Supplier quality management for federal agencies

Tuesday - 7/16/2013, 11:24pm EDT

Steve Charles, co-founder, ImmixGroup

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July 16, 2013 -- This week on "Federal Tech Talk", host John Gilroy interviews Steve Charles, one of the co-founders of the immixGroup.

The discussion centers around some of the unintended consequences of a budget reduction for federal information technology professionals.

The problem is simple: both civilian and defense agencies are having their budgets cut.

In other words, just like in a household budget, one will have to repair an existing car, rather than replacing it.

As a general rule, this is no problem.

The concern arises with electronic equipment that changes models quickly.

Cell phones are a terrific example.

The hardware changes so fast that the manufactures have a hard time keeping up with making the latest model.

How does an agency get replacement parts from a company that does not make parts anymore?

One solution is to go to the secondary market.

We are seeing countries like China buying up what is called "e-waste" and placing their own components in the parts.

An organization needs that part and gets it through a complex set of dealers and brokers and you end up with a military outfit with a compromised piece of equipment.

How can a manufacturer of electronic equipment be responsible for quality of parts that far down the road?

During the interview, Charles offers a solution, the Trusted Supplier Program.

In the commercial world his solution is classified as "supplier quality management."

Essentially, it assures purchasers that participating organizations have products that are authentic, genuine, and from the original manufacturer.