oversight

Individual Ready Reserve: Army Needs to Make More Effective Use of Limited Training Funds

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1990-02-07.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

      I       - .-.. ..__..._..-...-.   ..-_--. -.- ^___
                                                      -._ .._..._.______.I__.
                                                                        “l__.II,II-.     -~
Il‘P 1rr’ll;l.ry 1!1!)0
                                                           INDIVIDUAL                  READY
                                                           RESERVE
                                                           Army Needs to Make
                                                           More Effective Use of
                                                           Limited Training
                                                           Funds
                                                                                                                         I.
                                                                                                                         .P

                                                                                                                          I

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                                                                                                                         ;I
National Security and
International Affairs Division

H-222994



The IIonorable Beverly 13.Byron
Chairman, Subcommittee on Military Personnel
    and Compensation
Committee on Armed Services
I Iouse of Representatives

Dear Madam Chairman:

This report responds to your request that we examine the Army’s Individual Ready Reserve
training program. The report shows that the Army has assigned Individual Ready Reserve
training a low priority and has not always made the best use of the limited training funds
that were available.

As you requested, we plan no further distribution of this report until 15 days after its issue
date. At that time we will send copies to the Chairmen of the House and Senate Committees
on Armed Services and on Appropriations; the Director, Office of Management and Rudget;
and the Secretaries of Defense and the Army. Copies will also be made available to other
interested parks upon request.

Please contact me at (202) 275-4141 if you or your staff have any questions concerning this
report. GAOstaff members who made major contributions to this report are listed in
appendix II.

Sincerely yours,




Richard Davis
Director, Army Issues
.“.*--l--l--~l-l




    Executive Summary


                     To meet the demands of the nation’s defense, the Army must be able to
 Purpose             swiftly mobilize and deploy combat-ready units. As part of its plan to
                     meet this need, the Army maintains the Individual Ready Reserve, com-
                     posed primarily of soldiers who have previously served in the Army and
                     have some period of service obligation remaining. In the event of mobili-
                     zation, Individual Ready Reserve soldiers will be called up to fill gaps in
                     deploying and stateside units and to replace early combat casualties,

                     Upon mobilization, many Individual Ready Reserve soldiers will be
                     deployed within the first 30 days; consequently, their preparedness is of
                     great importance to national readiness. Unlike members of the Selected
                     Reserve, who train several times every year, Individual Ready Reserve
                     soldiers have no mandatory, regularly scheduled training. In light of the
                     Army’s heavy reliance on the Individual Ready Reserve, the
                     Subcommittee on Military Personnel and Compensation, House Commit-
                     tee on Armed Services, asked GAO to determine whether the Army’s Indi-
                     vidual Ready Reserve training program focuses funds on skills that
                     require refresher training and are most needed in the early days of
                     conflict.


                     At the end of fiscal year 1988, the Individual Ready Reserve numbered
Background           about 293,000 soldiers-approximately       12 percent of the Army’s total
                     manpower available for mobilization, Of these, about 47,000 (16 per-
                     cent) were officers, and the remaining 246,000 (84 percent) were
                     enlisted personnel. By the early 199Os, the size of the Individual Ready
                     Reserve is expected to reach 400,000, due to an increase in the military
                     service obligation period from 6 to 8 years.

                     In time of war, Individual Ready Reserve soldiers report to mobilization
                     stations for assignment to units, In peacetime, the Individual Ready                                  4
                     Reserve is managed by the Army Reserve Personnel Center, a field oper-
                     ating agency of the Office of the Chief of the Army Reserve. In fiscal
                     year 1988, approximately $54 million was spent on the Individual
                     Ready Reserve mobilization training program.’


                     Individual Ready Reserve training has low priority within the Army, as
  Results in Brief   evidenced by the limited funding and small percentage of soldiers
                     trained in recent years. In addition, the Army did not always make the

                     ‘Funding levels mentioned in this report do not include costs associated with the annual screen,
                     which is used to determine the status and availability of Individual Ready Reserve members.



                     Page 2                                  GAO/NSIAD-90-55     The Army’s Individual    Ready Reserves
                              Executive   Summary




                              best use of the limited training funds that were available. GAO'Sfindings
                              were as follows:

                          l The Army’s first training priority was professional development educa-
                            tion for those Individual Ready Reserve soldiers needing it for promo-
                            tion, rather than mobilization readiness training for soldiers needed in
                            the first 30 days of mobilization.
                          . Mobilization training funds were used for non-training purposes and to
                            provide multiple training tours for some Individual Ready Reservists as
                            well as to train soldiers in specialties not required in the early days of
                            mobilization.
                          . The Army lacks information on the Individual Ready Reserve’s
                            refresher training needs and has not adequately defined training
                            priorities.



Principal Findings

NW Individual Ready           The Army is not providing Individual Ready Reserve members refresher
Reserve Members Receive       training consistent with their wartime roles. The readiness of Individual
                              Ready Reserve soldiers is essential because many of them will be
Training                      deployed early and will function interchangeably with active duty
                              forces. In the first 30 days of mobilization, the Army will rely on about
                               115,000 Individual Ready Reserve soldiers to bring forward-deployed,
                              deploying, and stateside support units to wartime strength. However,
                              the majority of these soldiers have received no mobilization training in
                              the last 2 years.

                              There may not be enough time and resources available between mobili-
                              zation and deployment for Individual Ready Reserve soldiers to become
                              proficient in the skills they will need in combat. Therefore, they must
                              maintain these skills through peacetime refresher training. However, in
                              fiscal years 1987 and 1988 the Army provided training to only about
                              18,000 Individual Ready Reserve soldiers needed in the first 30 days of
                              mobilization. Also, the Army has not determined which skills of
                              Individual Ready Reserve members need refresher training.

                              Furthermore, Army officials told GAOthat, in recent years, Individual
                              Ready Reserve training has been the lowest funding priority in the
                              Army Reserve Personnel account because the Army considers training
                              for other reservists and Reserve Officer Training Corps members more


                              Pnge 3                       GAO/NSIAD90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                            Executive   Summary




                            important. In fiscal year 1988, almost $18 million (25 percent) of the
                            $72 million budgeted for mobilization training was reprogrammed.


Training Funds Are Not      Professional development education- not mobilization readiness train-
Focused on Mobilization     ing for Individual Ready Reserve members needed in the first 30 days of
                            mobilization-was      the Army’s first priority for Individual Ready
Readiness Training          Reserve training, because it is required for promotion and because of the
                            “up-or-out” requirement for officers. The Army’s projections of require-
                            ments for filling shortages in deploying and stateside support units indi-
                            cate that almost 70 percent of the Individual Ready Reserve soldiers
                            needed in the early days of conflict will be in the lowest enlisted skill
                            levels. However, nearly 50 percent of the Individual Ready Reserve
                            soldiers who received training in fiscal year 1988 were officers. In addi-
                            tion, of those Individual Ready Reserve soldiers who received training,
                            many were not required for the first 30 days of mobilization.

                            More than $14 million (26 percent) of the funds budgeted for Individual
                            Ready Reserve mobilization training in fiscal year 1988 was spent on
                            non-training activities. These activities include support for marksman-
                            ship competitions and service as liaison officers to the United States
                            Military Academy, West Point.

                            Also, although most Individual Ready Reserve soldiers received no
                            training at all, others were given multiple training tours in the same
                            year. In fiscal year 1988, 16 percent of all officer and 11 percent of all
                            enlisted training tours were given to Individual Ready Reserve soldiers
                            who had already had one tour that year. These figures do not include
                            programs that Army Reserve Personnel Center officials identified as
                            requiring multiple tours.


The Army Lacks              In its defense guidance for fiscal years 1986 to 1990, the Department of
Inf’ormation on Refresher   Defense directed the services to (1) determine Individual Ready Reserve
                            skill decay and the most appropriate timing of refresher training and
Training Needs and Has      (2) begin refresher training no later than fiscal year 1988. Over the last
Not Adequately Defined      3 fiscal years, the Army has made little progress in making the required
Training Priorities         determinations. Currently, it does not know which skills require
                            refresher training or the required frequency of refresher training. As a
                            result, the Army cannot focus refresher training on those skills most in
            Y
                            need of it.




                            Page 4                        GAO/NSLAD-90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                      Executive   Summary




                      Although in fiscal year 1987 the Army contracted for a study of the
                      task retention and refresher training requirements of the Individual
                      Ready Reserve, that study has experienced serious methodological prob-
                      lems that have made its results highly questionable. Despite these prob-
                      lems, the Army continued to collect data for the study.

                      In addition, although the Army headquarters’ Office of the Deputy Chief
                      of Staff for Operations and Plans developed a model for prioritizing the
                      training of Individual Ready Reserve members needed in the earliest
                      days of mobilization, it is not being used to determine which soldiers to
                      train. Army Reserve Personnel Center officials attribute the failure to
                      use the model to a lack of guidance on how to apply the priorities to
                      training decisions,


                      GAOrecommends that the Secretary of the Army make more effective
Recommendations       use of mobilization training funds by taking the following actions:

                  l   establishing overall guidance and controls directed towards ensuring
                      that available training funds are focused on mobilization requirements
                      with special emphasis on Individual Ready Reserve members needed in
                      the first 30 days of mobilization and
                  l   determining the content and frequency of required refresher training.


                      The Department of Defense generally agreed with GAO'Saudit findings
Agency Comments       and recommendations (see app. I). In a draft of this report, GAOpro-
                      posed that, on the basis of the level of funding made available to train
                      Individual Ready Reserve members in recent years and the limited
                      number of soldiers trained for mobilization, the Secretary of the Army
                      (1) assess the risk associated with depending on the Individual Ready
                      Reserve to fill early mobilization requirements and (2) decide whether
                      the benefits realized from the Individual Ready Reserve training pro-
                      gram warrant its continuation. The Department has decided that the
                      Individual Ready Reserve is essential to meet wartime requirements and
                      recognizes that the management of Individual Ready Reserve training,
                      particularly the management of enlisted refresher training, must be
                      improved. It recently formed a joint task group with a principal objec-
                      tive of improving Individual Ready Reserve management.




                      Page 5                       GAO/NSIAD-90-65   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
Contents


Executive Summary                                                                                                  2

Chapter 1                                                                                                          8
Introduction            Role of IRR in Total Force Policy Is Significant                                       9
                        Objective, Scope, and Methodology                                                     10

Chapter 2                                                                                                     12
IRR Training Does Not   Importance of Training to IRR Preparedness                                            12
                        Few IRR Members Receive Training                                                      13
Focus on Skills That    IRR Training Funds Are Not Focused on Wartime                                         14
Are Most Needed in          Requirements
the Early Days of       The Army Lacks Information on Refresher Training                                      18
                            Needs and Has Not Adequately Defined Training
Conflict                    Priorities
                        Conclusions
                        Recommendations
                        Agency Comments and Our Evaluation

Appendixes              Appendix I: Comments From the Department of Defense                                   24
                        Appendix II: Major Contributors to This Report                                        35

Tables                  Table 2.1: Distribution of Active Duty Tours in Fiscal                                15
                            Year 1988
                        Table 2.2: Numbers of Soldiers to Be Tested in IRR Skill                              19
                            Degradation Study
                        Table 2.3: Number of Soldiers Who Actually Participated                               20
                            in IRR Skill Degradation Study

Figure                  Figure 2.1: Portion of IRR Soldiers Trained in Fiscal Year                            18
                             1988 in Excess of 30-Day Requirements




                        Abbreviations

                        AHPHICEN   Army Reserve Personnel Center
                        DOD        Department of Defense
                        GAO        General Accounting Office
                        IlZIi      Individual Ready Reserve


                        Page 6                        GAO/NSIAD-90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
Page 7        GAO/NSIAD-OO-SS     The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves



                             ,:
         I,         ,I
                         I
Chapter 1

Introduction


               The Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) is the primary source of trained
               individuals upon whom the Army depends to augment active and
               Selected Reserve units in the event of war or national emergency.’ At
               the end of fiscal year 1988, the IRR comprised more than 12 percent of
               the Army’s total manpower available for mobilization. Members of the
               IRII will be used to increase active and Selected Reserve units from
               peacetime to wartime strength, provide replacements for combat casual-
               ties during the early days of conflict, and increase the size of the sup-
               port base in the continental United States. The IRR consists primarily of
               men and women who have completed some active duty and who have
               some remaining period of their statutory military obligations to be
               served in the IRR. Also in the IRR are men and women who have volunta-
               rily remained beyond their statutory obligations.

               As of September 30, 1988, there were approximately 293,000 soldiers in
               the IRK Of these, about 47,000 (16 percent) were officers, and the
               remaining 246,000 (84 percent) were enlisted personnel. By the early
               1990s the size of the IRR is expected to reach 400,000. This is due to an
               increase in the military service obligation period from 6 to 8 years effec-
               tive <June1, 1984.

               In peacetime, the IRR is commanded and managed by the Commanding
               General, Army Reserve Personnel Center (ARPERCEN), a field operating
               agency of the Office of the Chief of the Army Reserve. In time of war,
               IHII soldiers are to report to mobilization stations for assignment to units.

               Following policy guidance from the Army headquarters’ Office of the
               Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans and from the Chief of
               the Army Reserve, ARPERCEN, in conjunction with major Army com-
               mands, is responsible for providing training that ensures that IRR mem-
               bers are qualified in their military specialties and available to meet                                a
               projected mobilization requirements. ARPERCEN officials told us that this
               training includes hands-on training with Army units as well as class-
               room training. Examples of classroom training include specially
               designed refresher training courses and professional development edu-
               cation programs such as the Command and General Staff Officer Course.




               ‘Sclcctcd I&x:rvc mcmbcrs serve in organized units and are paid for drilling on weekends (gcnc%lly
               I wcckcnd each month) and for attending a 2-week period of active duty training each year.



               Page 8                                 GAO/NSIAD90-M       The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                       Chapter 1
                       Introduction




                       In 1988, approximately $54 million was spent on IRR training, although
                       the program was budgeted at about $72 million.’ IRR training is funded
                       by the Army Reserve Personnel mobilization training account. IRR train-
                       ing program costs include costs associated with the actual training of IRR
                       members as well as the costs to support Army Reserve missions,
                       projects, or exercises by IRR members. These costs include all pay,
                       allowances, retired pay accrual expenses, and travel expenses for both
                       officer and enlisted personnel.

                       Although the Army has the authority to require training for up to
                        15 days a year for IRR members whose skills require periodic refresher
                       training and are needed during the first 30 days of mobilization, Army
                       officials told us that this authority is not used. As a result, training in
                       the IRR differs from that of active duty or Selected Reservist training in
                       that training participation is voluntary. However, incentives are offered
                       to IHR soldiers to encourage them to train, They are paid and receive
                       retirement points for their active duty training. All IRR soldiers earn
                        15 points annually for membership in the IRR. They also receive one
                       point for each day of active duty training, one point for each 3-hour
                       correspondence course satisfactorily completed, and one point for each
                       4 hours of drill. A total of 50 points is needed in 1 year to qualify as a
                       service year, and 20 service years are needed for retirement. Retirement
                       points are used in calculating retirement pay, and more points equate to
                       more money.


                       The defense of the United States relies heavily upon the Army’s ability
Role of IRR in Total   to quickly mobilize, deploy, and reinforce combat-ready forces. The
Force Policy Is        manpower ceiling for the active-duty component has led the Army to
Significant            develop a Total Force Policy in order to carry out that defense. Under
                       the Total Force Policy, all available troops, active and reserve, will be
                       used to meet the needs of combat.

                       Since the Total Force Policy was established, the role of the reserve com-
                       ponent has grown as the Army has increased its reliance on reserve
                       forces to perform many missions required in the first stages of conflict.
                       Instead of using reserves as supplements to a standing army, the Total
                       Force Policy requires many reserve units and soldiers to deploy in the
                       same capacity, at the same time, as their active-duty counterparts.


                       ‘Funding lcvcls mentioned in this report do not include costs associated with the annual screen,
                       which is used to determine the status, qualifications, and availability of IRR members.



                       Page 9                                  GAO/NSlAD-90-66     The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                        Chapter 1
                        Introduction




                        In the first 30 days of mobilization, the Army will rely on about
                        115,000 IRR soldiers to bring forward-deployed, deploying, and stateside
                        support units to wartime strength. Furthermore, the Army will use addi-
                        tional IRR soldiers to replace early combat casualties. Accordingly, the
                        ability of the soldiers in the IRR to perform their wartime skills is an
                        integral part of the Army’s war-fighting strategy.


                        In light of the Army’s heavy reliance on the IRR, the Subcommittee on
Objective, Scope, and   Military Personnel and Compensation, House Committee on Armed
Methodology             Services, requested in August 1988 that we determine whether the
                        Army’s IRR training program focuses funds on skills that require
                        refresher training and are most needed in the early days of conflict. To
                        answer this request, we reviewed guidance, regulations, and funding
                        documents on the Army’s IRR training program, interviewed program
                        officials, and obtained data at the following locations:

                        Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Reserve Affairs),
                        Washington, DC., to identify the policies that have been established for
                        training IRR soldiers and how these relate to the IRR mobilization mission;
                        Department of the Army, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for
                        Operations and Plans, Washington, D.C., to determine how the Army’s
                        mobilization requirements are translated into training priorities for IRR
                        soldiers;
                        Office of the Chief, Army Reserve, Washington, D.C., to determine
                        amounts budgeted and expended for IRR training;
                        Headquarters, Training and Doctrine Command, Fort Monroe, Virginia,
                        to determine the type and frequency of training needed for the IRR to
                        meet its mobilization mission;
                        U.S. Army Reserve Personnel Center, St. Louis, Missouri, to determine
                        the nature and extent of IRR training and the processes that have been
                        established to provide training to IRR members;
                        Headquarters, Forces Command, Fort McPherson, Georgia, to determine
                        the importance of the peacetime training of the IRR;
                        Allen Corporation of America, Hampton, Virginia, to determine the sta-
                        tus and results to date of the skill degradation study it is conducting for
                        the Army; and
                        U.S. Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences,
                        Alexandria, Virginia, to determine the methodology developed for
                        assessing skill degradation in the IRR.

                        Throughout this review, we relied on published Army and Department
                        of Defense (DOD) reports for the data used as background support, such


                        Page 10                       GAO/NSIAD-90-56   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reeerves
_ . *I_.“-...--_-.
                     Chapter 1
                     Introduction




                     as population figures. Also, we used data from ARPERCENIRR manage-
                     ment databases to support our analyses and conclusions. We performed
                     limited reliability assessments of these databases. Our work was con-
                     ducted between August 1988 and July 1989 in accordance with gener-
                     ally accepted government auditing standards,




                     Page 11                     GAO/NSIADSO-65   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
Chapter 2       -----

IRR Training DoesNot Focuson Skills That Are
Most Neededin the Early Days of Conflict

  ._....
     -     -_
                        The IRR plays a vital role in this nation’s defense under the Total Force
                        Policy. Because there may not be enough time to train IRR soldiers after
                        mobilization, their readiness must be maintained in peacetime through
                        periodic refresher training. However, IRR training is a low priority
                        within the Army, and few IRR members receive training. In addition, the
                        IRK training program does not focus available funds on skills that require
                        refresher training and are most needed in the early days of conflict. The
                        Army’s failure to focus funds on such skills is due to several factors.
                        First, the Army’s first training priority is to provide professional devcl-
                        opment education to IRR members needing it for promotion, rather than
                        to provide refresher training to IRR members required in the first
                        30 days of mobilization. Second, training funds are used to provide non-
                        training tours (such as those for recruiting for the United States Military
                        Academy, West Point, or for participating in a marksmanship program)
                        and multiple training tours to some IRR members, thus limiting the
                        number of soldiers trained. Third, funds and training are not distributed
                        based on early mobilization requirements. Lastly, the determination of
                        which skills require refresher training and how frequently has not yet
                        been made.


                        Because there may not be enough time upon mobilization to provide
Importance of           refresher training to IRR soldiers, the failure to provide that training
Training to IRR         during peacetime could jeopardize the performance of these soldiers and
Preparedness            the success of the units they join.

                        The importance of having a well prepared IRR was highlighted recently
                        by the Chief of the Army Reserve. In a report to the Congress, he stated:

                        “The readiness of IRR soldiers to fill identified wartime shortages, and their ability
                        to perform successfully in active and reserve units upon mobilization are essential               a
                        factors in the mobilization equation.“’

                        To help ensure the ability of IRR soldiers to perform successfully, the
                        Department of Defense emphasized the need for IRR refresher training in
                        its defense guidance for fiscal years 1986 to 1990:

                        “In order to maintain the readiness of personnel in the Individual Ready Reserve
                        (IRR) the services will develop and program refresher training, as necessary, by
                        skill, to maintain the minimum proficiency necessary to support employment or
                        deployment of the IRR upon mobilization.”


                        ’ Postureof the 1J.S.Army Reserve,FiscalYear 1989.



                        Page 12                              GAO/NSLAD-90-66   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                   Chapter 2
                   IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skills That
                   Are Most Needed in the Early Da,ys
                   of Conflict




                   According to DOD,the Army also has a system to provide post-
                   mobilization refresher training to IRR soldiers. Under this system, units
                   to which soldiers are assigned will evaluate their proficiency and pro-
                   vide any necessary refresher training. In cases in which the unit cannot
                   provide adequate refresher training, the soldier will be returned to the
                   training base.

                   However, according to Army officials, this system does not ensure that
                   IRR soldiers can be trained and sent to the theaters within 30 days after
                   mobilization. This situation is significant because the Army assumes
                   that only personnel trained in the last 12 months are deployable with
                   minimal post-mobilization training. As of September 30, 1988, IRR mem-
                   bers in this category numbered about 43,000. According to Army offi-
                   cials, all of these personnel would be used to replace early combat
                   casualties.


                   In fiscal year 1988, only 4 percent of IRRsoldiers received training. In
Few IRR Members    the prior fiscal year, only about 5 percent received training. ARPERCEN
Receive Training   officials told us that additional volunteers had been refused training due
                   to budgetary constraints. Army officials attribute this low level of train-
                   ing to the low priority IRRtraining has in the Army. ARPEIZCEN   officials
                   told us that the low initial budget amounts and the frequent reprogram-
                   ming of IRRtraining funds have resulted in insufficient and unreliable
                   funding for the training program. According to the Department of
                   Defense Reserve Forces Policy Board, the lack of mobilization training
                   funds reduces the readiness of the IRR and IRR soldiers’ effectiveness
                   upon mobilization.’ Despite this view, the Army has not made IRR mobili-
                   zation training a high priority. According to Army officials, the Army
                   considers the training of other reservists and Reserve Officer Training
                   Corps members to be more important.

                   The level of funding provided to IRRtraining is one indicator of its low
                   priority. In fiscal year 1988, $54 million was provided for IRR training,
                   whereas $1.2 billion was provided for the training of Selected Reserve
                   members. Despite the fairly constant level of the IRR population from
                    1985 to 1989, funding for IRRtraining has dropped considerably from
                   the fiscal year 1985 level of about $87 million. The training budget for
                   fiscal year 1989 was $51 million; however, an official of the Chief of the
                   Army Reserve, Comptroller Division, said that he expected the actual
                   amount spent to be approximately $5 million lower than the amount

                   ‘Rcwrve Com~ment Programs, Fiscal Year 1988, Report of the Reserve Forces Policy Board.



                   Page 13                                        GAO/NSIAD-90-66   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves



                                                       .<,
                                                 ,_i
                                                                                                                 .,    /
                                                  !:”        4:    .;   ,,   ;,
                                                    .,
                       Chapter 2
                       IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skills That
                       Are Most Needed in the Early Days
                       of Conflict




                       budgeted. Another indicator of IRRtraining’s low funding priority is the
                       reprogramming of funds from the IRR mobilization training account. In
                       fiscal year 1988, for example, although almost $72 million was budgeted
                       for IRR mobilization training, about $18 million (25 percent) of that
                       amount was reprogrammed. Most of these funds were reprogrammed to
                       other Army Reserve Personnel accounts to provide training to members
                       of the Selected Reserve and the Reserve Officer Training Corps. Army
                       officials said that, the reprogramming of funds makes it difficult for
                       ARPERCEN’S   managers to plan training for IRR soldiers. ARPERCENofficials
                       told us that IRRmembers generally need 2 months’ notice in order to
                       leave their civilian jobs and make other necessary arrangements before
                       attending training. Uncertain funding levels make it more difficult to
                       ensure the training of IRRmembers.


                       The IRRtraining program does not focus funds on skills that require
IRR Training Funds     refresher training and are most needed in the early days of conflict.
Are Not Focused on     Instead, the Army’s first priority for IRRtraining is professional devel-
Wartime Requirements   opment education. In addition, mobilization training funds are used
                       (1) for non-training purposes such as participation in a marksmanship
                       program, (2) for multiple training tours to some individuals even though
                       most soldiers received no training, and (3) for training in military spe-
                       cialties not required in the first 30 days of mobilization.

                       In fiscal year 1988, the Army provided 16,410 active duty tours to IRR
                       soldiers, However, less than one-half of the tours were for training
                       soldiers required in the first 30 days of mobilization. Some training tours
                       were for non-training activities; some were multiple tours to the same
                       soldiers; and others were given to soldiers not required in the first
                       30 days of mobilization. As a result, only about 8,000 soldiers required
                       in the first 30 days of mobilization received training. Table 2.1 summa-                         a
                       rizes the distribution of training tours.




                       Page 14                              GAO/N&ID-90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                                         Chapter 2
                                         IRR Tralnlng Does Not Focus on Skills That
                                         Are Most Needed in the Early Days
                                         of c4mflict




Table 2.1: Distribution of Active Duty
Tours in Fiscal Year 1998                Tours/soldiers trained                              Officers               Enlisted             Total
                                         Total tours                                             8,376                 8,034            16,410
                                         Non-training tours                                       -1,504                -701           -2,205

                                         Training
                                         -..  -.A~---...----.
                                                              tours                                 6,872               7,333           14,205
                                         Multiple training tours                                  -1,117                -840           -1,957

                                         Individual soldiers trained                               5,755                6,493           12,248
                                         Number of soldiers trained not required
                                            in first 30 days                                      -3,662                -584           -4,246

                                         Number of soldiers trained required in
                                           first 30 davs                                           2.093                5.909            8.002


                                         In fiscal year 1987 the Army provided training to about 10,000 IRR
                                         soldiers needed in the first 30 days of mobilization.

                                         According to ARPERCENofficials, because of funding constraints, IRR
                                         mobilization training should be based on requirements in the first
                                         30 days of mobilization. In this time frame, the majority (almost
                                         70 percent) of the IRRrequirements to bring deploying and stateside sup-
                                         port units to wartime strength are for enlisted soldiers in skill levels 1
                                         and 2, the lowest enlisted skill levels.:’ Despite this fact, the IRRofficer
                                         population received more than half-62 percent-of all training dollars
                                         in fiscal year 1988, Furthermore, officers received nearly 50 percent of
                                         all training tours, despite the fact that, as ARPERCENofficials told us,
                                         enlisted volunteers are refused training.

                                         We found that professional development education-not       mobilization
                                         readiness training for IRR members needed in the first 30 days of mobili-
                                         zation-is the Army’s first IRRtraining priority because professional                                    6
                                         development education is required for promotion and because of the
                                         “up-or-out” requirement for IRRofficers. Although professional develop-
                                         ment education is a type of mobilization training, putting priority on
                                         those who need professional development education without regard to
                                         the timing of the Army’s need for them during mobilization tends to
                                         skew training away from IRR members needed in the first 30 days of
                                         mobilization.

                                         “Skill level 1 - Enlisted E-3 to E-4.
                                         Skill level 2 - Enlisted E-6.
                                         Skill level 3 - Enlisted E-6.
                                         Skill level 4 - Enlisted E-7.
                                         Skill level 6 - Enlisted E-8 to E-9.



                                         Page 15                                 GAO/NSIAD90-56      The Army’s   Individual    Ready Reserves
----~-
         Chapter 2
         IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skllla That
         Are Most Needed in the Early Days
         of ConfIict




         According to ARPERCENofficials, the “up-or-out” requirement for officers
         is a primary reason that officers received 66 percent of the professional
         development training. Because of this requirement, IRRofficers have a
         greater incentive to train than enlisted members. First lieutenants, cap-
         tains, and majors who are passed over for promotion twice are either
         transferred to the Retired Reserve (if eligible) or discharged. In addition,
         officers are required to complete certain professional development
         courses prior to being eligible for promotion within the IRR. Although
         enlisted soldiers in grades E-5 and above have professional development
         education requirements to fulfill in order to be eligible for promotion,
         they are not subject to the “up-or-out” requirement; they are not
         removed from the IRR if they are not promoted.

         In fiscal year 1988, some mobilization training funds were used for non-
         training purposes. Of the $54 million budgeted for mobilization training,
         more than $14 million (26 percent) was spent on tours to perform active
         duty for special work. By the Army’s definition, these tours are not
         training tours, but they provide essential support for the accomplish-
         ment of Army Reserve missions, projects, or exercises. The Army con-
         siders any training benefit received from active duty for special work
         tours as incidental. An example of active duty for special work is the
         Military Academy Liaison Officer program. In this program, IRR soldiers
         serve as liaisons in admission-related activities between the United
         States Military Academy, West Point, and prospective candidates. In fis-
         cal year 1988, IIZRofficers and enlisted soldiers conducted 675 military
         academy liaison tours, at a cost of about $448,000.

         ARI'ERCENofficials told us that the Army’s marksmanship program is
         another example of a non-training activity. Under this program, IRR
         soldiers provide support to and participate in marksmanship competi-
         tions. In fiscal year 1988, IRR members went on 750 marksmanship tours                           b
         at a cost of about $2 million. While some of these tours were classified
         as active duty for special work, 592 at a cost of about $1.6 million were
         not.

         Training funds also are used to provide multiple training tours. The
         Army has not determined how frequently IRRsoldiers’ skills need to be
         refreshed and, therefore, assumes that only personnel trained within the
         last 12 months are deployable with minimal post-mobilization training.
         One way to maximize the percentage of soldiers immediately deployable
         is to provide as many as possible with a training tour during a given
         year and to minimize the number of soldiers who receive multiple tours
         during the year. However, in fiscal year 1988, the Army provided


         Pagr 16                             GAO/NSLAD-90-56   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
Chapter 2
IRR Train-  Does Not Focus on Skills That
Are Most Needed in the Early Days
of Conflict




almost 2,000 multiple tours to IRR soldiers. Sixteen percent (1,117) of all
officer and 11 percent (840) of all enlisted tours were multiple tours.
These figures do not include programs that ARPERCENofficials identified
as requiring multiple tours. Additionally, ARPERCENofficials cited profes-
sional development education as a program that does not require multi-
ple tours in the same year. ARPERCENofficials told us that they
recognized that multiple tours reduce the number of soldiers who can be
trained and thereby reduce the number of soldiers who can be deployed
with minimal post-mobilization training. These officials said that in
.January 1989, they issued guidance that included the direction to keep
multiple tours to a minimum.

We also determined that training is given to IRR soldiers in military spe-
cialties not identified as requirements for the first 30 days of mobiliza-
tion In fiscal year 1988,64 percent of the officers and 9 percent of
enlisted personnel in the IRR who received training were not required for
the first 30 days of mobilization. For example, despite the fact that no
IRR officers with transportation-related  military specialties were needed
in the first 30 days of mobilization, 45 officers with these specialties
were trained. The portion of all IRRsoldiers trained who were not
required for the first 30 days of mobilization is shown in figure 2.1.




Page 17                             GAO/NSIAD-90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                                                     Chapter 2
                                                     IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skills That
                                                     Are Most Needed in the Early Days
                                                     of Conflict




Figure 2.1: Portion of IRR Soldiers Trained in Fiscal Year 1988 in Excess of 30-Day Requirements
Nwnbw   of IRRSoldkra
so00




               Trained in Excess
               Trained to Meet 30-Day Requirements


                                                     The Army has not determined which IRK skills require refresher training
The Army Lacks                                       and how frequently refresher training should be conducted. In addition,
Information on                                       although the Army has developed a model for prioritizing the training of
                                                     IKR members needed in the earliest days of mobilization, it is not being
Refresher Training                                   used as the basis for providing training.
Needs and Has Not
Adequately Defined
Training Priorities

Army Lacks Data on Skill                             In its defense guidance for fiscal years 1986 to 1990, the Department of
Decay                                                Defense directed the services to (1) determine IRR skill decay and the
                        Y                            most appropriate timing of refresher training and (2) begin refresher
                                                     training no later than fiscal year 1988. In fiscal years 1985 and 1986,
                                                     the Training and Doctrine Command developed and tested refresher


                                                     Page 18                              GAO/NSLAD-90-56   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
                                        Ch&er     2
                                        IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skills That
                                        Are Most Needed in the Early Days
                                        of Contuct




                                        training courses designed for enlisted IRR soldiers whose military spe-
                                        cialties had been identified as most critical by the Office of the Chief of
                                        the Army Reserve. Courses were established for skill level 2 and 3
                                        soldiers in 44 military specialties. In fiscal year 1988, approximately
                                        900 IRR members took these courses.

                                        Also, in 1987, the Army contracted, at a cost of about $251,000, for a
                                        study of the task retention and refresher training requirements of the
                                        IRR. The study was designed to determine skill degradation and refresher
                                        training needs of IRR soldiers in three enlisted military specialties. In
                                        addition, using the data gathered on the three specialties, the Army
                                        hoped to validate the active Army’s skill retention prediction method for
                                        use for IRR enlisted soldiers in all specialties. Of nearly 360 enlisted mili-
                                        tary specialties, almost all are represented in the IRR.

                                        One military specialty from each of the Army’s three branches-combat
                                        arms, combat support, and combat-service support-was           selected for
                                        study. According to the study methodology developed by the Training
                                        and Doctrine Command with the assistance of the Army Research
                                        Institute, at least 120 soldiers in each of the three specialties were to be
                                        trained and tested. Once trained, the soldiers participating in the study
                                        were to receive no additional training from the Army until after they
                                        returned for skill retention retesting at one of three predetermined inter-
                                        vals (2 months, 6 months, or 12 months). The methodology required a
                                        minimum of 40 soldiers per military specialty at each of the three retest
                                        periods. The study methodology is illustrated in table 2.2.
.l_..-l_
Table 2.2: Numbers of Soldiers to Be
Tested in IRR Skill Degradation Study                                                                       Retest interval
                                        Military specialty                     Initial
                                                                                  --.-- test        2-month _______-
                                                                                                                 6-month                 iP-month
                                        Combat arms                                     120               40                   40                40
                                        Combat support                                  120               40                   40                40   l
                                                         .~~ -.   --_----__-                   -.
                                        Combat-service      support                     120               40                   40                40


                                        The actual study methodology, however, differed significantly from the
                                        designed methodology. As shown in table 2.3, participation at the retest
                                        intervals was insufficient in all three military specialties.




                                        Page 19                                 GAO/NSIAD90-55       The Army’s   Individual        Ready Reserves
                                     Chapter 2
                                     IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skills That
                                     Are Most Needed in the Early Days
                                     of conflict




Table 2.3: Number of Soldiers Who
Actually Participated in IRR Skill                                                                    Retest interval
Degradation Study                    Military specialty                  Initial test       2-month        6-month           1P-month
                                                                                                                              ___-
                                     Combat arms                                  141            26                    30            10
                                     Combat support                               153            31                    22             3
                                     Combat-service support                        53            25                    10             0


                                     In the combat service-support specialty, only 53 soldiers were initially
                                     trained and tested, even though the design methodology required at
                                     least 120 soldiers. Further, some soldiers in this specialty were retested
                                     at 2-month and 6-month intervals, even though not enough soldiers were
                                     initially tested to use the data collected. Additionally, the minimum of
                                     40 soldiers was not retested at any interval for any of the specialties.

                                     Training and Doctrine Command officials told us that, as a result of the
                                     low participation in the study, the Army has decided to do additional
                                     retesting in an attempt to gather more 12-month interval data for the
                                     combat arms specialty. The officials said that this was the only specialty
                                     selected for additional retesting because they believe they are more
                                     likely to get retest participants in that specialty than in the others.

                                     Although there are problems with the number of soldiers tested at each
                                     interval, there are even greater problems with the data collected. The
                                     contractor’s preliminary analysis of the data gathered as of May 1989
                                     indicates that skill retention increases over time, a finding that appears
                                     questionable. The contractor found that participants at the 6-month and
                                     12-month retest intervals generally performed better than those at the
                                     2-month interval. The contractor determined that the civilian occupa-
                                     tions of those tested did not account for these improved test results.

                                     Despite the lack of participation and questionable results, Training and                             L
                                     Doctrine Command officials said that data collection efforts on the com-
                                     bat arms specialty continued in an attempt to validate the active Army’s
                                     skill retention prediction method for the IRR. According to the Army
                                     Research Institute official who helped design the study methodology,
                                     however, validation cannot be achieved with data on only one military
                                     specialty. According to DOD,data collection has been completed, and
                                     results are being compiled.




                                     Page 20                              GAO/NSIAD-90-66    The Army’s   Individual    Ready Reserves
                                  Chapter 2
                                  IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skills That
                                  Are Must Needed ln the Early Days
                                  of c4mfllct




The Army’s System for             The Army headquarters’ Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for
Setting Training Priorities       Operations and Plans developed a model for prioritizing the training of
                                  IRR members needed in the earliest days of mobilization. The model pro-
Was Not Used                      duces separate priority lists for enlisted and officer IRR members. The
                                  model prioritizes training based on factors for (1) the projected number
                                  of IRR soldiers required at each skill level in each military specialty in
                                  the first 30 days of mobilization and (2) the number of weeks required
                                  to train an individual to fill each of the requirements.

                                  However, although priority lists were produced for fiscal year 1988, the
                                  model was not used to produce these lists, and officials of the Office of
                                  the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans could not explain
                                  how most of the factors used in establishing the priorities for that year
                                  had been determined. Moreover, the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff
                                  for Operations and Plans did not provide ARPERCENwith adequate guid-
                                  ance on using the priority lists. As a result, ARPERCENtraining officials
                                  stated that they had not used them.


                                  Readiness training for the IRRhas low priority within the Army, as evi-
Conclusions                       denced by the limited funding and the small percentage of soldiers
                                  trained in recent years. With the Army’s reliance on the IRR to fill early
                                  mobilization requirements, limited IRRtraining opportunities create some
                                  risk in terms of the Army’s capacity to implement its Total Force Policy.

                                  The Army lacks information on the refresher training needs of its IRR
                                  soldiers, and the study designed to validate the active Army’s skill
                                  retention predication method for use for IRR enlisted specialties is seri-
                                  ously flawed. Despite these flaws, the Army continued to support data
                                  collection for this purpose.

                                  Furthermore, the Army did not always make the best use of the limited
                                  training funds that were available. If the IRRtraining program is to be
                                  more effective, the Army needs to take a number of steps to provide
                                  some assurance that available training funds are spent wisely and result
                                  in a greater contribution to mobilization readiness.


                                  We recommend that the Secretary of the Army make more effective use
Recommendations                   of mobilization training funds by taking the following actions:
               I
                              l   establishing overall guidance and controls directed towards ensuring
                                  that available training funds are focused on mobilization requirements


                                  Page 2 1                             GAO/NSIAD90-66   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves




                                                               :
                                                                                                                            .
                          Chapter 2
                          IRR Training Does Not Focus on Skills That
                          Are Most Needed in the Early Days
                          of conflict




                        with special emphasis on IRR members needed in the first 30 days of
                        mobilization and
                      . determining the content and frequency of required refresher training.


                          DODagreed with all of our recommendations (see app. I). In a draft of
Agency Comments and       this report, we proposed that on the basis of the level of funding made
Our Evaluation            available to train IRRmembers in recent years and the limited number of
                          soldiers trained for mobilization, the Secretary of the Army (1) assess
                          the risk associated with depending on the IRRto fill early mobilization
                          requirements and (2) decide whether the benefits realized from the
                          Individual Ready Reserve training program warrant its continuation.
                          The Department said that it had determined that there were no viable
                          alternatives to using the IRRto meet wartime requirements and that it
                          would work with the Army to refine the process of assessing the risks
                          associated with depending on the IRRwhen deciding how best to meet
                          potential wartime manpower requirements. DODcited meeting statutory
                          requirements and enhancing total Army readiness as benefits of IRR
                          training and said that the Army considered benefits derived from the
                          current program sufficient to warrant continuation of the training
                          program.

                          In response to our recommendations on the use of mobilization training
                          funds, DODmade the following comments:

                      l It will work with the Army to develop better methods of focusing avail-
                        able training funds on refresher training for IRR members needed in the
                        first 30 days of mobilization, DODhas formed a Joint Task Group on
                        Army Manpower Mobilization/Training to conduct a comprehensive
                        review of mobilization training. The task group is developing additional
                        guidance with more definitive procedures on the management and                                      &
                        mobilization training of IRRmembers.
                      . It will work with the Army to determine the content and frequency of
                        required refresher training. It expects to develop a policy statement on
                        the training of the IRRto be followed by the publication of a IKID direc-
                        tive. Drafting the directive is one of the tasks of the DODJoint Task
                        Group on Army Manpower Mobilization/Training, and according to its
                        Chairman, the group expects to address the specific means by which
                        these determinations can be made.

                          DODgenerally agreed with our audit findings. DODnoted, however, that
                          in all but the worst case scenarios, mobilization will occur through a
                          phased process that will permit time for refresher training for many


                          Page 22                              GAO/NSIAD-90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
Chapter 2
IRR Training Does Not Focus on Sldlls That
Are Most Needed ln the Early Days
of Conflict




mobilized IRR members. DODstated that it supports refresher training in
peacetime for those who need it and, within available resources, will
provide it.

DODfurther stated that the initial call-up of the Army IRR will consist
largely of individuals who have been serving in active or selected Army
National Guard or .Army Reserve unit programs sometime in the previ-
ous 12 months and who are still considered trained. We agree that some
of the IRK members called up initially will most likely fit into this cate-
gory. However, the majority will not. The Army anticipates a need for
about 115,000 IRR members in the first 30 days of mobilization. As of
September 30, 1988, there were only about 43,000 IRRmembers in the
group trained in the previous 12 months. Because not all of them have
the particular military specialties the Army anticipates needing in the
early days of mobilization, it is clear that this group of soldiers will not
form the bulk of the IRRmembers needed in the early days,

LWDdid not agree with a statement in our draft report that there was no
system in place to convert IRRmembers from their civilian status, pro-
vide refresher training to them, and get them to the theaters within
30 days after mobilization. We have changed the report to recognize the
Army’s system to provide post-mobilization refresher training. How-
ever, this system does not ensure that necessary training can be com-
pleted within 30 days.

DODagreed that only a small portion of the IRR had received training in
any given year and said that more can be done to provide training for
these soldiers, especially for junior and mid-level enlisted soldiers with
skills for which wartime shortages exist. DODmaintains, however, that
many IRRmembers do not require proficiency training because (1) they
have separated from active duty or reserve unit status within the prior                          a
 12 months and are considered trained or (2) they are within 12 months
of completing their military service obligations, and generally, training
funds are not expended on them. In addition, DODcommented that peace-
time training is not necessary for a large number of IRRmembers who
hold combat and certain combat service-support military occupational
skills, since these soldiers can be provided tailored, short-duration
refresher training either in the units to which they will be assigned or
from the training base during the early periods of mobilization. A DOD
official told us that this comment was based on DOD'Soverall perception
of skill retention rather than an analysis by military occupational spe-
cialty. The official said that the DODJoint Task Group on Army
Manpower Mobilization/Training expected to make such an analysis.


Page 23                             GAO/NSIAD-90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
Appendix I

CommentsFrom the Department of Defense


Note GAO comments
supplementing those tn the
report text appear at the
end of this appendix
                                                      ASSISTANT        SECRETARY               OF DEFENSE

                                                               WASHINGTON.      0x2.   20301




                                                                                                     December   7,   1989




                             Mr. Frank C. Conahan
                             Assistant      Comptroller     General
                             National      Security    and
                                International       Affairs   Division,
                             U.S. General Accounting          Office
                             Washington,      D.C. 20548
                             Dear Mr. Conahan:
                                   This is the DOD response to the GAO Draft Report “ARMY
                             TRAINING:    Benefits  of Individual   Ready Reserve Training May Not
                             Warrant Its Continuation",      dated October 23, 1989 (GAO Code
                             393313), OSD case 8158.
                                      The DOD generally            agrees with the GAO findings              and recommen-
                             dations.        The Department emphasizes,                  however, that the
                             professional          development        and training        of leadership      skills        for
                             Individual        Ready Reserve officers               and non-commissioned          officers
                             is necessary          to maintain        the wartime readiness            of these valuable
                             pre-trained         leaders      and trainers.           Upon mobilization       these
                             Reservists        will    be required,         in many cases, to assume immediate
                             leadership        roles in combat, combat support,                    and combat      service
                             support      units      or in the training            base.    Individual      Ready Reserve
                             training,       in conjunction           with support of active            force exercises,
                             annual training           activities,        real-world       base operations         functions,
                             as well as individual               refresher       training     with active     force
                             units,     is performed          largely     on a volunteer         basis.     These
                             activities        contribute        directly      to the readiness         of the members           a
                             who participate,           as well       as to the wartime          readiness    of the Total
                             Force.
                                     The DOD agrees that the management of Individual                        Ready
                             Reserve     training       must be improved,        particularly        in enlisted
                             refresher      training.        In order to address this problem and other
                             related     issues,      in August    1989,    the Office        of the Secretary       of
                             Defense formed a Joint Task Group with representatives                            from the
                             Joint and Service           Staffs.     The principal        objectives     of this Joint
                             Task Group are the improved manpower management and mobilization
                             training      of the Pre-trained         Individual       Manpower resources          of the
                             armed    forces . New policy guidance and more definitive                        management
                             procedures       will    be established       and incorporated         in appropriate
                             DOD Directives.




                                 Page24                                      GAO/NSIAD90-55TheArmy's IndividualReady Reserves
       Appendix I
       Comments From the Department   of Defense




                                                                                      2
       The detailed    DoD comments on the report    findings    and
recommendations     are provided   in the enclosure.      The Department
appreciates    the opportunity   to comment on the draft      report.
                                            Sincerely,



                                            Stephen      M. Duncan
Enclosure
As Stated




      Page 25                             GAO/NSIAD-SO-66   The   Army's Individual Ready Reserves
.___.~.__..._,_..
            -.- ._.._.. .._..-..-..- .____~-                                                                         -
                                                      Appendix1
                                                      CommentsFromthe DepartmentofDefense




                                                               GAO DRAFT REPORT - DATED OCTOBER 23, 1989
                                                                    (GAO CODE 393313) OSD CASE 8158

                                                       “ARMY    TRAINING: BENEFITS OF INDIVIDUAL READY RESERVE
                                                               TRAINING MAY NOT WARRANTITS CONTINUATION"
                                                                     DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE COMMENTS
                                                                                    ******

                                                                                      FINDINGS

                                               FINDING A:         Backarwund:      Individual     Readv Rese ve       The GAO
                                               observed that the Individual              Ready Reserve numf;erAd about 293,000
                                               soldiers--approximately            12 percent of the Army's total          manpower
                                               available       for mobilization       at the end of FY 1988.         The GAO noted
                                               that about 47,000 (16 percent)               were officers    and the remaining
                                               246,000 (84 percent)           were enlisted.       According    to the GAO, the
                                               Individual        Ready Reserve is expected to reach 400,000 by the
                                               early     1990s because of an increase           in the Military      Service obli-
                                               gation     period    from 6 to 8 years.
                                               The GAO reported   that,  in the time of war, Individual            Ready
                                               Reserve soldiers   report   to mobilization     stations    for assignment
                                               to units.   The GAO noted that,      in peacetime,      the Individual      Ready
                                               Reserve is managed by the Army Reserve Personnel            Center--a     field
                                               operating  agency of the Office      of the Chief of the Army Reserve.
                                               The GAO observed that,    in FY 1988, approximately         $54 million       was
                                               spent on the Individual     Ready Reserve    mobilization      training
                                               program.


                                               FINDING B: Role of Individual             Ready Reserve in Total Force
                                               Pwlicv is Significant.           The GAO observed that the defense of the
                                               United States relies         heavily    upon the ability     of the Army to
                                               mobilize,       deploy,   and reinforce    combat-ready    forces quickly.    The
                                               GAO noted that         the manpower ceiling     for the Active     component has
                                               led the Army to develop a Total Force policy               in order to carry
                                               out that defense.          The GAO explained      that,  under the Total Force
                                               policy,      all available    troops,    Active and Reserve, will      be used to
                                               meet      the needs of combat.
                                               The GAO pointed          out that,   since the Total Force policy     was estab-
                                               lished,     the role of the Reserve component has grown as the Army
                                               has increased         its reliance     on Reserve forces to perform many
                                               missions      required      in the first   stages of conflict.    The GAO
                                               learned that the Total Force Policy              requires  many Reserve units
                                               and soldiers        to deploy in the same capacity,        at the same time,   as
                                               their    Active-duty        component counterparts.




                                                     Page 2s                                 GAO/NSIAD-90-66TheArmy's IndividualReady Reserves


                                                                               ,.     I'
       Appendix I
       CommentsFromthe DepartmentofDefense




                                                                                       2

According      to the GAO, in the first          30 days of mobilization           the
Army will      rely on about 115,000 Individual            Ready Reserve soldiers
to bring deploying          and stateside      support units    to wartime
strength.        The GAO further      indicated     that the Army will        use
additional       Individual    Ready Reserve soldiers         to replace      early
combat casualties.           The GAOconcluded         that the ability       of the
soldiers     in the Individual        Ready Reserve to perform their             wartime
skills     is an integral      part of the Army warflghting            strategy.

-:                   Partially     Concur.       The DOD emphasizes however,
that training       priorities     reflect     the fact that most scenarios,
except worse case, anticipate              that mobilization         will     occur
through a phased process.             The phased process permits               time for
refresher    training        for many mobilized        Individual     Ready Reserve
members. The DOD supports refresher                  training     in peacetime for
those who need it and, within              available      resources,      will    provide
it.
The initial       callup   of the Army Individual    Ready Reserve will
consist     largely     of individuals   who have been serving   on active
duty or in Selected          Reserve unit programs sometime in the previ-
ous twelve months and are still           considered  trained.
The Individual     Ready Reserve pool     will be used initially    to meet
forward deployed and deploying        unit shortfalls.     Requirements
for stateside     support units will     be met using retired    members,
Standby Reservists      and civilians    along with small numbers of
Individual     Ready Reservists.
FINDINO:       ImDortance      of Traininol                      Reach Fwerve
-.                The GAO observed that,           since there may not be
enough time upon mobilization           to provide     refresher    training     to
Individual   Ready Reserve soldiers,          failure     to provide     that train-
ing during peacetime could jeopardize              the performance       of these
soldiers   and, ultimately,        the success of the units         they join.
The GAO referenced       a recent report      by the Chief of the Army
Reserve that highlighted         the importance       of having a well prepared
Individual   Ready Reserve.          The GAO pointed      out that the Depart-
ment of Defense has emphasized the need for Individual                     Ready
Reserve refresher      training      in its FY 1986 to FY 1990 Defense
Guidance to help ensure the ability             of the Individual        Ready
Reserve soldiers     to perform successfully.
The GAO found that,            according   to Army officials,        there is no
system in place to (1) take Individual                  Ready Reserve members from
their     civilian     status,     (2) provide    refresher   training       to them,
and (3) get them to the theaters               within    30 days after       mobiliza-
tion.       The GAO concluded         that this is a significant          deficiency--
because the Army assumes that only those personnel                      trained     in the
last 12 months are deployable              with minimal post-mobilization
training.          The GAO observed that,       as of September 30, 1989,




       Page27                               GAO/NSIAD90-SSThe Army's IndividualReady Reserves
.----.--~
                       Appendix1
                       CommentsFromthe DepartmentofDefense




                                                                                                            3


                Individual  Ready Reserve members   falling   in this "trained"  cate-
                gory numbered about 43,000.    The GAO indicated     that all of these
                personnel  would be used to replace     early combat oasualties.
                w:               Partially    Concur.     The DOD agrees that the Indi-
                vidual  Ready Reserve soldiers      are primarily    used to bring Active
                and Reserve component units      to full    combat strength  and ae re-
                placements  for combat casualties.         The Department does not agree,
                however, with the GAO statement        that there is no System in place
                to process Individual      Ready Reserves.
                The Army has a system for accessing,               processing     and training     of
                mobilized    Individual       Ready Reservists.        This process is carried
                out at each of the 54 mobilization              stations.      Upon reporting,
                each individual       will    be evaluated    to determine      the currency      and
                proficiency      of his or her skill(s).           Post mobilization       refresher
                training    will    occur in the unit of assignment            where appropriate.
                In cases where adequate refresher             training     cannot be accomplished
                in the unit,      the individual      will  be returned       to the training
See comment 1   base for necessary         training.
                Post mobilization         training      is addressed in the Army's Reserve
                Component Training          Development Action Plan, dated May 18, 1989.
                In addition,      a joint      task group at the Office            of the Secretary       of
                Defense, which included            representatives        of the Army staff,        was
                formed in August,         1989.      One purpose of the task group is to
                conduct a comprehensive            review of mobilization            training.     The
                task    group has already         determined       that additional        guidance on the
                management and mobilization               training     of Individual        Ready Reserve
                members is necessary           and that a DOD Directive            on the subject,
                providing    more definitive          procedures,       should be published.         The
                directive     should be issued by the end of FY 1990.
                FINDING D: Few Individual                  Readv Rese ve Members Receive Tra!
                &r&g. The GAO observed that,                  in FY 19g8, only 4 percent of the
                Individual        Ready Reserve soldiers             actually      received       any training.
                The GAO also noted that,                 In the prior      fiscal     year, only about 5
                percent     received        training.       According      to the GAO, Army Personnel
                Center officials            stated that there were additional                    volunteers--
                but who were refused training                   due to budgetary         constraints.           The
                GAO reported         that Army officials           attribute       this level         of training
                to the low priority              training     has in the Army.           The GAO found that
                the low initial           budget amounts and frequent                reprogramming          of
                Individual        Ready Reserve training             funds has resulted             in insuffi-
                cient    and unreliable            funding    for the training          program.        The GAO
                referred      to a Department of Defense Reserve Forces Policy                              Board
                statement       that the lack of mobilization                 training       funds reduces
                the readiness          of the Individual          Ready Reserve and reduces the
                effectiveness          of the Individual          Ready Reserve soldiers               upon
                mobilization.            The GAO indicated         that,     despite     this view, the
                Army has not made Individual                  Ready Reserve mobilization                training
                a higher      priority--the           Army continues       to consider         the training       of
                other Reservists            and Reserve Officer           Training      Corps members to be
                more Important.




                       Page2H                                  GAO/NSIAD-90-SSTheArmy'sIndividualReady Reserves
---
               Appendix I
               CommentsFrom the DepartmentofDefense




                                                                                                      4

      The GAO explained         that the level of funding          provided    to Indivldu-
      al Ready Reserve training            is one indicator      of its low priority.
      The GAO pointed        out that,     in FY 1988, only 854 million           was pro-
      vided for Individual           Ready Reserve training      --whereas     $1.2 billion
      was provided      for the training        of Selected     Reserve Membera.          The
      GAO further      pointed      out that,   despite   the fairly      constant     level
      of the Individual         Ready Reserve, training         has dropped consider-
      ably from the FY 1985 level             of about $87 million.         The GAO esti-
      mated that,     of the $51 million         for Individual       Ready Reserve
      training    available       for FY 1959, only about $46 million              would be
      spent.
      The GAO cited        the reprogramming            of funds from the Individual
      Ready Reserve mobilization                training     account as another indicator
      of the low priority            of Individual        Ready Reserve training.             The
      GAO explained        that,      in FY 1988, almost $72 million               was budgeted
      for Individual         Ready Reserve mobilization             training--however,
      about $18 million           (or 25 percent)         of that was reprogrammed.             The
      GAO pointed      out that most of these funds were reprogrammed to
      other Army Reserve Personnel                  accounts to provide        training     to
      members of the Selected               Reserve and the Reserve Officer              Training
      Corps.     The GAO concluded            that the reprogramming           of these funds
      makes it difficult            for Army Personnel         Center managers to plan
      training     for Individual           Ready Reserve soldiers.            According      to the
      GAO, Army Personnel             Center managers stated that Individual                  Ready
      Reserve members generally               need two months' notice            in order to
      leave their      civilian         jobs and make other necessary              arrangements
      before attending          training.         The GAO concluded        that uncertain
      funding    levels      make It more difficult            to assure Individual           Ready
      Reserve members of training.
      DOD Response:           Partially        Concur.         The DOD agrees that only a
      small portion          of the Individual             Ready Reserve receives              training
      in any given year,              Many individual             Reservists,        however, do not
      require     proficiency         training       because (1) they have separated
      from active        duty or reserve unit status within                        the prior       12
      months and are considered                 trained        or (2) they are within              12
      months of completing              their     military        service     obligation       and the
      Department generally              does not expend training                 funds on them.           In
      addition,      peacetime training              is not necessary            for a number of
      individual       Reservists         who hold combat and certain                    combat service
      support military            occupational         skills,       since these soldiers             can
      be provided        tailored       short duration            refresher      training     either      in
      the units      to which they will              be assigned or from the training
      base during        the early periods             of mobilization.              Nevertheless,
      the Department          recognizes        that more can be done to provide
      training     for individual            Reservists,          especially       for those junior
      and mid-level          enlisted      soldiers        with skills        for which wartime
      shortages      exist.         The Department's            Joint Task Group on Army
      Manpower and Mobilization/Training                        is addressing          this issue snd
      will    recommend policies             in this area by the Second Quarter of
      this Fiscal       Year.        Another reason for reduced training                      was that
      it was necessary            to reprogram Individual                Ready Reserve training
      funds to meet legally               mandated higher priority                 training      programs
      during FY 1989, such as officer                     basic courses.




              Pa@!29                                    GAO/NSIAD-90-55The Army'sIndividualReady Reserves
                                                                                                           Y




              Appendix I
              CommentsFrom the DepartmentofDefenee




-
                                                                                                5

    FINDZNG:         Individual       Rea.dv Re8ex-m T                                      Not
    PF                                                  The ~ofeseional
    development      education      was the A&y’s           first     priority        for Indlvidu-
    al Ready Reserve training              --not mobilization          readiness         training
    for Individual        Ready Reserve members needed In the first                            30 days
    of mobilization--because               it is required         for promotion          and because
    of the "up-or-out"          requirement        for officers.           The GAO learned
    that,    based on the Army projection                  of requirements           for filling
    shortages     In deploying        and stateside         support units--almost                70
    percent    of the Individual             Ready Reserve soldiers             needed in the
    early days of conflict            will     be in the lowest enlisted                 skill
    levels.      The GAO observed,            however, that nearly             50 percent        of the
    Individual      Ready Reserve soldiers              who received         training        in PY
    1988 were officers--i.e.,                16 percent of the total              Individual
    Ready Reserve received            approximately         50 percent         of all the train-
    ing.     The GAO also pointed             out that,     of those Individual                Ready
    Reserve soldiers         who received        training,        many were not required
    for the first        30 days of mobilization.
    The GAO also calculated      that more than $14 million              (26 percent)
    of the funds provided     for Individual        Ready Reserve mobilization
    training     in FY 1988 was spent on nontraining           activities.       Accord-
    ing to the GAO, these activities          include     support     for marksmanship
    competitions     and the Service   liaison      officer    to the United States
    Military     Academy, West Point.
    In addition,        the GAO found that,       although   most Individual       Ready
    Reserve soldiers         received   no training      at all,    others were given
    multiple     training      tours in the same year.           The GAO noted that,       in
    FY 1988, 16 percent of all officers                and 11 percent       of all enlist-
    ed training       tours   were given to Individual          Ready Reserve soldiers
    who already       had et least one tour that year.              The GAO pointed       out
    these figures         do not include   the programs that the Army Reserve
    Personnel      Center identified      as requiring      multiple      tours.
    DOD Resnonsg:         Partially   Concur.       The Department considers           Indi-
    vidual     Ready Reserve wartime         requirements     in allocating        its
    limited     training     funds.   Officer      and non-commissioned        officer
    professional        development   training      required    for promotion        and
    retention,       support of Active       component/Reserve      component unit
    training,       and support of legally         mandated programs,       all support
    Individual       Ready Reserve training         for wartime requirements.
    Individual     Ready Reserve training,         in conjunction      with support to
    Army    staff,  exercises,      site support for the Active          component and
    Reserve component training,           accounted   for the bulk of the
    $14 million.       Professional      development    education     does focus on
    wartime requirements        because it is training         designed to enhance
    Individual     Ready Reserve members' mobilization             readiness.     The
    Department     agrees, however, that prioritization             of professional
    development     education     is required.




              Page30                                  GAO/NSLAD-90-66TheArmy’sIndividualReady             Reserves
..-._._
      -_--_--_~~_                                                                                                                       -
                                   Appendix I
                                   Comments From the Department          of Defense




                                                                                                                               6


                          FINDING F: The Armv Lacks fogIn rm I n
                          Needs And Has Not Adeauatelv                Defined Training           Priorities      . The
                          GAO observed that,          in the FY 1990 Defense Guidance,                     the DOD
                          directed     the Services       to (1) determine          Individual          Ready Reserve
                          skill    decay and the most appropriate                timing      of refresher         training
                          and (2) begin refresher             training     no later      than FY 1988.            The GAO
                          found, however, that over the last three fiscal                           years,     the Army
                          has made little        progress       in making the required              determinations.
                          The GAO concluded         that the Army currently              still      does not know (1)
                          which skills      require     refresher       training      or (2) the required
                          frequency      of refresher       training.        The GAO further            concluded      that
                          the Army, therefore,          cannot focus refresher               training        on those
                          skills    most in need of it.
                          The GAO also pointed       out that,     in FY 1987, the Army contracted
                          for a study of the task retention            and refresher    training,    re-
                          quirements    of the Individual      Ready Reserve.        The GAO observed
                          that study has experienced         serious    methodological     problems--which
                          have made its results       highly   questionable.        The GAO noted, howev-
                          er, that despite      these problems,      the Army continues        to support
                          data collection     for the study.
                          The GAO also found that,     although    the headquarters       Office    of the
                          Army Deputy  Chief of Staff      for Operations     and Plans developed          a
                          model for prioritizing   training     of Individual       Ready Reserve
                          members needed in the earliest       days of mobilization,          it is not
                          being used to determine    which soldiers       to train.     According       to
                          the GAO, Army Reserve Personnel       Center officials       attribute      this
                          to a lack of guidance on how to apply the priorities                to training
                          decisions.
                          DOD Resoonsn:             Concur.        Although      there are identifiable                   skill
                          retention       factors       for military          occupational          skills,       skill
                          retention       is also dependent on the capability,                           experience,            and
                          vocation       of the individual.                Many civilian          occupation          skills
                          parallel       military       skills.         Individual      Ready Reserve members in
                          such occupations             should require           only limited         military         unique
                          refresher       training        when they report           to their        unit.        The Depart-
                          ment recognizes            that measuring skill              retention         is an imprecise
                          and complicated            activity.         It is expensive            and doesn't           always
                          result     in standard          factors      which can be translated                  Into training
                          time and dollars.               The Department continues                 to support the poll-
                          ciea outlined           in the Defense Guidance.                   Training        priorities          must
                          support      the national           strategy      which, of necessity,                puts     greater
                          emphasis on training                the Active        and Selected         Reserve components.
                          Individual        Ready Reserve training                 should be focused on sustaining
                          the Individual            Ready Reserve leadership                 pool and on critical
                          skills     needed for wartime.                  The Office       of the Secretary              of
                          Defense will          continue        to work with the Army, within                     the framework
                          of the Joint Task Group, to determine                          the appropriate              methodology
                          and strategy          for solving         the refresher          training         problem.

                                                                         * * * * *
                    -   _.-._-...-~-



                                  l%gr:31                                     GAO/NSIAD-90-55       The   Army's Individual Ready Reserves
                        Appendix   I
                       CommentsFrom the Department        of Defense




                                                                                                            7

                                                       RECOMMENDATIONS
                 RECOMMENDATION:       The GAO recommended that the Secretary     of the
                 Army assess the risk associated      with depending on the Individual
                 Ready Reserve to fill    early mobilization    requirements.
                 DOD ReSDOnSQ : Concur.            The Department of Defense has determined
                 that there are no viable           alternatives        to use of the Individual
                 Ready Reserve to meet wartime requirements.                    Except for retiree8
                 and a small Standby Reserve, the Individual                   Ready Reserve is the
                 only trained       manpower pool available.              The Department,     the Admin-
                 istration      and the Congress cooperated             in the recent extension          of
                 the military       service   obligation       from 6 years to 8 years,          specifi-
                 cally     for the purpose of increasing             the size of the Individual
                 Reedy Reserve to provide           a larger      pretrained    mangower pool.         The
                 Office      of the Secretary      of Defense will         work with the Army to
                 refine      the process for assessment of the risks               associated     with
                 dependency on the Individual             Ready Reserve when making decisions
                 on how best to meet potential             wartime manpower requirements,
                 which assessment is expected to be completed by the end of
                 FY 1990.
                 RECOMMENDATION2: The GAO recommended that the Secretary           of the
                 Army decide whether the benefits realized     from the Individual
                 Ready Reserve training program warrant    its continuation.
                 DOD Resoo se : Concur.                Training       is being conducted         based on
                 prioritiez        available       funding,      and personnel          resources.      Some
                 "Individuai       Ready Reserve" training,                 such as officer        basic cours-
                 es, must be accomplished                to meet statutory           requirements.        Indi-
                 vidual     Ready Reserve members volunteer                    to support exercises,
                 operational       training      requirements,            and annual training,         while
                 others volunteer          for individual          refresher       training     with active
                 component units,          all of which enhances total                  Army readiness.         The
                 recommendation         is moot, however.               It is the DOD position          that the
                 benefits      of sustaining         the Individual          Ready Reserve critical
                 skills,     including       leadership       skills,       derived     from the current
                 program, are sufficient               to warrant continuation              of the training
                 program.
                 RECOMMENDATION3: The GAO recommended that the                           Secretary   of the
                 Army terminate     data collection under the current                     Army skill
                 degradation    study.
See comment 2.   DOD Re&Donm     : Concur.   The data collection    portion   of the skill
                 degradation    study has been completed.      The Army is now only
                 awaiting    the compilation  of the study results,      which Is expected
                 to be completed by March 31, 1990.
                 RECOMMENDATION4: The GAO recommended that                          the Secretary      of the
                 Army make more effective            use of mobilization              training    funds by
                 establishing      overall     guidance and controls              directed     towards
                 ensuring     that available       training   funds are           focused on mobiliza-
                 tion requirements         with special     emphasis on           those Individual       Ready
                 Reserve members needed in the first              30 days           of mobilization.




                      Page 32                                 GAO/NSIAD-90-55    The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
       Appendix I
       Commentrr From the Department   of Defense




                                                                                   8

DOD Response:          Concur.     The Office  of the Secretary   of Defense
will    work with the Army to develop better          methods of focusing
the available        training    funds on refresher   training  for Individual
Ready Reserve members needed in the first             30 days of
mobilization.          The DOD Joint Task Group on Army Manpower
Mobilization/Training          is developing    thie guidance.    The
anticipated       completion     is the end of FY 1990.
RECOMMENDATION5: The GAO recommended that the Secretary               of the
Army make more effective  use of mobilization      training      funds by
determining the content  and frequency    of refresher      training
required.
DOD ReSDOnae: Concur.       The Office    of the Secretary      of Defense
and the Army are working jointly       to achieve this goal through
development  of a policy    statement    on the training     of the
Individual  Ready Reserve, to be followed        by publication     of a DOD
Directive.   This is one of the tasks of the DOD Joint Task Group
on Army Manpower Mobilization/Training         and Is expected to be
completed by the end of FY 1990.




       Page 33                             GAO/NSLAD-90-56   The Army’s   Individual Ready Reserves



                                             ‘.
               Appendix I
               Comments From the Department   of Defense




               The following are GAO'Scomments on the Department of Defense’s letter
               dated December 7, 1989.


               1. We have revised the report to recognize the Army’s system to provide
GAO Comments   post-mobilization training to Individual Ready Reservists.

               2. We have deleted this proposal from the report because DODsaid that
               data collection for the study had been completed.




                                                                                                               4




               Page 34                            GAO/NSIAD-90-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
+I$endix   II

Major Contributors to This Report


                        Charles Bonanno, Assistant Director
National Security and
International Affairs
Division, Washington,
D.C.

                        Ray Carroll, Regional Management Representative
Norfolk Regional        Janet Keller, Evaluator-in-Charge
Office                  Julie Chapman, Evaluator
                        Craig Hali, Evaluator
                        Sharon Reid, Program Analyst




                                                                                                                4




                        Page 36                     GAO/NSIADdO-55   The Army’s   Individual   Ready Reserves
Ortltw    IIIIIS( tw pwpaitl          by tastr or t)y t+hwk   or Inotwy   ortlw   rwtck
out t.0 t tie Sii~~t~ritilt~ritlt~ilt    of IhmInwi~ts.