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Forces - Land | Official Reports | Policy - Procurement | Project Management | Project Methodologies

FCS Procurement Structure Comes Under GAO Scrutiny

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FCS Constellation(click to view full) DID has covered the USA’s $120+ billion Future Combat Systems program before, and recently noted questions regarding its survivability in urban warfare. Now the US Government Accountability Office (GAO) has issued Report #GAO-06-478T (Defense Acquisitions: Business Case and Business Arrangements Key for Future Combat System’s Success). The key paragraph from the abstract reads: “There are a number of compelling aspects of the FCS program, and it is hard to argue with the program’s goals. However, the elements of a sound business case for such an acquisition program – firm requirements, mature technologies, a knowledge-based acquisition strategy, a realistic cost estimate and sufficient funding – are not yet present. FCS began product development prematurely in 2003. Since then, the Army has made several changes to improve its approach for acquiring FCS. Yet, today, the program remains a long way from having the level of knowledge it should have had before starting product development. FCS has all the markers for risks that would be difficult to accept for any single system, much less a complex, multi-system effort. These challenges are even more daunting in the case of FCS not only because there are so many of them […]

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