The Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment (OUSD(A&S)) is changing the structure of acquisition culture. By simplifying policy, tailoring acquisition approaches and emphasizing sustainment, the Department is injecting innovation, creativity and critical thinking into the Federal acquisition process. The rewrite to the primary guidance on Defense acquisition, the Adaptive Acquisition Framework (AAF), streamlines the acquisition process so the Defense Acquisition Workforce can more quickly and efficiently deliver effective, suitable, sustainable and affordable solutions to the warfighter. It is an opportunity to empower program managers, conduct data-driven analysis and actively manage risk.
Ellen Lord, former Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment, and Joseph Kernan, former Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security, signed DoDI 5000.86 Acquisition Intelligence last fall. This instruction discerns the intelligence support activities needed to truly integrate intelligence support into the acquisition functionalities and documentations.
DAU's AAF webcast series recently highlighted the latest updates to the Acquisition Intelligence policy. During the webcast, a panel of experts guided participants through the newest instruction in policy and procedures for intelligence support in key acquisition documents and functions. The panel also discussed the difference between acquisition intelligence and mission intelligence, and challenged the initiatives used across the Services surrounding the coordination of threat representation.
Panel members and other stakeholders addressed intelligence requirements as they apply to certain acquisition documents and functional areas, including but not limited to Acquisition Strategy, Analysis of Alternatives (AoA), Capability Requirements Documents, and Life-cycle Mission Data Plan.
“Program documentation is utilized to feed knowledge sets so that acquisition intelligence professionals can have a say of what actual content goes into these documents,” DAU Professor of Program Management Maj. Butch Wood said. “This goes back to the acquisition strategy to ensure that the program that is being conceived of is formulated in a way that meets the threat where it’s at, the analysis of alternatives, determining what the materiel solutions are going to be and how it’s going to meet the threat — threat information that is fed into the AoA — making sure the materiel solution is reflective of the current known threat and the threat of the future.”
As the policy summarizes, acquisition programs must use relevant information produced by the intelligence community in all phases of the acquisition life cycle with trained acquisition intelligence professionals available to support. There must also be a collaboration between requirements, acquisition, research and development, and intelligence communities to ensure awareness of adversary capabilities and intentions. Defense acquisition personnel will manage all potential threats to an acquisition effort and focus on the critical intelligence parameters (CIPs). If an adversary defeats the CIPs, it will impede the lethality, survivability, sustainability and technological advantage of the acquisition system.
Speaker Mark Urlaub, an Acquisition Intelligence subject-matter expert within the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD), shared details and examples within his time in the acquisition community, specifically OSD activities related to the strategic outcomes mentioned in DoDI 5000.86. Intelligence must be integrated into the acquisition life cycle to ensure agile and effective warfighting capability.
“DoD has a contractual effort underway to improve upon the CIP processes currently implemented by the IC [Intelligence Community] in support of the Defense acquisition enterprise,” Urlaub said. “This effort seeks to develop a CIP dashboard that integrates threat stream data to provide improved awareness of adversarial threat capability development.”
A trained acquisition intelligence workforce ensures the integration of intelligence into the acquisition life cycle and supports the OSD(A&S) strategic goals to establish, develop and improve Defense acquisition. For instance, DAU and other DoD partners, including National Intelligence University, are working together to expand acquisition intelligence certification and training, including input from the intelligence community to address the latest acquisition intelligence reform mandates, Urlaub said.
To watch the webcast in its entirety, visit: https://www.dau.edu/events/Adaptive%20Acquisition%20Framework%20DoDI%20500086%20Acquisition%20Intelligence
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