GAO reviewed the General Services Administration's (GSA): (1) efforts in control fraud, waste, and mismanagement; (2) implementation and oversight of internal controls; (3) resolution of audit findings and recommendations; (4) Federal Managers' Financial Integrity Act (FMFIA) implementation and reporting; (5) GSA functions and activities that pose the greatest risk of losses and inefficiencies.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|General Services Administration||1. To enable GSA to more fully protect its operations from fraud, waste, and mismanagement, the Administrator of General Services should make this goal a higher, more clearly stated agencywide priority and adopt and institutionalize a more aggressive, proactive agencywide policy and approach that (1) complements Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and other audits, investigations, and oversight; (2) holds GSA services, regions, and program offices and managers fully accountable for more effective implementation of existing internal controls; and (3) focuses more on the expected outcomes and measurable results of control structures and processes.|
|General Services Administration||2. As a minimum, the more proactive approach should include better utilization of OIG and other available audits, investigations, and studies as management tools to more effectively target and resolve systemic operational problems and potential employee ethics and integrity issues, improve agency operations, and more effectively combat known, documented problems.|
|General Services Administration||3. As a minimum, the more proactive approach should include reintensified efforts to improve the quantity and quality of the automated information systems data GSA needs to more effectively manage and oversee its various activities and programs and prevent and detect material losses, inefficiencies, and other irregularities.|
|General Services Administration||4. As a minimum, the more proactive approach should include improvements in the audit followup and resolution process to hold GSA services, regions, and program offices more accountable for ensuring that audit report findings are fully corrected and audit report recommendations are effectively implemented.|
|General Services Administration||5. As a minimum, the more proactive approach should include more assurance that GSA FMFIA reports disclose all material internal control weaknesses, specify what GSA is doing and anything the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and Congress could do to help address and correct them, and properly characterize the status of previously reported weaknesses.|
|General Services Administration||6. The Administrator of General Services should ensure that improved GSA internal control efforts specifically and effectively cover the eight high-risk functions and activities highlighted. For the aspects of these functions and activities that are beyond direct GSA operational control, the Administrator should explore with OMB and Congress actions the government could take to eliminate, or at least reduce, the inefficiencies now associated with them. In this regard, the Administrator may wish to consider disclosing these inefficiencies in GSA FMFIA reports.|