Grundman quoted in Defense News, “DoD Previews New Guidelines for Better Buying Power”

24 September 2012 • 0 Comments

“I think the mixed-at-best implementation of Better Buying Power is a reflection of that deficiency,” said Steven Grundman, the Lund Fellow at the Atlantic Council. “Better Buying Power 2.0 would add the infrastructure of training, documents and, yes, culture that is actually going to enact at the far reaches of the acquisition system the sound principles that were in Better Buying Power.” . . . The lack of changes to guiding documents in the first version of Better Buying Power meant that acquisition officers needed to employ the same thought processes as [then Under Secretary Ashton] Carter, not an easy task, said Grundman, who also helms Grundman Advisory. “At the time, I said that to implement these practices, he was relying on there being decision-makers in the system who understand this stuff and are as smart as him,” Grundman said. “Because, as we know, there is almost no one in the Pentagon who is as smart as Ash Carter, and that’s what it would take to get this done without some kind of a manual to transmit down to the contracting officers and acquisition executives what this is supposed to do.” . . . Complicating matters is an ongoing struggle between factions within the Pentagon who disagree over the flexibility provided to the acquisition workforce. . . . “This is an ideological contest,” Grundman said. “I don’t think that the federal government in particular will ever be awarded the discretion that I think, frankly, efficiency requires. That’s one of those prices we pay for democratic governance.”


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