Publicly released: December 17, 2019
The objective of the audit was to determine whether the DoD developed training, mentoring, and contractor logistics support requirements for the National Maintenance Strategy-Ground Vehicle Support (NMS-GVS) contract that meets the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) needs for maintaining and sustaining its vehicles.
The NMS-GVS contract is a key aspect of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Coalition’s Resolute Support mission to train, advise, and assist the ANDSF to perform vehicle maintenance and help the ANDSF achieve self-sufficiency. The Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan (CSTC-A) developed the requirements for the NMS-GVS contract.
From December 2010 through May 2017, prior to the NMS-GVS contract, the Army procured vehicles, equipment maintenance, and training for the ANDSF using three consolidated Afghanistan-Technical Equipment Maintenance Program (A-TEMP) contracts. Although the A-TEMP contracts increased the ANDSF competency in performing vehicle and equipment maintenance, the ANDSF was not self-sufficient in maintaining its vehicles and equipment and relied heavily on contractor logistics support. In addition, the A-TEMP contracts lacked adequate contract oversight, accurate performance metrics, supervisory development, and ANDSF participation. CSTC‑A captured identified deficiencies and combined all of the requirements into one contract based on the lessons learned from the A-TEMP contracts.
On May 23, 2017, U.S. Army Contracting Command-Warren (ACC-Warren) awarded the NMS-GVS contract, valued at $451.9 million, for the base and four option years ending on August 30, 2022. ACC-Warren exercised the NMS-GVS contract base year, which ended on August 30, 2018, and the option year one period of performance, which ended on August 30, 2019.
The NMS-GVS contractor provides logistics support to maintain various classes of military vehicle (such as Mine Resistant Ambush Protected, High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, and other military vehicles) readiness. The ANDSF continues to train and develop the ability to independently conduct maintenance, quality control, and supply chain management.
To develop ANDSF self-sufficiency, the NMS-GVS contract requires the contractor to train the ANDSF to use specific software systems to track vehicle inventory, maintenance work orders, and vehicle supplies and parts. When CSTC-A officials established the NMS-GVS contract training and mentoring requirements, they gave the contractor flexibility in how it implemented and executed the training provided to the ANDSF. In addition, in the contract, CSTC-A officials established a work split requirement between the contractor and the ANDSF for completing maintenance work orders. For example, for the base year of the contract, CSTC-A established a 50-percent work split for vehicle maintenance and repairs between the contractor and the Afghan National Army. Additionally, CSTC-A established a 95-percent work split for the contractor and a 5-percent work split for the Afghan National Police.
CSTC-A developed requirements for the NMS-GVS contract that were not measurable and achievable. Specifically, CSTC-A did not:
• develop training and mentoring requirements that measured ANDSF trainees’ progression towards advanced levels of maintenance because CSTC-A used contractor-supported vehicle readiness rates to measure the training and mentoring success of the ANDSF rather than ANDSF’s work performance;
• develop achievable work split requirements for the ANDSF because CSTC-A established aggressive work splits for the NMS-GVS contract despite the ANDSF’s poor performance history and the ANDSF was not prepared to perform its assigned share of the work split; or
• provide the required Core software systems needed for the ANDSF to achieve vehicle accountability and maintain maintenance data when the NMS-GVS contract was awarded because CSTC-A relied on a separate contractor to develop the Core software systems.
As a result, CSTC-A developed requirements to maintain vehicles and train the ANDSF, and the Army awarded contract support valued at $2.2 billion since 2010 with no significant progress in the ANDSF’s ability to independently perform maintenance. The $2.2 billion in contractor support since 2010 includes the combined contract value of $1.2 billion from the three A-TEMP contracts and contract value as of September 2019 of $1 billion from the NMS-GVS contract. Based on the results of the NMS-GVS contract’s base year and first 4 months of option year one, the ANDSF will face challenges in becoming self-sufficient unless CSTC-A develops training and mentoring requirements that measure the ANDSF progression levels, establishes a reasonable work split requirement, and provides required software systems. Furthermore, if the ANDSF does not become self-sufficient by August 2022 due to a lack of training success, the DoD may have to continue to pay contractor support to train and perform vehicle maintenance and repairs for the ANDSF after the contract ends.
We recommend that the CSTC-A Commander:
• develop training and mentoring requirements that track and measure ANDSF capabilities throughout the training program;
• document and report the ANDSF’s progression towards the three levels of maintenance and separately record the vehicle maintenance and repairs completed by the ANDSF and the contractor;
• semiannually review the training and mentoring metrics for the contract requirements and document the results and modify the NMS-GVS contract training and mentoring requirements if necessary;
• semiannually review and document the ANDSF’s ability to meet the agreed-upon work split, then modify the contract requirement based on the work split review results;
• coordinate with the Afghanistan Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Interior to develop agreements (bilateral commitment letters or others) to reinforce ANDSF’s trainees attendance for the NMS-GVS training program; and
• develop and implement policies and procedures for planning and executing future service acquisitions to ensure that before awarding contracts, stated resources are available for the contractors to be able to meet contract requirements.
Management Comments and Our Response
The Deputy Commanding General agreed with the recommendation to develop training and mentoring requirements, document and report the ANDSF’s progression and record vehicle maintenance, and semiannually review the training and mentoring metrics for the contract requirements. CSTC-A stated that these recommendations have been in place since the award of the contract. However, comments from the Deputy Commanding General did not address the specifics of the recommendation, and we disagree that actions to address these three recommendations have been in place since the inception of the contract. The Trained Personnel Summary report only demonstrates trainee attendance and the number of trainees that graduated by location. It does not show the individual ANDSF trainee progression from performing routine maintenance to major vehicle repair and maintenance. We request that CSTC-A provide documentation that requirements have been developed in the contract that shows trainee progression through the three levels of vehicle repair and maintenance. Additionally, the Maintenance Reports do not show metrics of the ANDSF progression towards each of the three levels of maintenance. We also request that CSTC-A provide an analysis that shows the metrics of overall ANDSF progression towards higher levels of maintenance. Finally, the ongoing semiannual review is directed to contractor performance, rather than ANDSF progression. We request that CSTC-A include in the ongoing semiannual reviews an assessment of the training and mentoring metrics and provide documentation showing the results of the review and provide documentation of contract modification, if necessary.
The Deputy Commanding General agreed with the recommendation to semiannually review and document the ANDSF’s ability to meet the agreed-upon work split, stating that the semiannual review and documentation of the work split already occurs during the review process. Comments from the Deputy Commanding General addressed the specifics of the recommendation; therefore, the recommendation is resolved and closed.
The Deputy Commanding General disagreed with the recommendation to honor the bilateral commitment letters and stated that the bilateral commitment letters do not specifically require the Afghanistan Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Interior to recruit, retain, and maintain trainees for the NMS-GVS training program. Furthermore, the Office of Secretary Defense (Policy) Director of the Resource Policy and Requirements for Afghanistan stated on behalf of CSTC-A that the language in the bilateral commitment letters refers to U.S. sponsored training that occurs outside of Afghanistan and not for the NMS-GVS program. Based on management comments, we revised the recommendation to clarify the actions needed to reinforce ANDSF trainee attendance throughout the duration of the NMS-GVS training program. Comments from the Deputy Commanding General did not address the specifics of the revised recommendation; therefore, the recommendation is unresolved. We request that the Deputy Commanding General provide comments on the final report that addresses how CSTC-A will reinforce ANDSF trainee attendance. We request CSTC-A provide comments to the final report on the revised recommendation by January 13, 2020.
The Deputy Commanding General agreed with the recommendation to develop and implement policies and procedures for planning and executing future service acquisitions, stating that CSTC-A has multiple process policies to synchronize necessary external resources to ensure the NMS-GVS contractor will have all the resources necessary to meet the requirements of the contract. Comments from the Deputy Commanding General addressed the specifics of the recommendation; therefore, the recommendation is resolved but will remain open. We will close the recommendation once we receive and review the newly implemented policies.
This report is the product of Proj. No. D2018-D000RG-0170.000