H

Questions Posed to Panels at Site Visits

Questions Sent to the Site Office for Discussion at a Meeting with the Committee

1. What is the site office organization?

2. What are the basic roles of the major officers within the site office?

3. Who at the laboratory reports to whom at the site office? What information (inputs) does the site office get from laboratory management? To whom (within NNSA) does the site office report?

4. What determinations are made within the site office, and which are passed to NNSA HQ? What are the reporting chains?

5. What, specifically, does the site office do to carry out the maintenance of the stockpile? What decisions does the site manager get involved in? What work does the laboratory management have to put in to handle requirements from the site manager? How often does the site manager meet with laboratory personnel and on what topics? What are the annual information requirements of the site manager?

6. What is the site office role in management decisions? Does it make fee recommendations to the NNSA Principal Deputy Administrator? Do the laboratory and contractor officers report to the site office? How does the contractor Board of Directors interact with the Site office? What control does NNSA HQ have over the site office?

7. What role does the site office plays in determining the budget submission for the laboratory. Does the site office play an active role in setting strategy and determining financial resource needs? Or does it play a role as a reviewer?

8. How much of the site office role in the review process is devoted to mission performance, and how much to operational issues (e.g., safety and security)? How does the site office develop the performance evaluation plan? To what extent does the site office evaluate S&E quality? What kind of a role do they play in setting and implementing management policy to ensure high quality S&E; e.g., recruitment and retention of highly qualified scientists and engineers? Is it advisory, directive, consultative, just what? Does the site office exercise any direct leverage on providing incentives to improve quality?

9. What does the contract manager gets involved with, including which management decisions (if any)? What inputs does the contract manager need from the laboratory management? How much work or data gathering is involved, what times of the year, etc.? Does the contract manager work generally with laboratory director and staff, the CFO, or who?

10. The site office is an NNSA office. To what extent is the site office involved in management and evaluations of the labs’ Work for Others (WFO)?

Questions Sent to Laboratory Senior Management for Discussion at a Meeting with the Committee

1. We interpret quality science and engineering as being that S&E that is necessary to support the mission of the laboratory both now and in the future. What is XXX laboratory’s current mission and possible future missions? As part of your discussion please present to us the high-level description of you mission that you present to Congress. Could you walk us through your budget at a high level, in terms of both money and people?



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H Questions Posed to Panels at Site Visits Questions Sent to the Site Office for Discussion at a Meeting with the Committee 1. What is the site office organization? 2. What are the basic roles of the major officers within the site office? 3. Who at the laboratory reports to whom at the site office? What information (inputs) does the site office get from laboratory management? To whom (within NNSA) does the site office report? 4. What determinations are made within the site office, and which are passed to NNSA HQ? What are the reporting chains? 5. What, specifically, does the site office do to carry out the maintenance of the stockpile? What decisions does the site manager get involved in? What work does the laboratory management have to put in to handle requirements from the site manager? How often does the site manager meet with laboratory personnel and on what topics? What are the annual information requirements of the site manager? 6. What is the site office role in management decisions? Does it make fee recommendations to the NNSA Principal Deputy Administrator? Do the laboratory and contractor officers report to the site office? How does the contractor Board of Directors interact with the Site office? What control does NNSA HQ have over the site office? 7. What role does the site office plays in determining the budget submission for the laboratory. Does the site office play an active role in setting strategy and determining financial resource needs? Or does it play a role as a reviewer? 8. How much of the site office role in the review process is devoted to mission performance, and how much to operational issues (e.g., safety and security)? How does the site office develop the performance evaluation plan? To what extent does the site office evaluate S&E quality? What kind of a role do they play in setting and implementing management policy to ensure high quality S&E; e.g., recruitment and retention of highly qualified scientists and engineers? Is it advisory, directive, consultative, just what? Does the site office exercise any direct leverage on providing incentives to improve quality? 9. What does the contract manager gets involved with, including which management decisions (if any)? What inputs does the contract manager need from the laboratory management? How much work or data gathering is involved, what times of the year, etc.? Does the contract manager work generally with laboratory director and staff, the CFO, or who? 10. The site office is an NNSA office. To what extent is the site office involved in management and evaluations of the labs’ Work for Others (WFO)? Questions Sent to Laboratory Senior Management for Discussion at a Meeting with the Committee 1. We interpret quality science and engineering as being that S&E that is necessary to support the mission of the laboratory both now and in the future. What is XXX laboratory’s current mission and possible future missions? As part of your discussion please present to us the high-level description of you mission that you present to Congress. Could you walk us through your budget at a high level, in terms of both money and people? 86

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2. How do you and your laboratory review and assess the quality of S&E activities? Do you use the same processes and standards for in-house work, for LDRD work, for WFO? Does the NNSA review the quality of the S&E work? 3. How does the NNSA evaluate and oversee your laboratory? What motivation is provided by the performance fee? In your self-evaluation, what level of attention is paid to operations vis-à-vis the quality of S&E performance? 4. In the last decade the laboratories have been buffeted by many dramatic events. Could you describe how events such as (i) End of the Cold War, (ii) Formation of NNSA, (iii) stockpile stewardship, (iv) Contract recompetition, (v) START treaty have affected your laboratory and the morale of your staff? 5. It has been asserted by some that the laboratories have lost flexibility in how they execute programs. If this is so, what flexibility do you retain? Is this an important issue for you in managing your laboratory? 6. How do you manage and support S&E foundations that support the strategic directions of the laboratory? Could you describe the “return on investment” in the short and long term from work performed in these foundational areas? What is the role of S&E in driving the future of your laboratory? How does the NNSA support and evaluate S&E foundations? 7. How do you draw upon experts and best practices at other laboratories as a part of continuous improvement? 8. How do you select work for others? Do you have a strategic plan for this activity? What do you see as the value of WFO? 9. One of the most important challenges for a laboratory is hiring the next generation of scientists and engineers. What are you doing to assure that your laboratory remains an attractive place to work? What are the impediments? 10. Please comment on the issue of trust with the NNSA with respect to performance evaluations. Does XXX laboratory’s apparent preference for simple numerical measures of performance reflect something about the level of trust? How would you like the NNSA to evaluate the quality of S&E at your laboratory? 11. Can you envision any changes within the control of Congress and NNSA that would allow you to be more effective in assuring the highest quality S&E at your laboratory? Questions Sent to Laboratory-Other Management for Discussion at a Meeting with the Committee 1. How do you review and assess the quality of S&E activities? Do you use the same processes and standards for in-house work, for LDRD work, for WFO? 2. It has been asserted by some that the laboratories have lost flexibility in how they execute programs. What flexibility do you retain? Is this an important issue for you in your management duties? 3. How do you manage and support S&E foundations that support the strategic directions of the laboratory? What is the role of S&E in driving the future in your own unit? 4. How do you select work for others? Do you have a strategic plan for this activity? What do you see as the value of WFO? 5. How do you draw upon experts and best practices at other laboratories as a part of continuous improvement? 6. One of the most important challenges for a laboratory is hiring the next generation of scientists and engineers. What are you doing to assure that your unit remains an attractive place to work? What are the impediments? 7. Please comment on the issue of trust across levels of management. 8. How do you think the scientists and engineers in your group would respond to a discussion about topics such as working conditions, opportunities for professional development, performance evaluation, rewards, and job security? 87

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Questions Sent to Laboratory Senior Scientists and Engineers for Discussion at a Meeting with the Committee 1. It has been asserted by some that the laboratories have lost flexibility in how they execute programs. What flexibility do you retain? 2. What is the role of S&E foundations in driving the future in your own unit? 3. How well is the laboratory doing in attracting and retaining high-quality scientists and engineers. What are the impediments? 4. How do you think colleagues in your unit would respond to the following questions? • How free am I to steer my own career? What constraints are placed on my choices? • What resources (equipment, support staff, information, etc.) are available to me to enable my performing at a high level of quality? • How much control do I have over my own time, both day-to-day and over longer terms? • How much time is provided for me to report my findings? For travel to relevant events? For other professional development, in-house and outside? • How is my competence and currency to be maintained? • How much overhead must I attend to (security and safety processes, internal paperwork, etc.)? • How is my performance measured in-house and by what metrics? How do those metrics map onto my understanding of S&E quality? • How are my achievements rewarded in-house? Do I have opportunities to gain external awards? • How secure is my position? My research area? Will management protect me? • Can I communicate freely and effectively with my technical and administrative management when I have ideas, problems, and when they have news that affects me? Are the chains of control clear? Do my managers have the flexibility to help me do good work? 88