Defense Acquisition Workforce: The Air Force Needs to Evaluate Changes in Funding for Civilians Engaged in Space Acquisition

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A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Air Force did not evaluate its pilot program that moved funding for Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) acquisition civilian personnel from its 1-year Operation and Maintenance (O&M) appropriation to its 2-year Research, Development, Test, and Evaluation (RDT&E) appropriation. In addition, the Air Force is considering using this pilot program to inform funding changes for other sections of its civilian workforce. GAO's prior work has identified the following practices for implementing and evaluating pilot programs: (1) develop objectives that link to the goals of the ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. July 8, 2013.

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Description

A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Air Force did not evaluate its pilot program that moved funding for Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) acquisition civilian personnel from its 1-year Operation and Maintenance (O&M) appropriation to its 2-year Research, Development, Test, and Evaluation (RDT&E) appropriation. In addition, the Air Force is considering using this pilot program to inform funding changes for other sections of its civilian workforce. GAO's prior work has identified the following practices for implementing and evaluating pilot programs: (1) develop objectives that link to the goals of the pilot; (2) develop processes for monitoring the pilot; (3) develop and implement a data collection and analysis plan for evaluating the pilot; and (4) communicate evaluation results to stakeholders. When implementing the pilot program, the Air Force did not follow these practices, and primarily focused on ensuring that administrative changes were made accurately such as ensuring employees received pay on time. For example, while a variety of potential goals were identified for the pilot program by the Air Force in various documents; they were not clear or consistent. As a result, anecdotal opinions on the advantages or disadvantages of the pilot varied significantly. Air Force acquisition officials stated that the pilot program could protect the funding from general reductions, while conversely, Air Force financial management officials said that the pilot would not necessarily mean that space acquisition personnel would be excluded from general reductions to civilian personnel funding. Further, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) officials stated that they are relying on the Air Force to report to them on the pilot's outcomes, but the Air Force has not completed a data collection plan to evaluate the pilot program and has not developed processes for monitoring the pilot program and communicating evaluation results to stakeholders. Without systematically evaluating the pilot program, the Air Force cannot determine if there is an advantage to expanding the pilot to other sections of the civilian workforce."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • July 8, 2013

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  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Defense Acquisition Workforce: The Air Force Needs to Evaluate Changes in Funding for Civilians Engaged in Space Acquisition, report, July 8, 2013; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc302383/: accessed January 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.