The following audit report has been posted to the NASA Office of
Inspector General web site: Faster, Better, Cheaper: Policy, Strategic
Planning, and Human Resource Alignment (IG-01-009, March 13, 2001)

To access the entire report, please go to:

Synopsis: The NASA Office of Inspector General (OIG) conducted an
of the implementation of Faster, Better, Cheaper (FBC) policies on
acquisition management at NASA. By using FBC to manage
programs/projects, NASA has attempted to change not only the way
project managers think, but also the way they conduct business.
Therefore, we considered FBC a management policy that should be
defined, documented in policy documents, and incorporated into the
strategic planning process. Although NASA has been using the FBC
approach to manage projects since 1992, NASA has neither defined FBC
nor implemented policies and guidance for FBC. Without a common
understanding of FBC, NASA cannot effectively communicate its
principles to program/project managers or contractor employees. In
addition, the Agency has not incorporated sufficient FBC goals,
objectives, and metrics into NASA’s strategic management process.
Therefore, missions completed using FBC are outside the strategic
management and planning process, and progress toward achieving FBC
cannot be measured or reported. Finally, NASA has not adequately
aligned its human resources with its strategic goals. As a result, the
Agency cannot determine the appropriate number of staff and
competencies needed to effectively carry out strategic goals and
objectives for its programs.

Management’s Response: Management partially concurred with developing
policies and guidance to define FBC and describe its implementation.
Management stated that FBC should not be a separate subset of
management policies. However, management plans to include the
definition of FBC and appropriate changes resulting from the NASA
Integrated Action Team (NIAT) (See End Note) report in NASA policy
documents, as appropriate.

NASA also only partially concurred with the recommendations to align
staffing with strategic goals because management does not view FBC as
the cause for the staffing issues identified. However, NASA plans to
develop a workforce plan for each Center that will link staffing,
funding resources, mission and activities and core competencies. In
addition, the fiscal year 2002 Performance Plan will include a
discussion of Agency human resources. Details on the status of the
recommendations are in the findings sections of the report (pages 15-

End Note: In 1999, after failure of four missions that used the FBC
approach for project management, the NASA Administrator commissioned
several independent reviews to examine FBC and mission failures, search
for root causes, and recommend changes. In March 2000, the NASA
Administrator tasked the NASA Integrated Action Team (NIAT), led by
NASAís Chief Engineer, to define a plan to mitigate the root causes for
the failures that were identified in the reports issued by the
independent review teams. The NIAT effort and our audit effort were
performed concurrently, and resulted in two separate reports.

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