Why Work at GAO

When We Talk Others Listen

GAO is at the epicenter of government decision making.  Our employees are on the front lines of congressional oversight work, assigned to jobs that make a real difference for our country and its citizens.

GAO officials typically testify before Congress over 200 times a year and are cited regularly in the national press. Importantly, GAO’s work gets results. Annually, our recommendations lead to hundreds of actions, including legislation, that improve government services to retirees, students, veterans, and others. GAO also provides an excellent return on investment, documenting tens of billions of dollars in financial benefits each year.

Read about GAO making news.

View a video that tells the GAO story through television news coverage.

Our Work Takes Us Everywhere

GAO’s work covers whatever the U.S. government has done, is doing, or is thinking about doing anywhere in the world. Our work spans the entire federal government, including national defense, international affairs, energy, education, the environment, health care, homeland security, transportation, financial management, and information technology. To address complex issues, GAO also partners with other federal agencies, state and local governments, and foreign audit institutions. We go anywhere the work takes us, throughout the United States and around the world.

Our Organization Is People Driven

GAO has around 3,200 employees, two-thirds of whom work at our headquarters in downtown Washington, D.C. GAO also maintains 11 offices in cities across the country, including San Francisco, Atlanta, Boston, and Chicago.

Like any professional services organization, GAO is only as good as the knowledge, skills, and abilities of its workforce. GAO analysts, auditors, economists, lawyers, and other professionals work to increase transparency and improve the economy, efficiency, and effectiveness of the federal government.

We make it a priority to recruit top graduates, men and women who are committed to the ideals of good government. More than half of our staff have doctoral or master’s degrees from leading universities in such areas as public administration, public policy, law, business, computer science, accounting, economics, and the social sciences.

Recognizing the importance of its people, GAO has created a progressive work environment. Our staff has a strong voice in our operations and management. We are also leaders in

  1. helping employees balance work and personal lives through flexible work schedules and on-site services,
  2. investing in employees’ continuous learning and improvement through training and mentoring programs, and
  3. rewarding high-performing individuals through a pay-for-performance system and incentive awards.