Defense could buy smarter, auditors say

The Defense Department still has a shortage of best practices and controls for business systems acquisition, the Government Accountability Office said late last month.

DOD last year released a set of acquisition guidelines for all its acquisition programs.

But GAO said the revised policies still lack sufficient controls to ensure that Defense agencies abide by the rules. Also, GAO said, in many cases the policies and guidance are inconsistent with industry best practices.

It said the department should follow 18 recognized best practices. Current acquisition policies and guidance fully incorporate eight of the best practices, partially incorporate five and omit the remaining five, the GAO report said.

Without specific requirements to validate use of best practices, there is a risk they will not be followed, and that in turn raises 'risk that system investments will not meet expectations,' GAO said.

DOD is currently expanding its acquisition guidance and expects to be finished by Sept. 30. To read the GAO report, enter 282 in the GCN.com/box.

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