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Major Acquisitions: Significant Changes Underway in DOD's Earned Value Management Process

NSIAD-97-108 Published: May 05, 1997. Publicly Released: May 05, 1997.
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GAO provided information on the Department of Defense's (DOD) Earned Value Management process, focusing on the: (1) problems facing the cost/schedule control system (CS2) process; (2) progress DOD has made with reforms; and (3) challenges DOD faces in fostering and managing potentially significant changes.


Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Defense The Secretary of Defense should promulgate the basic needs of the organizations that depend on earned value information in some manner, such as in the implementing guidance for the Earned Value Management Systems (EVMS).
Closed – Implemented
DOD concurred with the recommendation, stating that the Performance Management Advisory Council (PMAC) will make clear in the EVMS implementing guidance the relationships among the organizations and their associated data requirements. DOD has included language about balancing the needs of all users in both its Earned Value Management Implementation Guide (EVMIG) and the PMAC charter. DOD has taken other steps to advance EVMS concepts: it has published an abbreviated EVMS Guidebook, an EVMS Risk Matrix tool, and an EVMS Maturity Model to assist users in applying sound EVMS principles. DCMA, the executive agent, has also established a center of excellence for EVMS and developed a web site as a resource for policy updates, user questions, and ongoing activities in the community.
Department of Defense The Secretary of Defense should take steps to ensure that the "wants" of one organization do not encroach upon the basic needs of other organizations that depend on earned value information as the management of the CS2 process transitions to DCMC and as DCMC makes decisions on reforms in the future.
Closed – Implemented
Through its Executive Steering Group, DOD has put the mechanism in place to satisfy this recommendation for top-level guidance. In addition, the Performance Management Advisory Council (PMAC)is responsible for managing day-to-day EVMS issues, including balancing the data needs of various users.

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