The nature and magnitude of differences between intrinsic and operational reliability and maintainability characteristics are presented. Relative supplier and user responsibility is cited. The difficulty is justifying increased reliability and maintainability is illustrated by means of hypothetical equipment selection and direct mutual dependence of reliability and maintainability is demonstrated. A suggested approach to the reconciliation of intrinsic and operational values consists on recognition of mutual responsibilities of supplier and user, development of a clear conditional frame of reference for intrinsic claims, user, development of a clear conditional frame of reference for intrinsic claims, and application of more effective operational management controls. Data bank requirements for this approach are also established.