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Category Management

The Department of Defense's implementation of Category Management (CM) consists of a structured, data-driven business practice whereby the organization broadly and strategically analyzes and manages common categories of spend with an enterprise-wide focus in order to eliminate redundancies, increase efficiencies, and enhance mission effectiveness. The CM Community of Practice serves as the DoD's central hub for enterprise-wide Category Management support, resources, training, collaboration, and development. 

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COMMUNITY / Category Management
Adam Stroup - Community Owner

Feed / Category Management

Resource / Category Management
Policy & Guidance
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Category Management  

Policy & Guidance
 

Defense Pricing and Contracting (DPC) Policy Vault

Office of Management and Budget (OMB)

  • M19-13 Category Management:  Making Smarter Use of Common Contract Solutions and Practices
  • M20-28  Buying for America
  • M-22-03 Advancing Equity in Federal Procurement
  • OMB Memorandum Increasing Small Business Participation on Multiple-Award Contracts, Jan. 25, 2024

POLICY & GUIDANCE

Category Management Program Offices

USAF Category Management Support Program Office

DASN(P) Policy and Guidance

Department of Navy Category Management Program Office  Requires CAC enabled registration to view these topics:   DON Wireless
JAN/SAM, MRO & Office Supplies
DON Furniture/Policy
Information Technology Contracts/Policy
Hardware i.e., NETCENTS, CHESS, NASA SEWP, NITAAC
Services i.e., SeaPort, CHESS, NETCENT, NASA SEWP, NITAAC, ALLIANT, DISA Encore
Software i.e., NON ESI and DOD ESL
Portfolio reviews / Business Information
Strategic Sourcing Policy
DON’s involvement in Category Management
Civilian Employee Assistance Program (CEAP)


 

Resource / Category Management
Newsletters and Related Web Sites
View Resource

 

Organizational Newsletters

GSA's Acquisition Gateway (AG). The old AG retired on Nov 28, 2023.  The new AG is the official online platform for government acquisition programs, policies, initiatives and tools. 

NGDS (Next Generation Delivery Service) Community Of Practice - FY23 Q3 Newsletter

Air Force Installation & Mission Support Center



 

Related Web Sites

Government Accountability Office

GSA Acquisition Gateway

GSA Supplier Base Dashboard 

Product Service Code (PSC) Selection Tool - a tool designed to help you navigate and select PSCs quickly and accurately.

PSC Tool - A prediction engine for Product Service Codes.

USA Spending.gov An official open data source of federal spending information, including information about federal awards such as contracts, grants, and loans


 

Resource / Category Management
Strategic Communications and Success Stories
View Resource
Strategic Communications

 Success Stories

Air Force Land Mobile Radio (LMR).  Video presentation by Mr. Rich Lombardi, Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Management & Deputy Chief Management Officer (DCMO).

Fire and Emergency Services Personal Protective Equipment: Powerful Example.

 IT Category - EIS Treasury Success Story.  Transitioning from legacy telecommunication contracts to the EIS Best in Class vehicle offers cost savings opportunities and access to modern cybersecurity capabilities.

Medical Category - Medical Professional Services Contract Success Story. Medical Service Contracts facilitate integrated, high-quality health services to beneficiaries DoD wide. Contracts have realized $15M (or 3.9%) in quantifiable cost avoidance. DoD wide contracts have reduced duplicative contract vehicles by approximately 80%.
 

GAO Reports

GAO-21-404SP Program Evaluation Key Terms and Concepts

GAO-21-40, FEDERAL BUYING POWER: OMB Can Further Advance Category Management Initiative by Focusing on Requirements, Data, and Training.

Category management is a government-wide initiative led by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) that saves the federal government billions of dollars each year by improving how agencies buy common products and services. Defining requirements is a key first step agencies should take to understand what products and services they need before deciding how to buy them. However, OMB has primarily focused on the contracting aspects of the initiative, for example, in its guidance and implementation metrics. Leading practitioners of category management told GAO that agencies could save billions of additional dollars if OMB focused more on how agencies define requirements, which is consistent with GAO's previous findings.

Key Words:  Small Business, Manage Requirements, Data Challenges

 

Discussions / Category Management

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Events / Category Management

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Announcements / Category Management

Community Announcement / Category Management
Periodic Table of Acquisition Innovations
View Announcement

Periodic Table of Acquisition Innovations from FAI provides resources in 6 categories:  Alternate Authorities, Market Research, Solicitation, Evaluation, Award, and Post Award.  Here is a link to a training video:  Introduction to the Periodic Table of Acquisition Innovations
 

Community Announcement / Category Management
Delivering a Requirement Differently
View Announcement

It's not about beating down the price of an item we buy from a vendor.  Not always anyway.  What if you look at a requirement, analyze how industry satisfies the requirement, determine if technology is available that changes the way DoD can deliver on that requirement?  Thus, deliver the requirement differently.  Check out the Land Mobile Radio (LMR)​ video found on the community home page's video showcase at the bottom.  The requirement is two way push to talk communication over the LMR infrastructure.  We can accomplish that by buying a $5,000 radio or paying $15 a month to put an application on a cell phone that gives us the exact same functionality.  Will it work in all cases? No.  It requires understanding the requirement and figuring out where it will work  (e.g., our Chaplains, air show workers, etc.) and where it won't.  
 

Community Announcement / Category Management
Category Management is an Essential Part of the President's Management Agenda (PMA)
View Announcement

Category Management initiatives are recognized at the highest levels of government via the President’s Management Agenda (PMA).

In the Biden-Harris PMA, using Best-in-Class solutions is cited specifically as a target area in the PMA, along with other elements for fostering improvements to the federal acquisition system that align precisely with category management principles.

Category management is found in the PMA’s Priority Area 3: Managing the Business of Government to Build Back Better. The PMA calls out category management key performance indicators (KPIs) to demonstrate increased stewardship year over year, including cost avoidance, spend under management (SUM), spend through Best-in-Class solutions, and training on category-management principles. The government aims to increase the number of new-entrant small-business entities in the federal marketplace for common goods and services, the primary acquisition scope of category management.

Category management also strongly supports efforts to advance equity in procurement goals by promoting small disadvantaged businesses. 
 

 

Community Announcement / Category Management
Disestablishment of the Chief Management Officer, Realignment of Functions and Responsibilities, and Related Issues
View Announcement
Pursuant to section 901(b) of the William M. (Mac) Thornberry National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2021 (Public Law 116-283), Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks has directed the transfer of each responsibility assigned to, and the personnel, functions, and assets of the former Chief Management Officer (CMO) of the Department of Defense to other DoD officials or organizations, effective Oct. 1, 2021.  In summary:
 
The authorities of the CMO will revert back to the Deputy Secretary of Defense, as the Chief  Operating Officer of DoD, and the functions and responsibilities of the former CMO will transfer to Office of the Secretary of Defense Principal Staff Assistants (PSAs).
 
The Director of Administration and Management (DA&M) will be designated as the Performance Improvement Officer and serve as the senior official for Defense Reform under the Deputy Secretary. 
 
The oversight of the Defense Business Systems will be shared by the Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) and the Chief Information Officer of the DoD. 
 
The Assistant to the Secretary of Defense (ATSD) for Intelligence Oversight (IO) will be combined with the Privacy Civil Liberty and Transparency (PCLT) functions under a new official called the ATSD (PCLT).
 
[Link to the Memorandum signed by the Deputy Secretary of Defense]
 

 

Community Announcement / Category Management
Military Working Dog Category Intelligence Report
View Announcement

The Air Force Security Forces Center-led Government Working Dog Category Intelligence Team recently submitted the Working Dog Category Intelligence Report (CIR), which looked into the requirements of maintaining working dogs within the Department of Defense, Department of State, Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice, in an effort to identify gaps and opportunities, recommend more effective and efficient sourcing strategies, close gaps between current practices and share government and industry best practices.  Find the six recommendations reported in this story, "Government Working Dog Category Intelligence Report Identifies Crucial Gaps And Best Practices."

Community Announcement / Category Management
Category Management Credential, CACQ 007
View Announcement

The new Category Management Credential, CACQ 007, provides an overview of Category Management (CM) and a foundation for both the Acquisition and non-Acquisition workforce on a CM team or that support CM oversight and reporting in the Department of Defense (DoD).  Upon completion of this credential, learners will be able recognize the concepts, principles and functions of category management.

The assumption is that learners have little or no experience or exposure to category management and this credential will provide the Just-In-Time knowledge to help them get their job done. 

You use CM in your everyday life—food, transportation, recreation may be some categories you think about.  If you commute in a metropolitan area, you have transportation options and likely you use cost, schedule and performance as data inputs to choose your transportation method.  What works best changes and when ride-share came along, that innovation changed the mix.  The Department needs innovations to improve how we do business.  CM is a way to find and adopt innovative solutions based on data to drive results! 

Visit the CM Credential Concept Card to review the requirements.  While there, just click on "Apply for this Credential" to apply.  The training is all on-line and you will earn 12 CLPs, plus a bonus of 2 CLPs for taking the credential exam (CLPs may change based on actual student times to complete CACQ 007).  The CM Credential will appear on your DAU transcript and it is good for 5 years.

How does the DoD define CM?  Category Management consists of a structured, data-driven business practice whereby the organization broadly and strategically analyzes and manages common categories of spend with an enterprise-wide focus in order to eliminate redundancies, increase efficiencies and enhance mission effectiveness.

From the US Army—the Army has taken a three-pronged approach consisting of improving contract processes, supporting decisions with data analytics, in order to save time, money, and manpower.  Initially the Army is addressing the areas of Transportation and Logistics, Information Technology, Facilities, Professional Services, Construction and Medical. 

Mr. Rich Lombardi, Air Force deputy under secretary for management and deputy chief management officer, has said "With the publishing of the National Defense Strategy, we have a clear understanding of where the department is going and category management clearly is a good fit with the line of effort to reform the department."  This in turn provides the potential to realign resources to increase the lethality and readiness of the joint force.

"The Air Force is driving a paradigm shift from budget execution to strategic cost management in an effort to obtain maximum value for each precious taxpayer dollar spent," according to General Holt.

The USAF uses the "Parthenon" to illustrate the four pillars of CM principles:

  1. Manage Demand & Consumption;
  2. Issue Policy;
  3. Use Strategic Acquisition Solutions; and
  4. Adopt Industry Best Practices. 

Only the 3rd pillar is about an acquisition solution or procurement.  The CM processes are Categorize Spend, Assign Cost Ownership via Category Managers, Develop Business Intelligence and Drive Results!

Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) governs, coordinates, and synchronizes strategic supply chain decisions across Navy.  The 2022 Commander's Guidance to drive higher performance uses the following Pillars: 

  • Demand Management to reduce demand and increase predictability through design, engineering, maintenance, etc.;
  • Optimize Working capital fund portfolio, taking a portfolio approach to manage cash allocation to maximize readiness;
  • Shape the industrial base.  Expand competition with suppliers and deepen partnership with strategic suppliers;
  • Increase End-to-End (E2E) Velocity--shorten repair Turn-around-Times in line with commercial benchmarks and move parts in the supply system faster.
  • Integrate existing supply chain resources to achieve E2E integration.

At DAU, find the Category Management credential, CACQ 007, and other great learning opportunities on the CM Community.
 

Community Announcement / Category Management
PD Defense Pricing and Contracting named the Category Management Accountable Official for DoD
View Announcement
Principal Director Defense Pricing and Contracting named the Category Management Accountable Official (CMAO) for DoD and co-chairs the DoD-OMB CXO-Category Management team.  A site was established on Intelink for CM working group business

Community Announcement / Category Management
ACQ 0830 Category Intelligence Report Deployed
View Announcement

​A new addition to the Category Management training page, ACQ 0830, deployed in mid-January.  This training will take approximately 1-2 hours to complete.  DAU will calculate the number of CLPs to award based on the times captured during the first 30-60 days.  You can use Course Login to access--just search for ACQ 0830!

Resources / Category Management

Community Resource / Category Management
Policy & Guidance

Category Management  

Policy & Guidance
 

Defense Pricing and Contracting (DPC) Policy Vault

Office of Management and Budget (OMB)

  • M19-13 Category Management:  Making Smarter Use of Common Contract Solutions and Practices
  • M20-28  Buying for America
  • M-22-03 Advancing Equity in Federal Procurement
  • OMB Memorandum Increasing Small Business Participation on Multiple-Award Contracts, Jan. 25, 2024

POLICY & GUIDANCE

Category Management Program Offices

USAF Category Management Support Program Office

DASN(P) Policy and Guidance

Department of Navy Category Management Program Office  Requires CAC enabled registration to view these topics:   DON Wireless
JAN/SAM, MRO & Office Supplies
DON Furniture/Policy
Information Technology Contracts/Policy
Hardware i.e., NETCENTS, CHESS, NASA SEWP, NITAAC
Services i.e., SeaPort, CHESS, NETCENT, NASA SEWP, NITAAC, ALLIANT, DISA Encore
Software i.e., NON ESI and DOD ESL
Portfolio reviews / Business Information
Strategic Sourcing Policy
DON’s involvement in Category Management
Civilian Employee Assistance Program (CEAP)


 

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Community Resource / Category Management
Newsletters and Related Web Sites

 

Organizational Newsletters

GSA's Acquisition Gateway (AG). The old AG retired on Nov 28, 2023.  The new AG is the official online platform for government acquisition programs, policies, initiatives and tools. 

NGDS (Next Generation Delivery Service) Community Of Practice - FY23 Q3 Newsletter

Air Force Installation & Mission Support Center



 

Related Web Sites

Government Accountability Office

GSA Acquisition Gateway

GSA Supplier Base Dashboard 

Product Service Code (PSC) Selection Tool - a tool designed to help you navigate and select PSCs quickly and accurately.

PSC Tool - A prediction engine for Product Service Codes.

USA Spending.gov An official open data source of federal spending information, including information about federal awards such as contracts, grants, and loans


 

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Community Resource / Category Management
Strategic Communications and Success Stories
Strategic Communications

 Success Stories

Air Force Land Mobile Radio (LMR).  Video presentation by Mr. Rich Lombardi, Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Management & Deputy Chief Management Officer (DCMO).

Fire and Emergency Services Personal Protective Equipment: Powerful Example.

 IT Category - EIS Treasury Success Story.  Transitioning from legacy telecommunication contracts to the EIS Best in Class vehicle offers cost savings opportunities and access to modern cybersecurity capabilities.

Medical Category - Medical Professional Services Contract Success Story. Medical Service Contracts facilitate integrated, high-quality health services to beneficiaries DoD wide. Contracts have realized $15M (or 3.9%) in quantifiable cost avoidance. DoD wide contracts have reduced duplicative contract vehicles by approximately 80%.
 

GAO Reports

GAO-21-404SP Program Evaluation Key Terms and Concepts

GAO-21-40, FEDERAL BUYING POWER: OMB Can Further Advance Category Management Initiative by Focusing on Requirements, Data, and Training.

Category management is a government-wide initiative led by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) that saves the federal government billions of dollars each year by improving how agencies buy common products and services. Defining requirements is a key first step agencies should take to understand what products and services they need before deciding how to buy them. However, OMB has primarily focused on the contracting aspects of the initiative, for example, in its guidance and implementation metrics. Leading practitioners of category management told GAO that agencies could save billions of additional dollars if OMB focused more on how agencies define requirements, which is consistent with GAO's previous findings.

Key Words:  Small Business, Manage Requirements, Data Challenges

 

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Community Resource / Category Management
CM Acquipedia Articles

ACQuipedia is DAU's Encyclopedia of Acquisition terms. 

Please see below for a list of Category Management-related articles. 

Category Management (CM)

Category Management Leadership Council (CMLC)

Contract Efficiency Assessments (CEAs)

Market Research

Product and Service Code (PSC)

Should Cost

Spend Under Management (SUM)

Strategic Sourcing

 

 

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Community Resource / Category Management
Market Intelligence
Market Intelligence 

Market Intelligence

SD-5 Market Research 

  • TACTICAL MARKET RESEARCH (MARKET INVESTIGATION)
    Tactical market research involves activities that result in an in-depth understanding of a market. Tactical market research is conducted during an acquisition process to answer specific questions about the market, suppliers, products, services, and so on in order to shape the acquisition strategy. Tactical market research builds on the results of ongoing strategic market research, using those findings to help identify targets for more in-depth research.
  • STRATEGIC MARKET RESEARCH (MARKET SURVEILLANCE)
    Strategic market research involves activities that result in a broad understanding of markets, technologies, business developments, and the products or services of interest. Strategic market research is an ongoing process and is usually not focused on a single acquisition. The goal of strategic market research is to develop a base of knowledge about the market area of interest and its products or services. This base of knowledge can then be applied to one or more acquisitions to help focus the more detailed tactical market research.
     


 


 

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Community Resource / Category Management
Category Intelligence Reports (CIRs)
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Community Resource / Category Management
Enterprise Guidance

Enterprise Guidance 

Category Management 

Enterprise Guidance
 


 


 


 

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Documents / Category Management

CIR Tips from US Army
Document Type:
Document
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Summary

CIR Templated and procurement.army.mil/catmgmt with all Category Management Tips and more requires CAC/PIV and an Army AMID account

In 2021, AMC IMCOM completed a CIR on “Custodial Services”. Custodial Services are IMCOM's 10th largest spend within OMB Level 2, Category 4.4 Facility Related Services. IMCOM obligated $140M in FY19 and $131M in FY20. Thirty-one (57.4%) contracts are awarded to an Ability One Nonprofit Agency (NPA), 17 (31.5%) are to a protégé of the Small Business 8(a) Program and six (11.1%) are to an Other Small Business custodial service contract. Outcome: Four Courses of Action (COAs) were recommended for implementation to further IMCOM's Custodial Services knowledge and start realizing cost savings based on this knowledge. A cost saving of 5.5% can be achieved if the Top 5 Installation’s contracts with the largest savings potential are reviewed and aligned with the industry benchmark upper limit. Savings could grow if the cost is brought to or below industry benchmark. These contracts must be negotiated by the servicing contract activity to meet the requirements set forth at a cost commensurate with category management practices in order to realize a cost savings potential of $10.3M.

GAO-21-404SP Program Evaluation Key Terms and Concepts
Document Type:
Page Link
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Summary

The Evidence Act, created a framework for a more comprehensive and integrated approach to federal evidence-building efforts. GAO-21-404SP updates the previous glossary (GAO-11-646SP) to highlight different types of evaluations for answering questions about program performance, as well as relevant issues to ensure study quality.

Program Evaluation:  key to program learning, program improvement, and statutory compliance.

  • Economy - The extent to which a program or intervention is operating at minimal cost, as determined by a
    program evaluation.
  • Effectiveness - The extent to which a program or intervention is achieving its intended goals, as determined by a program evaluation.
  • Efficiency - The ratio of monetary and/or nonmonetary program inputs (such as costs or hours worked by employees) to outputs (amount of products or services delivered) or outcomes (the desired results of a program).
  • Equity - The consistent, systematic, fair, just, and impartial treatment of all individuals, including individuals who
    belong to underserved communities that have been denied such treatment.
GAO-21-40, FEDERAL BUYING POWER
Document Type:
Page Link
Modified: Changed by Stroup, Adam on
Summary

GAO-21-40, FEDERAL BUYING POWER: OMB Can Further Advance Category Management Initiative by Focusing on Requirements, Data, and Training.

Category management is a government-wide initiative led by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) that saves the federal government billions of dollars each year by improving how agencies buy common products and services. Defining requirements is a key first step agencies should take to understand what products and services they need before deciding how to buy them. However, OMB has primarily focused on the contracting aspects of the initiative, for example, in its guidance and implementation metrics. Leading practitioners of category management told GAO that agencies could save billions of additional dollars if OMB focused more on how agencies define requirements, which is consistent with GAO's previous findings.

Key Words:  Small Business, Manage Requirements, Data Challenges

Category Management Fact Sheet - Category Intelligence Reports
Document Type:
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Summary

This accessible version of the Category Management -Category Intelligence Reports (CIRs) fact sheet accompanies the PDF version of the fact sheet

Introduction to Air Force Category Management
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Page Link
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Summary

Training includes history of Category Management (CM) in the Federal Government and US Air Force (USAF), the USAF 4 principles of CM, Roles and Responsibilities, and the 6 Step CM Process.

Introduction to Air Force Category Management

DoDD 7045.2 Capability Portfolio Management
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Summary

DoDD 7045.2 Capability Portfolio Management

Final Report National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence
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Summary

This final report presents a strategy to defend against AI threats, responsibly employ AI for national security, and win the broader technology competition for the sake of our prosperity, security, and welfare. The U.S. government cannot do this alone. It needs committed partners in industry, academia, and civil society.

GAO-21-40 Federal Buying Power OMB Can Further Advance Category Management Initiative by Focusing on Requirements, Data, and Training
Document Type:
Page Link
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Summary

"The category management initiative is intended to help federal agencies buy like a single enterprise so they can leverage the government's buying power, save taxpayer dollars, and eliminate duplicative contracts. We found that the Office of Management and Budget needs to focus more on ...

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