DOD Business Systems Modernization: Navy ERP Adherence to Best Business Practices Critical to Avoid Past Failures
GAO-05-858 Published: Sep 29, 2005. Publicly Released: Oct 31, 2005.
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The Department of Defense's (DOD) difficulty in implementing business systems that are efficient and effective continues despite the billions of dollars that it invests each year. For a decade now--since 1995--we have designated DOD's business systems modernization as "high-risk." GAO was asked to (1) provide a historical perspective on the planning and costs of the Navy's four Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) pilot projects, and the decision to merge them into one program; (2) determine if the Navy has identified lessons from the pilots, how the lessons are being used, and challenges that remain; and (3) determine if there are additional best business practices that could be used to improve management oversight of the Navy ERP.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Department of Defense||To improve the Navy's and DOD's oversight of the Navy ERP effort, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Navy to require that the Navy ERP Program Management Office develop and implement the quantitative metrics needed to evaluate project performance and risks and use the quantitative metrics to assess progress and compliance with disciplined processes.||
The Navy prepared a Program Metrics Plan and the Navy ERP program began using metrics to track and logically link most of the program activities.
|Department of Defense||To improve the Navy's and DOD's oversight of the Navy ERP effort, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Navy to require that the Navy ERP Program Management Office establish an IV&V function and direct that all IV&V reports be provided to Navy management and to the appropriate DOD investment review board, as well as the project management.||
In comments on our report, the Secretary of Defense agreed with our recommendation and stated that the Direct Program Management Office was establishing an independent verification and validation team within its organization. Subsequently, the Navy awarded a new IV&V contract requiring the contractor to be independent of all Navy ERP activities.
|Department of Defense||Furthermore, given the uncertainty of the DOD business enterprise architecture, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Defense Business Systems Management Committee to institute semiannual reviews of the Navy ERP to ensure that the project continues to follows the disciplined processes and meets its intended costs, schedule, and performance goals. Particular attention should be directed towards system testing, data conversion, and development of the numerous system interfaces with the other Navy and DOD systems.||
In comments on our report, the Secretary of Defense partially agreed with our recommendation and stated that the Defense Business Systems Management Committee (DBSMC) meetings will include transformation briefings from each of the components that contain their overall efforts, initiatives, and systems. The Secretary also stated that the DBSMC is conducting reviews of the DOD enterprise level business programs. However, as of June 2015, no additional information or support was provided, including no point of contact regarding this recommendation.