Customer contact

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Responding to unique contracting challenges, DOD has made a major strategic change in contingency contracting administration services to support U.S. forces in Africa—from the fight against the Lord’s Resistance Army and Joseph Kony to the Ebola outbreak—that makes it easier to get needed services and supplies to the customer, much more rapidly. By Maj. Justin L. De Armond Africa is an extremely challenging environment that requires contracting officials know their craft and be able to understand and adapt to each customer’s requirements. This is especially true for those in the noncommissioned officer (NCO) 51C acquisition military occupational specialty. The 51C’s roles and responsibilities encompass contract administration, employing different contracting actions […]

$18M in new contracts help ensure Army retains a critical skill base at Watervliet

$18M in new contracts help ensure Army retains a critical skill base at Watervliet

By Mr. Ben Sherman The Arsenal announced this week that it received five contracts worth more than $18 million that will help ensure that the Army’s arsenal at Watervliet, N.Y., retains a warm base of critical skills to support the future needs of our war fighters. These new orders add to the more than $60 million in contracts the Arsenal had received earlier this year for work that for the most part will be performed in fiscal years 2016 through 2018, said Bill Dingmon, the Arsenal’s chief of manufacturing. The contracts will provide various weapon system components for the U.S. Army’s TACOM Life Cycle Management Command. The five contracts require […]

US Army contracting team trains local institutions in Kosovo

US Army contracting team trains local institutions in Kosovo

By Mr. David Chace U.S. Army Soldiers with the 1960th Contingency Contracting Team out of Huntsville Ala., and currently assigned to Area Support Team-Balkans in Kosovo, marked the completion of a five-day training series on market management and technical specifications, for approximately 20 members and officials from Ministry of Kosovo Security Force and their Land Forces Command, during a ceremony Aug. 14 in Pristina, Kosovo. U.S. Army Master Sgt. Lesly Richardson, one of the instructors of the training, said the training’s value exceeded her expectations. “They had a lot of questions, and that made the training much more energetic,” Richardson said. “There was a good exchange of information.” AST-Balkans serves […]

Finding Closure

Finding Closure

Rock Island contract closeout team returns more than $320 million to customers, capturing lessons learned from 13 years of contracting in Southwest Asia. By Mr. Jake Adrian and Ms. Andrea Kalb On a daily basis, the Reachback Contract Closeout Team is effectively closing chapter after chapter of the long story that comprises the past 13 years of war in Southwest Asia. This team, located at Army Contracting Command – Rock Island, IL (ACC-RI), a subordinate organization of U.S. Army Materiel Command’s Army Contracting Command created in 2010 to process and close out approximately 220,000 fixed-price contracts awarded in Iraq and Afghanistan, has removed more than $321 million and counting from contracts to […]

What We Learned

What We Learned

Lessons learned in expeditionary contracting have vastly improved the capabilities and professionalism of the contingency contracting workforce By BG James E. Simpson In the past decade, it has been an honor and a privilege for me to serve alongside great acquisition professionals who deployed time and time again to two vastly different theaters. Their deployments were a call to arms—not with weapons, but with pens and two books we fondly refer to as our contracting bibles, the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and the Defense FAR Supplement (DFARS). I must thank our sons and daughters in the acquisition workforce, both civilian and military, who deployed to support our warfighters. I also […]

USAASC announces MOS 51C reclassification board results

USAASC announces MOS 51C reclassification board results

  By Tara Clements FORT BELVOIR, Va. – The 51C noncommissioned officer (NCO) reclassification board held here and concluded early December selected 10 candidates for reclassification. This board was the first of the fiscal year convened by the U.S. Army Acquisition Support Center (USAASC) and administered by the 51C Proponent Office. “We continue to receive a record number of applications, which ensures competition and that the best qualified Soldiers are selected for reclassification,” said Master Sgt. Eric Sears, chief 51C Proponent NCO. Sears noted that the high level of competition during this board resulted in a seven percent selection rate. The purpose of the board is to ensure that the […]

Many tasks, one tool

Many tasks, one tool

PM CCS seeks maximum efficiency, affordability with consolidated contractor logistics support by Mr. Raymond W. Chin and Col. Richard J. Hornstein As materiel developers, acquisition program executive officers (PEOs) and project managers (PMs) must consider all aspects of doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership, personnel and facilities (DOTMLPF) before the Army enterprise can fully institutionalize a capability. Over the past 12-plus years of combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army has successfully developed materiel solutions and pushed them out to the force, using agile acquisition processes to meet the needs of combatant commanders. However, the full set of DOTMLPF considerations often failed to align with the deployment of the “M”—materiel—and […]

Clause For Effect

Clause For Effect

ARDEC and JMC aim to simplify procurement and reduce cost of conventional ammo with new contract clause   By Mr. Steve Stark   The U.S. Army Armament, Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) and the Joint Munitions Command (JMC) in the next few months will begin a pilot of a contract clause that should allow for a uniform, integrated approach to help conventional ammunition suppliers comply with acceptance inspection equipment (AIE) requirements while encouraging them to follow commercial best practices. “Inspection is essential to any manufacturing system. It’s the means of identifying and rejecting nonconformities, thus ensuring that only conforming product gets to the warfighter,” said Jennifer Herrera, a quality […]

Continuous process improvement coming to your nearest ACC field office

Continuous process improvement coming to your nearest ACC field office

By Ms. Dawn M. Scott   The Army Contracting Command (ACC) has established a continuous process improvement (CPI) team in its Operations Group that will assist with the implementation of initiatives throughout the command. “The goal of the CPI program is to document, analyze and improve all of our processes, measure our success along the way and to take the organization to increasingly higher levels of performance. High-performing organizations improve employee morale and customer satisfaction,” said J.R. Richardson, ACC Operations Group director. “I have established very effective Lean Six Sigma programs at other organizations, and I can attest to the great things that CPI programs can do for organizations.” Lean […]

‘FOCUSING ON SOLUTIONS’

‘FOCUSING ON SOLUTIONS’

An interview with Mr. Charlie E. Williams Jr., outgoing director, Defense Contract Management Agency   Mr. Charlie E. Williams Jr. was director of the Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) from May 2008 until his retirement on Dec. 3, 2013. In that capacity, he led a DOD agency of more than 10,600 civilians and military personnel who execute worldwide contract management responsibilities, covering more than 19,800 contractors and more than $236 billion in unliquidated obligations. This Q&A was originally published in the Fall 2013 edition of ACC Today magazine (http://www.acc.army.mil/news/today/). Q. How does the Defense Contract Management Agency mission support the Soldier in the field? A. Our mission is to ensure […]