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Sustainment Factors in Weapon System Design Memorandum

Sustainment Factors in Weapon System Design Memorandum

Bill Kobren
The Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment (USD A&S) issued a new policy memorandum on 31 Jan 19 entitled “Implementation of Title 10, United States Code, Section 2443 – Sustainment Factors in Weapon System Design”. According to the memo, “Section 834 of the National Defense Authorization Act of FY 2018, (Public Law 115-91) as enacted in Title 10, United States Code (U.S.C.), Section 2443, directs the Secretary of Defense to ensure that the defense acquisition system gives ample emphasis to sustainment factors, particularly those factors that are affected principally by the design of a weapon system, in the development of a weapon system…This policy implements the statutory direction and is intended to ensure that sustainment factors are addressed in weapon systems design specifications, contracts, and source selection criteria.”

The memo goes on to state that the "...policy is applicable to solicitations and award of contracts for weapon systems issued on or after December 12, 2018 and requires the PM for weapons systems to ensure that:
  1. Measureable requirements for engineering activities and design specifications for R&M are included in TMRR, EMD and Production solicitations. The PM must justify in writing a determination to exclude engineering activities and design specifications for R&M from the solicitation and must also document the decision in the program acquisition strategy
  2. Sustainment factors, including R&M, are given ample emphasis in the process for source selection. Use of objective R&M criteria in the evaluation of competitive proposals is encouraged.
  3. Performance measures are developed using best practices for responding to the positive or negative contractor performance in meeting the sustainment requirements of a weapon system in all EMD and Production contracts.
  4. The use of incentive fees and penalties (as appropriate) to incentivize achievement of design specification requirements for R&M in all EMD and Production solicitations and contracts is encouraged.
  5. Base determinations of contractor performance on R&M data collected during the program for an EMD and Production contract and that, to the maximum extent practicable, such data shall be shared with appropriate contractor and government organizations.”