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SOCOM Acquisition Perspective to NDIA. James W. Cluck Acquisition Executive & Director, Center for Acquisition and Logistics (SOAL ) 20 March 2009. Agenda. Mission SOF Acquisition Special Operations Peculiar State of Acquisition SOFIC. USSOCOM Acquisition Mission.

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Acquisition Perspective to


James W. Cluck

Acquisition Executive &

Director, Center for Acquisition and Logistics (SOAL)

20 March 2009

  • Mission
  • SOF Acquisition
  • Special Operations Peculiar
  • State of Acquisition
ussocom acquisition mission
USSOCOM Acquisition Mission

Provide Rapid and Focused Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics Support to SOF Warfighters

Acquisition Efforts Are Inherently Joint

Formal Requirement at 70-80% Capability Level; Can Evolve the Design to a 100% Capability

Short Chain of Command; Small Staff; Only Commander and Acquisition Executive Can Say No

Understand and Accept Risk; Aggressively Manage It

Maturity of User Is Key in Risk Acceptance

What Makes SOF

Acquisition Different

milestone decision authorities internal vs external
Milestone Decision AuthoritiesInternal vs. External

* MDA –Other consists of two AT&L ACAT I programs and all programs being tracked that are TBD for the level of MDA at this time

** Non-ACAT Efforts consists of projects that are tracked below ACAT level III

state of acquisition
State of Acquisition
  • Crossroads or Crisis?
  • Requirements Oversight
  • What’s Changed
  • Significant Challenges
  • Keys to Success
crossroads or crisis
Crossroads or Crisis?
  • New Perspective Required for New Security Threat Environment
    • Differentiate Rules for Less than ACAT I/II Programs…Accelerate Requirements to Execution
    • Implement “Common” Investment Profiles for Modification Programs
    • Replace Oversight Reporting with Transparency (Data & Decisions)
    • Encourage Innovation – Not Every Mistake Is Fraud, Waste or Abuse
    • Emphasize Agility & Best Value Within a Competitive Marketplace
requirements oversight
Requirements Oversight
  • Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System
    • “The JCIDS Process Has Also Proven to Be Lengthy, Taking an Average Up to 10 Months to Validate a Need.” (GAO Report)
    • JCS Metrics Show that 10 Months Is on the Low Side
    • Nominally JCIDS Documents Are 50 Pages
  • Dispensation by VCJCS for SOF Peculiar Capabilities
    • JROC Kept Informed…SOCOM Has Approval
    • Nine Paragraph Format Approved by Component CDR
  • Process Truths
    • Increased Oversight Does Not Translate to Better Products
    • Following Every Rule does not Guarantee Success
    • Early Failures Must Be Allowed with No Retribution
    • Every Failure Is Not a Case of Fraud, Waste or Abuse
what s changed
What’s Changed
  • Users Actively Evolving TTPs and Expecting Immediate Response in Equipment
  • Operators Prefer the Portable Solutions
  • We’re Less Likely to Pursue Long Term Government/Industry Development Projects
  • Large Percentage of Commercially Developed Aircraft Modified for SOF Use Versus Military Aircraft Modified for SOF Use
  • Component Resource Sponsoring Role
  • Through Our Materiel Management Activity We Can Track MFP-11 Equipment from the Time It Is Fielded to Where It Is Currently Located – Worldwide
  • Forcing Service Common Items To Be Better Defined.
significant challenges
Significant Challenges
  • High Power, Low Weight, Fuel Efficient and Moderate Cost Engines for Combatant Craft; Lightweight, Multi-Fuel, Submersible, 30 HP Outboard Engines; High-Bandwidth Communications for Small Craft
  • Looking at the Warrior as a System Instead of Individual Products
  • Ammo – Require Smokeless, Flash Suppressant with Greater Accuracy and Reliability
  • There Are Only Two Companies Working Acceptable I2Solutions in the US
  • Next Generation Multi-Function C4I Devices
  • Operational Leasing Legislation and Lease Duration Restrictions
  • Increased Pace of Getting Technology and Capability Forward Outpaces the

Training and Support Base

  • Still Using the Methods and Tools Used to Train the Last Generation
  • Transition to Capability-Based Budgeting

Keys to Success

  • Abandon Legacy Systems/Practices
    • Avoid Death Spiral Phenomenon
    • Directed Purges Vice Proportional Cuts
    • Force the Requirements Process to Adapt
  • Establish Meaningful Metrics Thru Competitive Prototyping
    • Avoid the SLA Trap on IT Systems
    • Define the Operational Envelope of Reality vsRequirements
  • Manage Expectations Vice Projects
    • Primary Obstacles are Policy & Culture – Not Technology
    • Portray User/Business Benefit – Not Technical Capability
  • Cultivate the Workforce
    • Commitment to Individual Training and Growth
    • Certification Bonuses and Criteria
    • Implement Adaptive Hiring Authorities
sof industry conference sofic 2 4 jun 09
SOF Industry Conference (SOFIC) 2-4 Jun 09
  • Science & Technology Theme Designed to:
    • Communicate USSOCOM Technology Development Objects
    • Focus Industry Technology Development Efforts
  • Keynote Presentations by:
    • USSOCOM Acquisition Executive – Mr James Cluck
    • USSOCOM Science Advisor – Mr William Shepherd
  • USSOCOM Panel Discussions on:
    • Command Control, Communications & Computers (C4)
    • Intelligence, Surveillance & Reconnaissance (ISR)
    • Mobility Platforms
    • SOF Individual Operator
  • Industry Presentations on Current Technology Efforts
  • For More Information Go to: