Recently, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report, titled Department of Energy: Better Information Needed to Determine If Nonmajor Projects Meet Performance Targets GAO-13-129 (Dec. 19, 2012). The details of the 60-page report, available here, are discussed below:
Why GAO Did This Study
As of February 2011, EM and NNSA remained on GAO's high-risk list for contracting and project management. These two offices manage numerous construction and cleanup projects that each cost less than $750 million and are called nonmajor projects. DOE requires its program offices to establish performance targets for the expected scope, cost, and completion date of each project before starting construction or cleanup. GAO has encouraged federal agencies to use strategic workforce planning to help them meet present and future mission requirements. Two key elements of workforce planning are to identify mission-critical occupations and skills and any current and future shortfalls in these areas. GAO was asked to examine the (1) extent to which EM and NNSA nonmajor projects have met their scope, cost, and completion date targets, (2) factors affecting EM's and NNSA's management of nonmajor projects, and (3) extent to which EM's workforce plans identify mission-critical occupations and skills and any current and future shortfalls in these areas. GAO reviewed DOE documents and project data, examined EM workforce plans, toured selected DOE facilities, and interviewed DOE officials.
What GAO Recommends
GAO recommends that EM and NNSA clearly define, document, and track the scope, cost, and completion date targets for each of their nonmajor projects and that EM clearly identify critical occupations and skills in its workforce plans. EM and NNSA agreed with GAO’s recommendations.
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