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CAREER FIELDS

Acquisition Functional Areas

The defense acquisition system relies on a highly skilled workforce in order to deliver capability to our warfighters. Each workforce member specializes in an aspect of the acquisition system which corresponds to one of six functional areas. Select a specialty below to learn more about training, certification, and continuous learning opportunities.

About the Acquisition Functional Areas

For more information regarding the enterprise-wide effort to provide the DoD’s acquisition workforce with tailorable, career-long learning resources available at the time of need, please visit the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment, Human Capital Initiatives website.

Business - Financial Management and Cost Estimating

The DoD Business Career Field is comprised of two tracks: Business Financial Management (BUS-FM) and Business Cost Estimating (BUS-CE). As advisors to acquisition decision makers, professionals within this functional area are responsible for financial planning, formulation and budgeting, budget analysis and execution, and cost estimating for a variety of programs within the DoD.

Contracting

The Contracting workforce is vital to accomplishing the DoD’s mission by negotiating the best deal for the warfighter while demonstrating prudent stewardship of taxpayer dollars. Contracting professionals instill fairness and integrity in the acquisition process and serve as an overall business advisor to DoD acquisition teams.

Engineering and Technical Management

The ETM workforce has a vital role in developing, fielding, and sustaining defense systems and ensuring DoD products are delivered on time, perform as expected, and are cost-effective. The role requires developing and implementing solutions with an integrated technical approach across the total life-cycle to satisfy stakeholder needs and expedite transition of technology to the user, practicing early production planning and systematically examining producibility.

Life Cycle Logistics

The Life Cycle Logistics functional area spans the system life cycle, encompassing acquisition and sustainment activities, and includes professionals responsible for planning, developing, implementing, and overseeing effective and affordable product-support strategies for weapons, materiel, or information systems.

Program Management

Acquisition professionals in the Program Management career field are concerned with all functions of a program management office to accomplish program objectives for the development, production, deployment, and sustainment of systems to meet the user’s operational needs.

Test and Evaluation

T&E is a critical part of the DoD acquisition process. T&E professionals develop, optimize, execute and evaluate the testing of system performance, interoperability, reliability, maintainability and cybersecurity. They offer unbiased information to support and inform design improvements, production and fielding decisions.

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