t - be COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES *. 5 *~w* WASHINGTON. D.C. 20548 - . /’ - w,/ ..,I. i i / _#.’ / B-132990 lIIIlIIlIlllllIIIlllllllllllllllIIIIIII LM095592 Dear Mr. Chairman: On August 19, 1970, we reported to the Secretary of De- fense the results of our review of the manpower procedures and practices concerning support forces of the 8th U.S. Army in Korea. We raised questions regarding the readiness of units to perform their mission and the adequacy of the manage- ment of manpower needs. We felt that decisions which resulted in changed manpower needs of individual units were controlled by a ceiling for military personnel rather than justification of the need for specific positions. Also we reported a need for Army headquarters and the 8th Army to improve their prac- tices for requesting and assigning additional personnel. We concluded that, with better management, there could be a reduction in the number of military personnel assigned to __-. the 8th Army --_ _.; ,” .b.I-- _- . --_I I and an increase in the readiness of +d.jvid- Many”of-.;c~e-m~~~ers discuss&h in the report to ual units. ,-$m.ra.&...r* *. the Secretary of Defense related to Army-wide problems that we included in earlier reports. In a letter dated October 21, 1970, the Assistant Secre- tary of the Army commented on our findings and told us of ac- tions being taken to strengthen manpower management. A summary of the more important matters on which we believe further action is necessary is enclosed, This summary is also being sent today to the Senate Committee on Armed Services, the Senate Committee on Govern- ment Operations, the Senate Committee on Appropriations, the B-132990 House Committee on Armed Services, and the House Committee on Appropriations. Copies are being sent to the Secretary of De- fense and to the Secretary of the Army. Sincerely yours, Comptroller General of the United States Enclosure The Honorable Chet Holifield, Chairman Committee on Government Operations House of Representatives ENCLOSURE Page 1 SUMMARY OF GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE REVIEW OF MANPOWER PROCEDURES AND PRACTICES CONCERNING SUPPORT FORCES OF THE 8TH U.S. ARMY, KOREA The two principal objectives of our review were to obtain information on (1) the ability of the Department of the Army to meet manpower needs of the 8th Army both in numbers and in skills and (2) the effectiveness with which the 8th Army and its subordinate units were managing the manpower resources provided. We were concerned with two facets of manpower man- agement: (1) the identification of needs and the steps taken to meet those needs, recognizing the limited availability of resources, and (2) the requests for the use of personnel com- pared with the available positions set up for individual com- mands . The review was made during calendar year 1970 at Head- quarters, Department of the Army; Headquarters, U.S. Army, Pacific, Honolulu, Hawaii; Headquarters, 8th U.S. Army, Seoul, Korea; and selected combat support and combat service support units of the 8th Army at various locations within Korea. COMBAT READINESS AND OPERATIONAL EFFICIENCY AFFECTED BY MANPOWER PROBLEMS The effect of the manpower problems noted during our re- view was that certain 8th Army units were not adequately manned either to maintain a desired state of readiness for accomplishing assigned (potential) combat support missions or to efficiently carry out their assigned functions. Some prob- lems were beyond the control of the 8th Army. For example, an Army-wide shortage of officers and senior enlisted men pre- vented the Army from meeting the 8th Army's needs for such personnel. Similarly, the 8th Army had shortages of enlisted men in various occupational areas that could not be filled because of Army-wide shortages and higher priorities for units in Vietnam and elsewhere. ENCLOSURE Page 2 We noted, however, that the Army's basic system for re- questing and assigning personnel was not working well. For example, personnel assigned to duty with the 8th Army were not arriving in Korea when needed. During the 9 months ended April 1970, 55 percent of incoming personnel did not arrive during the month for which they were requisitioned; 30 percent arrived later than the requirement month and 25 percent arrived earlier. Other problems resulted from inadequacies in the 8th Army's own procedures and practices that could have been cor- rected at that level. The adverse effect of these problems was disclosed by the 8th Army's evaluation reports which used Army criteria for measuring the operational status of individual units. Our examination of the personnel readiness condition of 24 8th Army support units in March 1970--about 40 percent of all 8th Army support units--, -howed that 13 of the units were short of their authorized personnel levels. Of the 13 units, seven units were either marginally ready --having major deficiencies severely reducing capability --or not ready and incapable of performing assigned missions. In commenting on the results of the current review, the Assistant Secretary of the Army told us that the low state of personnel readiness of the 8th Army was a matter of continuing concern, He attributed this condition to the total Army shortages of personnel, which would continue to have an im- pact on the 8th Army greater than on other commands with higher mission priorities., The Assistant Secretary told us also that the need to improve the Army's manpower management (authorization, requisitioning, and assignment) procedures was applicable not only to the 8th Army but also to other commands. Specific actions taken to improve manpower man- agement included (1) standardization of procedural guidance to personnel officers for requisitioning personnel, including reporting mechanics and requirement computations, (2) expan- sion of in-country assignment procedures to include consider- ation of relative needs of all 8th Army units, and (3) insti- tution of programs to test the accuracy of personnel data needed within the 8th Army to control the use of military per- sonnel. ENCLOSURX Page 3 MANPOWERSURVEYSINDICATE POTENTIAL FOR REDUCINGPERSONNELNEEDS U.S. Army, Pacific, survey teams conduct on-the-site ap- praisals of military and civilian manpower needs and review the use made of personnel of the 8th Army. Each year the teams are required to consider about 40 percent of the per- sonnel assigned to support units. The surveys usually result in reductions in authorized positions. Concurrent with making these reductions, the 8th Army approves the establishment of new positions in other units. As a result, there has been no decrease in the total number of positions or personnel in the 8th Army. Experience shows that units usually request more positions than can be justified when the units are subjected to a survey. The continuing practice of the 8th Army to approve new needs raises doubt about the effectiveness of the Army' s procedures for controlling manpower ceilings authorized for major com- mands. In commenting on this matter, the Assistant Secretary said that, when manpower surveys result in reduced autho- rized and required strength in units surveyed, the Commander, 8th Army, may distribute the reductions to apply against al- ready approved requirements in other units. We found, how- ever, that the excess positions in units surveyed were not actually applied against requirements already approved for other units. Consequently, although survey team recommen- dations resulted in the elimination of 2,373 positions during fiscal year 1969, the total number of positions authorized for the 8th Army decreased by only 167, Manpower surveys within the 8th Army during fiscal year 1969 showed that units were continuing to request increases which, when subjected to review, were not justified. Units involved recommended an increase of 3,061 positions, whereas the survey team recommendations resulted in a decrease of 2,373 positions. This difference of 5,434 positions between the increase requested by local commanders and the decrease recommended by the team represents about 23 percent of the 23,665 positions involved in the surveys. We believe that all requests for additional positions should be subjected to the criteria, such as Army staffing guides, used by survey teams. ENCLOSURE Page 4 USE OF KOREANSOLDIERS COULDALLOW REDUCTIONIN ASSIGNED UNITED STATES ARMYPERSONNEL The number of Korean soldiers assigned to United States units in the 8th Army is not considered when 8th Army man- power authorizations are established or changed. These soldiers are under the direct command of American commanders of the units to which they are assigned. Korean soldiers are assigned to a variety of positions, including senior noncom- missioned officer positions. Nearly all units in the 8th Army have some Korean sol- diers assigned, with significant numbers being on duq with the 2d and 7th Infantry Divisions. At the time of our review, 8th Army units were authorized to have about 49,000 United States Army personnel and about 11,000 Korean soldiers. The Korean soldiers, unlike Korean civilian nationals, are not included in the basic organization tables of the American units where they are employed. The Army"s system of evaluating unit readiness does not provide for formal recognition of the Korean supplement to United States units. In commenting on this practice, the Assistant Secretary said that the authorized United States manpower of units in Korea was reduced by the number of Korean soldiers in the units; the personnel readiness accounting system did not include the Korean personnel because the Army had no per- sonnel management control over them. The Assistant Secretary said also that the organization tables were used as a basis for requesting United States personnel and equipment and that the readiness status reports served as the basis for United States manpower management. The Assistant Secretary's comments did not, in our opin- ion, adequatel.y recognize the need for accurate and complete information at the Washington level. For example, an impor- tant function of unit organization tables is to ensure that the Army data bank in Washington contains complete and accu- rate information on the Army's force structures. The pri- mary function of unit readiness status reports is to evaluate the capability of the units to perform assigned missions and not to serve as a basis for the management of manpower. Under current reporting procedures, which exclude about ENCLOSURE I Page 5 20 percent of the military manpower of the 8th Army (Korean soldiers), it is apparent that the Army does not have com- plete and accurate information on the force structure or on the readiness of the 8th Army units to which Korean soldiers are assigned. We were told by officials at Headquarters, United States Army, Pacific, that the Korean soldiers were not considered in determining 8th Army's manpower ceilings and therefore did not affect the level of United States troops in Korea. We continue to believe that the basic organization tables of the 8th Army units should include the Korean soldiers as- signed in order to accurately describe unit composition. We believe also that the availability of Korean soldiers should be considered by United States Army, Pacific, in establishing United States personnel ceilings for the 8th Army and in mea- suring unit readiness.
Reduction in the Number of Military Personnel Assigned to the 8th Army and Increase in the Readiness of Individual Units
Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1971-04-12.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)