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David Norquist Discusses DoD’s Financial Audit; $2.6B Saved

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Deputy Defense Secretary and 2020 Wash100 Award winner David Norquist said the departmentwide financial audit has helped the Pentagon identify better business practices, National Defense reported Thursday.

"No one wants to get audited, but if you want to improve, the most important step you can take is to start the audit,” he said Thursday at the Defense News Conference.

Norquist said the financial audit has identified “dormant accounts” that enabled the Department of Defense (DoD) to find approximately $2.6 billion in savings that could be redirected to other programs.

He noted that DoD closed out approximately 25 percent or 615 of the recommendations filed by auditors last year and that he expects the department to close about 20 percent by the end of fiscal year 2020 amid COVID-19 pandemic-related challenges.

Norquist said the Pentagon pays $180 million annually to accounting firms to field more than 1,400 auditors to look for cybersecurity and inventory issues across the service branches and the department.