Accession Number:

ADA136406

Title:

Joint Major System Acquisition by the Military Services: An Elusive Strategy

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WASHINGTON DC NATIONAL SECURITY AND INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS DIV

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1983-12-23

Pagination or Media Count:

61.0

Abstract:

An ideal joint major system acquisition program is two or more military services getting together, early on, to agree on the military capability needed, collaborating through development, and procuring versions that are substantially alike. The intent is to save money through multiservice development, procurement, logistics, and support while not impairing military effectiveness. The idea is attractive, but full-scale joint acquisition programs have been very difficult to launch and carry out. Compatibility of the joint system with each services needs and timing of the merger are critical factors. This review concentrated on the joint acquisition of major systems military aircraft, ships, missiles, electronic gear, vehicles, and other high cost equipment. Designated as major by the Secretary of Defense, such systems will usually cost over a billion dollars to procure. In this report, GAO discusses approximately 15 system mergers that split up or are troubled in one way or another. Fundamentally, the services are opposed to joint programs and merging of their requirements. Even though willing to compromise on some needs, the services may still not be able to resolve all requirements stalemates, and there has been no supraservice military umpire to have the final word and make it stick. GAO recommends that specific criteria be developed for use in selecting joint programs. The guidelines suggested above should be helpful in developing criteria.

Subject Categories:

  • Administration and Management
  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE