Frank Kendall, the Pentagon’s acquisition chief, has labored to diversify the use of various approaches, from cost-plus to fixed-price deals, in a series of three installments of “Better Buying Power” revisions to the acquisition system. He believes reforms will come incrementally and by using existing laws rather than in a sweeping reorganization prescribing a single best way to do things. BBP “is based on the concept of continuous process improvement,” Kendall said in a memo to program managers released Wednesday. Consequently, the new 5000.02 instructions, which outline a new set of acquisition rules, will not be “the final word on acquisition policy.” He said he’s working with Congress to reduce statutory requirements “levied on our managers over the past few decades” to reduce unnecessary or non-value added work and speed things up. He’s already looking to the next version, which will “deal with the increasingly serious problem of designing for and managing cyber-security in our programs.” He said “we must do a better job” protecting DOD systems from cyber threats.
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.