Reengineering Organizations:

Results of a GAO Symposium

NSIAD-95-34: Published: Dec 13, 1994. Publicly Released: Dec 13, 1994.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the framework for reorganizing the Department of Defense's (DOD) business practices, focusing on the results of a GAO symposium on private-sector reengineering practices.

GAO noted that: (1) five principles for effective reengineering emerged from the GAO-sponsored symposium; (2) while these principles are not intended to be an all-inclusive list on how to effectively implement reengineering, they form the basis of a framework for bringing about the radical change required to reengineer business processes in a large organization; (3) the principles reflect the panel members' views, which are not necessarily those of GAO; and (4) the five principles are: (a) top management must be supportive of and engaged in reengineering efforts to remove barriers and drive success; (b) an organization's culture must be receptive to reengineering goals and principles; (c) major improvements and savings are realized by focusing on the business from a process rather than a functional perspective; (d) processes should be selected for reengineering based on a clear notion of customer needs, anticipated benefits, and potential for success; and (e) process owners should manage reengineering projects with teams that are cross-functional, maintain a proper scope, focus on customer metrics, and enforce implementation timelines.

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