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Highlights

Integrated logistics support (ILS) is the approach to weapons systems development which attempts to link development and production to deployment and operation. GAO examined the M1 tank ILS planning and strategies to: (1) identify options for improving the M1 ILS program, (2) determine whether the implementation of current planning strategies will provide adequate logistics support, and (3) evaluate alternative logistics strategies which could more economically provide effective logistics support. The review was undertaken in response to growing congressional concern over the support costs for weapon systems which have been drastically increasing while recently fielded systems are not achieving required operational readiness.

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Recommendations

Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Defense 1. The Secretary of Defense should support the life-cycle cost reduction programs during future program and budget reviews.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 2. The Secretary of Defense should direct the various DOD components to implement effective life-cycle cost reduction programs.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 3. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to expedite the development of in-house depot level capability for the M1.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 4. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to conform M1 technical manuals to the skill performance aid standards and adequately validate them before fielding.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 5. The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Army to reevaluate the number of training tanks used in the M60 program and projected for the M1 program or reallocate them to operational needs.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 6. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to increase support for the testing and evaluation of M1 test sets and technical manuals to develop them sufficiently to support maintenance activities in the field.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 7. The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Army to determine if M1 training devices can be used more effectively by, for example, using them more than 40 hours a week and/or consolidating them in nearby areas.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 8. The Secretary of Defense should increase support for the M1 reliability and maintainability improvement programs, recognizing the potential to increase operational readiness and decrease future operational support costs through implementation of an effective life-cycle cost reduction program.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 9. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to quantify and evaluate the potential impact, in terms of increased support costs, retrofit costs, reduced operational readiness capability, etc., of producing and fielding the M1 with currently demonstrated levels of reliability, availability, maintainability, and durability.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 10. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to conform M1 test sets and manuals with M1 hardware configurations and develop maximum tank standardization to mitigate the support problems inherent in multiple M1 configurations.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 11. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to implement M1 equipment design and logistics support alternatives, which could support readiness goals and reduce life-cycle costs. Evaluation of alternatives should include wiring harnesses, alternators, and other items discussed in this report.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 12. The Secretary of Defense should quantify (in terms of increased maintenance costs and reduced operational readiness) the effects of fielding the M1 system at its current level of maturity or delaying the program.
Closed - Not Implemented
The M1 has already been fielded; events have overtaken this recommendation.
Department of Defense 13. The Secretary of Defense should provide information to key congressional committees on the M1 logistics burden.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 14. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to provide sufficient program resources, including a prototype vehicle, if needed, and direct increased management attention to the development of technical manuals and test equipment during prototype development in future programs.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 15. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to make a configuration audit to identify incompatibilities between spares and tank production components and ensure that overhaul, retrofit, or other appropriate actions are taken, as needed, to provide conformance.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 16. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to establish additional criteria (at the system and subsystem levels) for evaluating tests that place greater emphasis on operational effectiveness measures and assessment of future support costs. This criteria should include goals and thresholds for logistics burden and operational availability.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 17. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to reevaluate current M1 program plans for increasing production capacity, monthly tank production goals, deployment to Europe, and acquisition of long lead production items and spare parts, considering the current level of design maturity of the tank and its support system, tank production, quality control problems, and other factors.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 18. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to direct that maintenance planning in future development programs be adequately done to minimize design-dictated maintenance, to ensure cost-effective field repair capability, and to provide timely transition from contractor depot support to in-house capability.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 19. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to increase support for the development, testing, and evaluation of M1 maintenance capability at all levels to identify deficiencies in the tank hardware or its support system which will result in increased maintenance cost or decreased operational readiness and initiate corrective action as required.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 20. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to validate test set requirements to ensure that: (1) sufficient numbers of units will be available to support initial deployment without adversely affecting training and testing; and (2) long-term test set requirements are based on realistic factors (maintenance, staff-hours, etc.) and sufficient test sets will be available to provide operational readiness.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 21. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to implement alternative procurement strategies, including phased provisioning, to ensure that future spare and repair parts are procured using the most cost-effective methods, consistent with the level of maturity of the tank and required technical data.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 22. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to update M1 technical documentation to the most recent production tank configuration, making appropriate adjustments in documentation to reflect configuration deviations, and direct that changes to technical documentation, reflecting future tank modifications, are processed promptly.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Defense 23. The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Army to reevaluate M1 requirements for spare and repair parts and proposed delivery schedules based on a realistic assessment of current program data. The reevaluation should determine that sufficient, but not excessive, parts are provisioned in view of such factors as design maturity, the maintenance plan, failure rates of parts, and tank production schedules.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

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