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here_2_help

The Problem is the People, Not the Rules

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"Throwing more money at the problem isn’t the answer and, in fact, may be a contributor to the problem. Require internal change through a clearer, straighter path on the acquisition highway; not more expensive pavement on today’s circuitous road."

https://www.federaltimes.com/opinions/2018/01/02/yes-it-can-be-done-expediting-defense-acquisition/

 

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Guest Vern Edwards
12 hours ago, here_2_help said:

Require internal change through a clearer, straighter path on the acquisition highway; not more expensive pavement on today’s circuitous road.

Gobbledygook. What's with the metaphors? Write plainly or don't write. The author resorted to rmetaphor so he wouldn't offend anyone.

If DOD wants to speed things up it should immediately suspend most of Undersecretary Lord's functions, eliminate her staff and its issuances, and prepare the military services for the abolition of her office (Defense AT&L) by selecting knowledgeable and competent young people to take charge of field acquisition personnel.

DOD has said it will take two years to reorganize AT&L. It took the U.S. 14 months to plan and complete the Guadalcanal Campaign after the attack on Pearl Harbor and less than a year to defeat Nazi Germany after D-Day. I guess DOD expects the bureaucratic resistance to change to be worse than the Japanese and German resistance to defeat. 

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The time spent from RFP up to award...should be done in in less than 60 days, if not 30, which is still not aggressive enough.

Has Mr. Fischetti read FAR Subpart 5.2 recently?  Assuming the requirement is non-commercial, there is a minimum 15 day synopsis period and then a minimum 30 or 45 day solicitation period.  How is it reasonable to expect an RFP to award timeline of 60 days or less with those requirements (constraints)?

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Guest Vern Edwards
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The time spent from RFP up to award in 12 months or less is not a very high bar at all. In fact, this part of the acquisition process should be done in in less than 60 days, if not 30, which is still not aggressive enough.

Matthew:

Sixty days "from RFP up to award" was a ridiculous thing to say. It would have made more sense to say 60 days from receipt of proposals to award, though even that would be very tough in light of agency post-selection-decision administrative processing bureaucracy.

The real problem, however, is with Undersecretary Lord's absurd 50 percent goal.  This is from her testimony at the SASC:

Quote

Having reviewed data measuring the typical lead time following validation of a warfighter requirement until awarding the resulting major weapon systems contract, I've concluded that we have the ability to reduce this procurement lead time by as much as 50 percent; significantly reducing our costs while accelerating our timelines for fielding major capability.

See also: https://www.defensenews.com/pentagon/2017/12/08/heres-how-ellen-lord-will-reduce-acquisition-time-by-50-percent/

What did she mean by "procurement lead time"? That testimony was nothing more than typical political-appointment-nominee nonsense. I wonder if any of the Senators asked her to define her term. What did she include in "procurement lead time"? What parts of it was she going to cut? How?

Forget it, Matthew. Don't think about it any more. If you stay in DOD long enough you'll go through this kind of nonsense several times in your career. Ignore what appointees say. Just learn to do the job as best you can in the circumstances and teach others to do the same. Study your Orwell: "Politics and the English Language." It's the truest thing you'll ever read. Study it. Get the small paperback version and carry it with you everywhere. Read in it every chance you get.

https://faculty.washington.edu/rsoder/EDLPS579/HonorsOrwellPoliticsEnglishLanguage.pdf

Undersecretary Lord's testimony was political language, and:

Quote

Political language — and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists — is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. 

The sad thing is that she probably meant what she said, though she probably didn't know what she meant.

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