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DoD Enterprise Software Initiative (ESI) Best Value Toolkit

Last Updated : 06/12/2013

DoD Enterprise Software Initiative (DoD ESI), an official Department of Defense initiative sponsored by the DoD Chief Information Officer (CIO), helps information technology buyers achieve Best value on commercial software for their government programs.

This DoD Enterprise Software Initiative (ESI) Best Value Toolkit represents the commercial best practices combined with DoD ESI's many years of experience in commercial software acquisition in the DoD. It has been designed for use in a variety of situations - use as appropriate and customize its tools to fit your situation.

Best value can be achieved when programs:

  • Acquire solutions that best fit their requirements
  • Receive the best price, all factors considered
  • Secure the best terms and conditions

All resulting in the most economical Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).

This toolkit builds on the BEST VALUE PROCESS ROADMAP contained on the website to guide each user through the tools and resources available to DoD IT buyers to ensure they obtain best value on commercial software acquisitions

  • Identification of the two common DoD Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) software acquisition scenarios; 1) performing a rapid assessment of a small to moderate sized order and 2) large enterprise acquisitions approached in a proactive mode.
  • Presentation of simple-to-use and time efficient assessment process (with a suite of available tools) to help ensure best value (given constraints) when transaction terms have been proposed. Emphasis is on summary level data with links to detailed plans, processes, checklists, and financial models.
  • A process roadmap that illustrates recommended steps (commercial best practices) to follow and tools to use to successfully plan and execute a large enterprise acquisition. This more detailed approach walks the user through the four phases (Gather, Analyze, Strategize, and Negotiate) and provides the process to follow and a suite of tools to utilize to ensure Best value.

Processes Supported

Departments Associated

  • Army
  • Navy / Marine Corps
  • Air Force
  • Agencies

Integrated Product Support Elements Addressed


This product support analytical tool was identified as part of a database provided solely to assist defense acquisition workforce professionals to identify best value product support solutions which optimize system readiness and life cycle cost. Neither the Department of Defense or the Defense Acquisition University provide any warranty of these tools whatsoever, whether express, implied, or statutory, including, but not limited to, any warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose or any warranty that the contents of the item will be error-free. This analytical tools database should under no circumstances be considered as being all-encompassing, and is in no-wise meant to endorse the capabilities or products of any particular individual, company, or organization.


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