29. Information Memorandum From the Deputy Under Secretary of State for Administration (Crockett) to Secretary of State Rusk1


  • O” Area Reorganization2

As you will recall, last December you approved the assignment of Dwight Porter as Ambassador to Lebanon, and the abolition of the position of Assistant Secretary for Administration.

Upon approval of this recommendation, I initiated a number of studies to analyze the present practices of the administrative area of the Department and to recommend new approaches to our organization and operations in light of the abolition of the Office of the Assistant Secretary.

I am now transmitting to you a paper3 which outlines a new approach to the Department’s administrative efforts. I understand that I will have the opportunity to brief you, Mr. Ball, and Mr. Mann orally on Saturday, March 13.4

The first section of the paper describes the major objectives we intend to achieve in the new organization. The first objective is to institute a new management technique called “Management by Objective.” In very superficial terms this method will enable me to establish certain operational targets to be met by each of the operating areas, together with a system of reporting and monitoring established to measure progress of operators in meeting their targets.

Other objectives are new to governmental administration. We have separated planning from operations, and deliberately structured the organization to produce competition in the planning phase and to eliminate competition in the operational activities.

We have also consolidated all of the service functions of the “A” area5 in order to make greater use of “assembly line” techniques and to [Page 65] further mechanization. This concept will also increase accountability since a single officer will now be solely responsible for one rational grouping of similar functions.

We have stressed elimination of supervisory layers both to reduce costs and to increase responsiveness (and incidentally will be able to abolish about 250 to 300 positions in the “A” area alone).

We have elevated the personnel and budget functions to a higher level in the organization-to a level immediately responsive to me—in order to give them appropriate status and permit greater control by the Department’s leadership.

The second section of the paper deals with the details of the new organization. Briefly, “O” would be composed of 9 major units (compared with today’s 16) as follows:

Current: (with no changes at present)

Bureau of Security and Consular Affairs
Office of Protocol
Office of Communications
Office of Security


Office of the Director General (operation of foreign affairs personnel system and Department’s own personnel program)
Office of Budget and Compliance (budget preparation, and monitoring Departmental operations to insure conformity with stated policies and guidelines)
Policy and Plans Staff (development of administrative goals and policies and long-range plans to utilize technological innovations)
Office of Operations and Services (routine administrative services)
Community Advisory Services (improvement of Foreign Service image in U.S.)

The third section discusses the functions we propose to assign to the Regional Bureaus. These shifts are again designed to reduce the number of decision points required in carrying out a function. The activities included are those that I believe should be under the control of the assistant secretaries to increase their management flexibilities and to achieve a cadre of personnel with deep regional knowledge and expertise.

The fourth and final section deals with personnel administration and will probably be the main subject of conversation Saturday. As you know, at the same time we have also been developing proposals for a single, integrated and unified foreign affairs personnel system. Our Foreign Service Act amendments are intended to give this new system the appropriate legislative basis. This section of the paper outlines the [Page 66] philosophy behind this new and expanded personnel system and an organizational concept to put it in operation.6

The basic objectives for the new personnel system and organization are:

Creation of a single, integrated and unified foreign affairs personnel system, operating under the general policy direction of the Secretary of State, sufficiently broad to meet the needs of all foreign affairs agencies.
Participation by all user agencies in policy development through membership on the Board of the Foreign Service.
Consolidation of common personnel functions under the Director General who would operate the system to provide the manpower requirements of all participating foreign affairs agencies-a Foreign Service of the United States.
Recognition and support of the separate missions and special needs of operating agencies (including regional bureaus and Washington offices) through delegation of maximum authority over utilization of personnel to operating agencies, within broadly stated career plans for each officer.
Improved personnel management in participating agencies by the development and installation of an effective manpower planning and utilization system designed to balance individual interests and skills with current needs of the operating agencies and the long-range interests of the United States.

  1. Source: Kennedy Library, Crockett Papers, MS 75–45, Lot 68 D 323. No classification marking.
  2. The “O” area refers to the Office of the Deputy Under Secretary for Administration.
  3. Attached but not printed.
  4. Crockett did not meet with Rusk on March 13, but he may have briefed Rusk and Mann during a meeting the three men had in Rusk’s office on Tuesday morning, March 16. (Johnson Library, Rusk Appointment Book)
  5. The “A” area refers to the Bureau of Administration, which was abolished together with the position of its head, the Assistant Secretary of State for Administration.
  6. In a memorandum to Rusk, March 25, requested by Rusk “during our meeting last week,” Crockett compared “the present personnel system with the proposed one,” highlighting “some potential benefits that other Departments might derive from the new system.” (Kennedy Library, Crockett Papers, MS 74–28, Secretary, Jan-June 1965)