Veterans Affairs IRM

Stronger Role Needed for Chief Information Resources Officer Gao ID: IMTEC-91-51BR July 24, 1991

Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO: (1) reviewed the status of the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) plan for reorganizing its Office of Information Resources Management (IRM); (2) determined the effects of the reorganization on automatic data processing (ADP) acquisition skills; (3) evaluated whether the reorganization was consistent with legal guidelines; and (4) evaluated the involvement of the chief information resources officer (CIRO) in IRM planning, budgeting, and ADP acquisition activities.

GAO found that: (1) the reorganization has left VA with a fragmented IRM planning and budgeting process which does not give CIRO the authority to manage the development of VA-wide information technology and relies on each component to formulate its own IRM plans and budgets; (2) CIRO lacked adequate internal controls over the VA acquisition approval process for information resources, resulting in IRM acquisitions over $50,000 not being submitted for approval and the acquisition of duplicate ADP systems; (3) the reorganization did not provide a solid foundation for IRM, resulting in less responsibilities for the IRM office and a weakened CIRO; (4) since major VA components continue to operate autonomously, its information exchange and system integration deficiencies between the components remained largely unresolved; and (5) since VA reorganization efforts failed to unify IRM, VA actions may not meet the legal guidelines which provide for CIRO management of information resources.


Our recommendations from this work are listed below with a Contact for more information. Status will change from "In process" to "Open," "Closed - implemented," or "Closed - not implemented" based on our follow up work.

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