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Analysis of Performance Audit Requirements and Existing Capability within the Department of Defense : Institute for Defense Analyses , November 1, , 2021

November 1, 2021

Institute for Defense Analyses

From the abstract: “This study addresses three complementary oversight and management functions used by DoD: performance audits, inspections, and internal controls. We assess and analyze audit functions and processes in detail for the audit agencies of each military department (MILDEP) to determine whether the functions overlap or duplicate responsibilities. We also analyze hypothetical reductions, consolidation, and elimination of functions across the MILDEP audit agencies. Additionally, we determine the effects of estimated cost savings versus the risk of hypnotical reductions. We found no evidence of duplication in DoD audit processes. In addition, we found that the audit function is one of three management tools (collectively called the tri-functions) that DoD requires for effective oversight and governance of processes and programs. We also found that hypothetical reductions of 50 to 75 percent of the current MILDEP audit agencies are not justified relative to the risks and savings of such reductions. We recommend key areas where management does not use the full potential of the tri-functions that could be enhanced. An initial consideration is establishing or reinvigorating governance boards to shape the tri-functions. We also recommend that DoD and the MILDEPs survey federal agencies to learn best practices and internal audit investment ranges. In addition, the MILDEP audit agencies should assess their workforces to address future capabilities, processes, and systems such as cyber, AI, space, and data analytics. Finally, DoD should continue to emphasize and invest in the systems that provide continuous monitoring of processes and data analytics.”


Dominy, James R., Cuda, Daniel L., Mandelbaum, Jay, Li, Maggie, Wojtecki, Timothy J., Carrington-Fair, Dylan J., Kaye, Mark F., Rose, Susan L.


Institute for Defense Analyses

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