A Cybernetic Analysis of the Application of MIL-STD-1567A, Work Measurement, to Weapon Systems Acquisition Management
AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH SCHOOL OF SYSTEMS AND LOGISTICS
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This thesis examined the role of MIL-STD-1567A, Work measurement, from the theoretical perspective of Stafford Beers viable system Model VSM and Eliyahu M. Goldratts Theory of Constraints. The research method involved a detailed literature review of Work Measurement, managerial cybernetics, and the Theory of Constraints TOC as the basis for a cybernetic analysis of MIL-STD- 1567A according to Beers methodology for diagnosis. In accordance with the principles of Beers VSM and Goldratts TOC, the requirements of MIL-STD-1567A were found to constrain the autonomy of the defense contractor beyond that required for systemic cohesion in the acquisition process. Other problems noted with Work Measurement included its paradigmic disposition toward suboptimization and focus on cost as the primary measure of performance, contrary to present Total Quality Management TQM, TOC, and VSM precepts. Also, Work Measurements algorithmic approach to management control, combined with the failure of the DOD to establish a viable defense market, was found to preclude the defense contractor from deriving criteria for viability. A cybernetic control mechanism, in place of orthodox methods like Work Measurement, was developed and recommended for further study.
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