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A Workforce Under Pressure

Sept. 22, 2006—The Government Accountability Office pinpoints a serious and growing deficiency within the military acquisition arena. As this chart shows, DOD contract obligations have increased dramatically over the past five years, while the defense acquisition workforce has remained relatively static. GAO chief David Walker told lawmakers earlier this month that the issue is not just numbers of people—although that is part of the problem—it is having the right skills to deal with the plethora of new, and more complex service contracts. Walker emphasized: “You need to have enough people in government that are civil servants who can manage cost, quality, and performance of the contractors. And if you don't, then everybody is going to get in trouble.”

Source: Government Accountability Office briefing slide from testimony by Comtroller General David Walker, Sept. 7, 2006.