Competition Meets Collaboration

Competition Meets Collaboration

Vendors share prototypes for weapon sights in a new mix-and-match approach to building interoperability into integrated Soldier systems for the best overall performance at the best overall price. by Maj. Nicholas Breen On a warm, dusty afternoon at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR), New Mexico, in May 2016, engineers from two competing vendors for the Family of Weapons Sights – Individual (FWS-I) program took the unusual step of swapping their prototypes and discussing the technical merits of each other’s approach to the program. This level of collaboration between competing vendors is highly unorthodox in the fiercely competitive world of defense procurement, yet it was the approach taken by BAE Systems […]

One ‘Peculiar’ Fellowship

One ‘Peculiar’ Fellowship

An Army acquisition officer assigned to a stint with Amazon sees firsthand where the consumer giant’s corporate values and those of the military merge and diverge. by Lt. Col. Steven D. Gutierrez How does it sound to hang up your military uniform, slip into something more casual, challenge convention and maybe even take your dog to work, all while immersing yourself in one of the world’s leading technology and innovation companies? That may sound too peculiar to be possible, but “peculiar” is exactly how Amazon.com Inc. likes to think of itself. The Amazon Military Talent Partnership group runs a portfolio of military fellowship programs to provide just that kind of […]

Interservice Integration

Interservice Integration

Construction contracting in Qatar provides a user-level view of acquisition reform, its possibilities and its challenges. by Maj. Michael J. Carroll and Capt. Sarah Lark Acquisition reform generally happens at echelons above reality for most of the Defense Acquisition Workforce. Successful reform is evident only when it begins to take root at levels below the contracting support brigade or below wing-level contracting. One of the most effective of these initiatives is the use of contracting vehicles to support multiple service component contracting offices. This integration can provide quick wins in terms of manpower and cost reduction. However, the process is not as straightforward or as simple as it might seem. […]

Faces of the Force: Barbara Whitney

Faces of the Force: Barbara Whitney

COMMAND/ORGANIZATION: U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center (HNC) TITLE: Contract specialist YEARS IN THE WORKFORCE: 4 YEARS OF MILITARY SERVICE: 21 DAWIA CERTIFICATIONS: Level I in contracting (expected December 2016) EDUCATION: B.S. in liberal studies with a concentration in acquisition and contract management, Athens State University; A.S. in child development, Copiah Lincoln Community College AWARDS: Headquarters U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Deputy Commander’s Coin (2); HNC Commander’s Coin (2); HNC Commander’s Certificate of Achievement (2); Army Commendation Medal (2); Army Achievement Medal (6); Army Good Conduct Medal (5)   ‘What I have been called to do’ By Susan L. Follett Although she’s a relative newcomer to Army acquisition with just […]

GROUND TRUTH

GROUND TRUTH

Piggybacks and workarounds: The Acquisition Lessons Learned Portal contains a wealth of information on new ways to use existing processes to get weapons to warfighters in less time. by Ms. Amanda Nappi The acquisition process can be a long and laborious journey for acquisition personnel and stakeholders involved in the development of a weapon system. With a plethora of required documentation, milestone requirements and validations needed from oversight councils, bureaucracy is slowing our ability to rapidly provide the warfighter with innovative weapon solutions. In addition to slowing our support to the warfighter, the lengthy process is costly to taxpayers and could cause our country to be overtaken by a more […]

Lab showcases futuristic resupply vehicle

Lab showcases futuristic resupply vehicle

By David McNally, ARL Public Affairs ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — The commanding general of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command met with Army Research Laboratory officials Sept. 8, 2016, at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. Acting ARL Director Dr. Philip Perconti briefed Maj. Gen. Cedric T. Wins about the lab’s science and technology initiatives on the general’s first visit since assuming command of RDECOM Aug. 9. Researchers and engineers showcased the Joint Tactical Aerial Resupply Vehicle, or JTARV. The rectangular-shaped quadcopter, also known as the hoverbike, has generated a lot of interest since Army researchers imagined a distant future where Soldiers order resupply and an unmanned aerial vehicle […]

Making Acquisition Rapid: A Practitioner’s View

Making  Acquisition Rapid: A Practitioner’s View

Acquisition is a slow process by nature; always has been, always will be. Or is it? Could the remedy be as simple as getting out of our own way? In Walt Kelly’s words: ‘We have met the enemy and he is us.’ by Lt. Col. Joel D. Babbitt In the world of acquisition and project management, cost, schedule and performance are king. Actually delivering a product that meets the needs—performance—in the agreed-upon timeframe—schedule—and with the resources you’ve been given—cost—is harder than it sounds and is doubly so within DOD. The challenges are formidable: A requirements process that takes two to four years. A money forecasting process that takes two to […]

New ECBC Research and Technology Director Driven by Desire to Contribute

New ECBC Research and Technology Director Driven by Desire to Contribute

By Richard Arndt, ECBC Public Affairs Officer ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (Sept. 8, 2016) – Although August 22 was the first time he walked into the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center as an employee, Eric L. Moore, Ph.D., was hardly a stranger. As a long time steward of the U.S. Chemical and Biological Defense Program, and former Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) Division Chief, Moore has had more than a decade’s worth of experience working with ECBC. Only now, his interaction is as a part of the organization rather than as a partner of the organization. “I really believe in my heart that this is the premier chemical and […]

Army Ground-Launched Missile hits 500 km-2027

Army Ground-Launched Missile hits 500 km-2027

The Emerging Ground-Fired LRPF Will Hit Targets at Ranges up to 500 Kilometers By Kris Osborn, Scout Warrior The Army is working to engineer a sleek, high-speed, first-of-its-kind long-range ground launched attack missile able to pinpoint and destroy enemy bunkers, helicopter staging areas, troop concentrations and other fixed-location targets from as much as three times the range of existing weapons, service officials said. The emerging Long Range Precision Fires, slated to be operational by 2027, is being designed to destroy targets at distances up to 500 kilometers. “The Long Range Precision Fires Missile will attack, neutralize, suppress and destroy targets using missile-delivered indirect precision fires. LRPF provides field artillery units […]

September 2016 Hot Topics

September 2016 Hot Topics

FROM THE ARMY DACM OFFICE There is less than ONE MONTH left for Army Acquisition Workforce (AAW) professionals to complete the requirement for 80 Continuous Learning Points (CLPs) in a two-year cycle. The deadline is Sept. 30. If you have any questions, please ask your supervisor or your Organizational Acquisition POC (OAP). The Army Director of Acquisition Career Management (DACM) Office is responsible for communicating compliance to the undersecretary for defense for acquisition, technology and logistics (USD(AT&L)). The purpose of this policy is to ensure that our acquisition professionals develop and stay current in leadership and functional acquisition skills that augment the minimum education, training and experience standards established for […]