Having tried just about every other approach to reforming the Pentagon’s reviled system for purchasing weapons, Congress is now moving to embrace the lessons of the marketplace. Word is that the House-Senate conference reconciling competing versions of the fiscal 2016 National Defense Authorization Act will adopt many of the acquisition reform provisions recommended by armed services committees in the two chambers, and those provisions exhibit a distinct tilt in favor of market-driven practices. Among other things, the conferees will likely favor reducing the number of key players in acquisition decisions, empowering the players who remain, putting more emphasis on up-front planning, aligning resources with requirements, eliminating regulations that don’t add value, streamlining the decision-making process, compressing development cycles, creating alternative pathways to accomplishing acquisitions, looking to the commercial world for innovations, and encouraging more competition. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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