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DoD Eyes Back-Office Cost Savings, Acquisition Efficiency Ahead of Potential Sequestration

Robert Work
Robert Work

The Defense Department is looking into cutting back on spending for back-office operations to prepare for possible budget cuts if Congress implements sequestration in 2016, Federal News Radio reported March 18.

Jason Miller writes that Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work has led a review of DoD’s broad business systems to potentially reallocate some money for missions and readiness.

“We did a 90-day study and over 1 million folks are dedicated to those six [back-office] business operations and we spend $134 billion a year just to execute them on the management side,” Work, an inductee into Executive Mosaic‘s Wash100 for 2015, told the station.

“We are going into every place and we are looking for productivity improvement.”

According to the report, the review also supplements DoD acquisition chief Frank Kendall‘s Better Buying Power effort, which works to facilitate efficiency in the defense acquisition process.

Frank Kendall
Frank Kendall

“We are defining best value in monetary terms. What we have done traditionally… is to define best value in terms of performance,” said Kendall, who is also an inductee into Executive Mosaic‘s Wash100 for 2015.

He added that the upcoming third version of the Better Buying Power strategy will also address innovation, technical excellence and superiority, integration with the intelligence community and commercial technology adoption.

Miller reports that the Defense Business Board also recommends three approaches in driving five-year savings of $125 billion, particularly for the DoD back office.

The board suggests focusing on support contracts, employee retirements and attrition, and IT modernization to reduce costs and enable DoD to put needed resources toward other areas, the report said.

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