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Homeland Security Acquisitions: Joint Requirements Council's Initial Approach Is Generally Sound and It Is Developing a Process to Inform Investment Priorities


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In 2003, DHS established a JRC to review and prioritize requirements across the departments components such as the U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. However, due to a lack of senior management involvement, it became inactive. Over a decade later and after a 2008 GAO recommendation that the JRC be reinstated, the Secretary of Homeland Security directed the creation of a new JRC in June 2014. GAO was asked to review the organization and activities of the current JRC. This report addresses, among other things, the extent to which the JRC (1) has a structure and management approach consistent with key practices; and (2) has begun reviewing and validating capability and requirements documents and informing DHS investment priorities. GAO reviewed relevant policies and procedures, examined capability and requirements documents, and assessed the JRCs efforts against GAOs key practices for organizational transformation. GAO also interviewed JRC and senior DHS officials, the OCIO and other DHS headquarters officials, component officials, and officials from a non generalizable sample of 10 program offices that had at least one document reviewed or validated by the JRC or were early in the acquisition life cycle. GAO recommends that the Secretary of Homeland Security direct the JRC to make the OCIO a JRC principal. DHS concurred with the recommendation and expects to implement it by October 31, 2016.



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