The GAO published a report today of testimony before the Committee on the Budget, House of Representatives, by Michael J. Sullivan, Director Acquisition and Sourcing Management. His testimony is a series of analysis done by GAO to address the systemic problems at DoD leading to overall poor acquisition outcomes; specifically cost overruns and continued schedule delays of major weapon systems. The report also discusses recent DoD activity to address these problems and what Congress and DOD need to do about them.
Recent changes to the DOD acquisition system could begin to improve weapon program outcomes. However, DOD must take additional actions to reinforce the initiatives in practice including (1) making better decisions about which programs should be pursued or not pursued given existing and expected funding; (2) developing an analytical approach to better prioritize capability needs; (3) requiring new programs to have manageable development cycles; (4) requiring programs to establish knowledge-based cost and schedule estimates; and (5) requiring contractors to perform detailed systems engineering analysis before proceeding to system development.
These issues will continue to be addressed as acquisition reform becomes paramount to fix systemic issues in DoD acquisitions.