GAO: DoD Should Include Acquisition Program Systems Engineering Status in Budget Request

The Government Accountability Office has recommended that Congress require the Defense Department to include the systems engineering status of major acquisition programs in the DoD’s annual budget request.

GAO said Thursday the department can avoid delays and cost overruns through early, detailed systems engineering before programs start.

Auditors assessed nine DoD programs and found that “modest” requirements and early detailed systems engineering led to better outcomes while programs with “challenging” requirements and inadequate systems engineering reported negative results.

GAO noted the F-35 Lightning II program started development with a single-step approach, a complex design, immature technologies and little systems engineering.

The congressional watchdog added that systems engineering plans could support Congress’ decision-making over budget requests for new programs.

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