In the military, not much happens without the products and services to clothe, feed, and equip the soldiers. I have. For the latest information from the U.S. Army Association Conference in Washington, DC, visit Tom Temin and Federal Drive Caught up with Contract Command Commander Brigadier General Christine Beeler.
Christine Beeler: So, given the Army’s total budget and the amount of money it spends on contracts, the Army Contracts Command mandates 93% of every dollar the Army mandates. Last year he ended the 2020-22 fiscal year with spending of about $100 billion, compared to last year he was $102 billion.
Tom Taemin: OK, that’s a big number. There is also the Defense Logistics Agency. So where are you in terms of commodities and strategy? Where do you end and where do they start?
Christine Beeler: The Defense Logistics Agency purchases, spares, repairs, uniforms, etc. after they are already in the system. Uniform items are a good example. Therefore, the War Department will develop something new, start the first production, after which the contract will be made by the Pentagon. And they continue to do great stockpiles and great construction along these lines.
Tom Taemin: By the way, uniforms seem to be a constantly fermenting area in the military, across all departments, materials, colors, camouflage types, digital, and all of this. are you there?
Christine Beeler: Wearing the Army’s latest fashionable Class A uniform.
Tom Taemin: By the way, it’s very sharp.
Christine Beeler: is. I accept. His PEO Soldier, the Soldier’s Program Office, is responsible for uniforms and designs for the Army, as well as all individual soldier kits, so he’s dealing with the latest helmets and the latest body armor for him. . As you know, the important thing now is to ensure that everyone in the service has body armor that fits properly, so an area of particular interest is, of course, the current body women than his armor Body armor that fits the soldier better. So all this has been considered, designed and tested as we speak.
Tom Taemin: So they develop it. I wonder if all the items in the kit are developed by people with specialized knowledge. But finding the vendor will be the Contracting Command.
We are really involved from start to finish. Concepts and ideas therefore engage industry partners to help develop concepts and ideas for Army Futures Command. And then maybe go into prototyping and tech development and tech insertion and then do those contracts as well. Army contracting organizations are involved in these procurement activities.
Tom Taemin: And I think we need to be able to help the process, for example, in one of the materials areas of the world of manufacturing. Hard to source in the US, such as going back to uniforms. specific textiles. Contracts and commands also maintain a type of knowledge base that the operations unit may need to know, but it is only available in China and is not developed as such. For example, some items?
Christine Beeler: Again, that’s the first, right? There’s a lot of research that the OSD, the Pentagon, the Army are doing, and when we’re looking at new technologies, new capabilities, not only in the United States, so the Buy American Act is a big deal. And while we are really working hard to make sure we meet those goals and objectives, so are our mission partners — Canada and Mexico as part of our partnership, and our allies and partners in Europe, and our allies around the world. It is the same. It’s a global supply chain. Our job is also to mitigate that risk.
Tom Taemin: I’m talking to Brigadier General Christine Beeler. She is the commander of Army Contract Command, an effort underway called Virtual Contract Enterprise. There’s a video on the website that tells you what it is and what it’s trying to accomplish, so that seems very important.
Christine Beeler: Virtual Contracting Enterprise is therefore a set of tools that enable contracting professionals to do everything from an electronic repository of documents that lead to contracts through data analysis. That’s why we’re committed to enabling you to harness the power of data to help you make better purchasing decisions in the future, and to really helping every military, seeing what and how they’re spending. Also, is there a better way to check the requirements? Not just because of the smaller size and lower price, but what you thought you would get when you first signed the contract. So with these tools, we’re empowering commanders to make informed decisions about how they want to spend their money.
Tom Taemin: Also, do these tools apply strictly to Army one-off contracts only, or are they used for, say, part of GWACS or part of DoD-wide acquisition vehicles?
Christine Beeler: The great thing about these tools is that the data resides in the system, right? Think federal government business operations or FPDS-NG. The Next Generation Federal Procurement Data System is a repository of information. If you have access to data, you can capture that information and use it to inform future decisions. , you can see all contracts. You can see how long it took from the time you started the acquisition lifecycle process to the time you earned the award and it actually got into the hands of a soldier. That’s the beauty of data.
Tom Taemin: And in general, how much of a portion of the civilian GSA type contract is the Army using for normal non-military commodities needed in bulk?
Christine Beeler: Yes, we use GSA all the time. So, in my opinion, it should be an available contract, an available requirement, an available KO. Make sure you’re using the best tools that exist to reach what your soldiers and commanders need… today, tomorrow, and into the future. So, from my point of view, the GSA is a great business partner, the DLA is a great business partner, the Navy is a great business partner, the Air Force is a great business partner. We are all working together to provide the very best for Soldiers, Airmen, Marines and Guardians.
Tom Taemin: And I should point out that the jacket you mentioned is olive, not purple, but spoken in a good way of true purple. or, for example, how it interacts with the futures command of elements of the military that are looking to non-traditional types of contractors to obtain innovative parts and their new technology, and how I wanted to ask if it works. Would you like to interact with them and make sure the Contracting Command is there?
Christine Beeler: So the great thing about Army Contracting Command is that we’ve always partnered with all these organizations. So when Army Futures Command came up, we often did military decision-making and analysis and said that these products are consistent with these contract centers. So we made sure that there is a contracting organization tied to all of the Army’s future commands, programs, and CFTs. To make it seamless, from Futures Command and the idea to the program of the record, the idea is to quickly fail, so it’s quick to succeed and soldiers to do things faster. Over the next two years we plan to deliver a significant number of the Army’s future requirements. contract has been created.
Tom Taemin: And I think there is a lot of activity going on right now just to replenish certain goods and inventories for what we shipped to Ukraine.
Christine Beeler: Absolutely a lot of activity going on. So when you think about what we have, what the president has allowed us to send, and what our partners are sending, we’re seeing an influx of recapitalizations in Army stock, but we’re buying old stuff. So if there are new items that are going to be produced to replace the items that we have, we are delivering them to Ukraine and we are going to buy new ones. So we continue to move the process forward.
Eric White: Brigadier General Christine Beeler is an Army Contract Command commander speaking with Tom Temin at the U.S. Army Association conference in Washington, DC.
https://federalnewsnetwork.com/army/2022/10/brig-gen-christine-beeler-talks-with-tom-temin-at-ausa/ brig. General Christine Beeler talking to Tom his Temin at AUSA