce and to determine which positions, though not formally included in the acquisition workforce, nonetheless require certain training to ensure their role in the acquisition process is performed efficiently and effectively.|
|Office of Federal Procurement Policy||The Administrator of OFPP should continue to monitor the Acquisition Career Management Information System contract milestones to ensure that the contractor and Federal Acquisition Institute complete and implement the proposed governmentwide system on schedule.|