Helping the Acquisition Workforce Understand Warfighter Demands
To better support warfighters, the acquisition workforce needs to understand warfighter demands, said Heidi Shyu, Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (USD(R&E)). She also highlighted the importance of working with industry and across Services while investing in the right technologies for the future.
According to Shyu, senior acquisition leadership should work to create meaningful connections with warfighters to ensure effective communication with the acquisition workforce, as well as accept feedback and implement those changes. To that end, DAU has several training opportunities that help address these needs for the workforce:
- Mission Assistance provides a variety of consulting services to assist established teams in their work across different functional areas, including outside the normal acquisition workforce. The Multi-Functional Team Workshop takes participants through a realistic acquisition scenario to help teams understand warfighter needs. The Acquisition Strategy Development Workshop brings user representatives into the training with acquisition professionals to assist in the production of a usable acquisition strategy. In addition to these efforts, DAU offers the Understanding Industry Workshop, which explains how the supporting DoD industry operates. Contact your Associate Dean for Outreach and Mission Assistance for more information on setting up specific workshops or consulting opportunities.
- DAU offers two credentials focused on contingency contracting: Foundational and Advanced. These provide insight into working in a contingency environment, including operating in theater.
- Services Acquisition Team Member: Non-Acquisition Credential includes an introduction to acquisition ethics and contracting for non-contracting professionals.
In addition to credentials, DAU offers several standalone courses on these topics:
- Requirements Definition and Analysis provides insight into how requirements are developed, how to work with stakeholders on requirements and how to refine these requirements.
- Application Skills for Requirements Managers develops skills analyzing and documenting warfighter needs to create the associated DoD capabilities requirements documents.
- Stay tuned for the release of Stakeholder Requirements, an online training tool that will provide training on working with different stakeholders to determine their requirements and ensure they are incorporated into the acquisition process.