The Army‘s new program executive officer for enterprise information systems is trying to make solicitation time as short as possible, so that as soon as the office gets extra money they can spend it, according to a Federal News Radio report.
Doug Wiltsie recently spoke to an industry audience at an Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association event and indicated that his plan would adjust the office’s acquisition project timeline so to spend whatever money it gets more quickly.
The PEO-EIS manages Army programs such as Defense Department biometrics capabilities, electronic medical records and software and hardware purchases.
Wiltsie proposed a new plan that would increase industry engagement and build document requirements much earlier than was done in the past.
“We will start to engage you with draft (requests for proposals) and industry days to get those discussions going,” Wiltsie said. “That might be a year out before the award’s going to be made. What I’d like to do is get everybody together so that everybody knows where we’re going. And then when the money arrives, it’s going to be a pretty short RFP.”
Part of his plan also makes for changes in management style so that purchases focus on capability and not just individual products.
“You may see decisions that come out of PEO-EIS, but also out of the Army, that don’t appear to make sense from a product level,” Wiltsie said. “The reason is we’ve got to start thinking like this: As money gets tighter, we need to understand where else we can pull capability to meet the total requirement.”
One movement Wiltsie is looking to is using current capabilities instead of spending funds on duplicate services. The report notes this occurs in the area of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance in Afghanistan. Wiltsie said there is already a good bit of ISR capability in the air and on ground that the Army should make better use of.
This movement falls under the Distributed Common Ground System goals, which the Army has deployed in order to better tie intelligence resources together.
“The entire acquisition community is coming out of an environment where operational requirements were written and vetted in days, and we had to react,” he said. “What we need to be able to do as things get fiscally constrained is to start looking forward. We need to get proactive.”