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Defense Management: Actions Needed to Evaluate the Impact of Efforts to Estimate Costs of Reports and Studies
GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE WASHINGTON DC
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Citing long-term fiscal challenges affecting the federal government, in May 2010, the Secretary of Defense directed the Department of Defense DOD to undertake a departmentwide initiative to assess how the department is staffed, organized, and operated with the goal of reducing excess overhead costs and reinvesting these savings in sustaining DOD s current force structure and modernizing its weapons portfolio.1 1 Remarks as delivered by former Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, Abilene, Kansas, May 8, 2010. The Secretary s initiative targeted both shorter- and longer-term improvements and set specific goals and targets for achieving cost savings and efficiencies. The initiative was organized along four tracks, each of which had a different focus see enc. I. The fourth track focused on specific areas where DOD could take immediate action to reduce inefficiencies and overhead, in particular, to reduce headquarters and support bureaucracies and to instill a culture of cost consciousness and restraint in the department. As part of the fourth track, the Secretary of Defense announced a number of specific initiatives, including actions intended to address the need to reduce or eliminate reporting requirements for DOD reports and studies. For example, in his August 9, 2010, speech announcing the overall efficiency initiative, the Secretary of Defense stated that the department is awash in taskings for reports and studies and directed several specific actions
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