Friday, November 5, 2010

Report Issued on Results of DCAA Management Harassment

The DoD Inspector Generals office issued its long awaited report on the results of its review of hotline allegations that DCAA management in the Western Region used various means to harass one of its employees. This situation was highlighted during 2008 and 2009 Congressional hearings and was a factor in some high-level Agency turn-over, including the Director of the Agency.

Among the IG substantiated allegations was the overarching allegation that management impeded the auditor's ability to comply with Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS) by imposing unreasonable time constraints and excessive emphasis on metrics. In doing so, management hindered the auditor's ability to perform a quality audit. According to the report, DCAA management overemphasized metrics and imposed unreasonable time constraints while ignoring audit quality.

In response to this and the surrounding firestorm, DCAA eliminated 18 productivity measures and adopted performance measures that emphasized quality and adherence to GAGAS. From a Government contractor perspective, this could be a good thing, or not. Auditors are obviously taking a lot more time to complete their audits. They now take seemingly as long as they want on an audit and if management questions their progress or judgment, they just claim they're complying with GAGAS and management should not be impeding their ability to do so by questioning their judgment. So for contractors under audit, expect the auditors to stick around longer and perform more in depth reviews than previously. On the other hand, audit resources are finite. By taking extra time on assignments, something else is not getting done. One thing that was not getting done was pricing (reviewing contractor price proposals). DoD took care of that one last week by yanking the responsibility to audit cost-reimbursable proposals under $100 million away from DCAA.

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