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Acquisition

The Navy Must Sustain Its Force for the Long Term

May 10, 2011
By Robert K. Ackerman

Ships and submarines being built by the U.S. Navy today will be in service 40 to 50 years from now, according to the commander of the U.S. Fleet Forces Command. Adm. John T. Harvey, USN, explained that the Navy cannot afford to re-procure its fleet, so it must ensure that its platforms last for several decades.

Social Solutions to Coast Guard Acquisition Strategy

April 29, 2011
By Rachel Eisenhower

As the U.S. Coast Guard examines new ways to consolidate its logistics systems into a single business model, it is using social media platforms to open a dialogue with government and industry.

Incoming: No More 8-Tracks

February 2, 2011
By H. Mosher

This month, Capt. Joseph A. Grace Jr., USN (Ret.) likens the state of government technology to that of an 8-track tape player--"now DIACAP-certified, ruggedized, encrypted and able to be thrown out of the car window at 60 miles per hour unharmed"--in an iPod world, thanks to a bloated procurement process.

Change Is Afoot in Defense IT Procurement-Maybe

January 27, 2011
By Robert K. Ackerman

If people want changes in the way the Defense Department procures and manages information technology (IT), then it may be time for them to put their money where their mouths are. The department is proposing sweeping reforms that will revolutionize every aspect of IT procurement and management. If successful, these reforms conceivably could address all of the IT acquisition complaints that have been echoing across the department. All this effort needs is a buy-in from all of the players. Elizabeth A. McGrath, Defense Department deputy chief management officer, and David Wennergren, Defense Department assistant deputy chief management officer, described to a luncheon audience how their office's proposed new approach to IT procurement would be a "radical change" across the board. Calling it an IT consolidation road map, the two officials said the changed approach would place an emphasis on transparency both to improve performance management as well as build trust. McGrath explained, "We are looking to break down the existing process for IT procurement to have more modular, faster delivery of these capabilities." She added that currently, "we're not hitting the capabilities in the first five years." These vast changes proposed by the office will require all participants to do their part, or the effort will fall short. "It's a matter of choice," McGrath declared. "If we decide we won't, then we are detracting from the department's goals. "I'm not painting a picture of doom and gloom," she continued. "The opportunities are sitting right there in front of us."

Secret Intel Business, Part 2

June 24, 2010

At AFCEA International's Small Business Intelligence forum yesterday, experts revealed tips about how companies-large and small-can increase their business with member agencies of the intelligence community. But, yesterday's blog coverage was just too short to include all of the advice they shared, so here are a few more ideas.

Secrets of Doing Business With the Intelligence Community

June 23, 2010

The overwhelming feeling among small business owners and industry overall is that winning a contract with one of the three-lettered agencies is not worth the effort. But IC insiders say the opportunities are out there, and companies should be taking advantage of them.

Security and Accreditation Concerns Drive Discussion

May 19, 2010

Accreditation and certification of software is a vital, but time consuming process. On Tuesday afternoon, panelists at the AFCEA SOLUTIONS symposium discussed the challenge and ongoing attempts to streamline the process.

Today's Hot Topics: Interoperability and Acquisition, Coalition-Style

May 13, 2010
By Maryann Lawlor

The final panel of the 2010 Joint Warfighting Conference focused on two topics that have been discussed consistently for more than a decade: lack of interoperability and convoluted acquisition. Though the panelists agreed on the problems, their opinions about solutions differed slightly.

SATCOM Acquisition Moves Outside the Box

April 23, 2010
By Beverly Schaeffer

The mostly static federal bureaucracy can use an entrepreneurial FCSA shot to the arm-but will this new acquisition process just add more layers of red tape to a system trying to streamline? Will it work smoothly, or does the FCSA have too many kinks? How about other potential methods? Please share your ideas.

Experts Ponder Both Sides of Border Security

February 26, 2010

Managing the myriad programs designed to provide border security has proved challenging. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has launched a variety of technology efforts designed to enhance border security. Likewise, civilian firms are deeply involved with DHS in supporting these programs. Two panels running Wednesday examined the government and industry perspectives of coordinating border security.

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