How to bring technology to the warfighter

Friday - 3/18/2011, 10:40am EDT

Mark Bogart, Acquisition Executive, Defense Intelligence Agency

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By Jolie Lee
Federal News Radio

The Defense Intelligence Agency had its third Defense Intelligence Acquisition Conference in Miami this week. This year's theme, "Leveraging Efficiencies for Operational Effectiveness," focuses on how to bring new technology to the war fighter while dealing with a constantly evolving national security landscape.

The different arms of DoD have different needs, but " we all share the common thread that we're all trying to do more with less for the taxpayer," said Mark Bogart, an acquisition executive at the Defense Intelligence Agency, in an interview with the Federal Drive at the conference.

Fortunately for the acquisition workforce, acquisition improvement is one of the areas that is seeing an increase in budget, despite cuts to other areas, Bogart said.

The Defense acquisition workforce is "trying to play catchup" after years of engagement in two wars, he said.

"Finally, the stars are all aligning up to restore the strength of the acquisition workforce to get us where we need to be," Bogart said.

New guidance issued late last year by the Office of Management and Budget attempted to bust the myth that industry and contracting officer shouldn't talk to each other.

Bogart said he sees "a lot of skepticism" about talking to industry, especially over fear about protests. Contractors also might have a fear that if they ask a question, "they might be looked down upon," Bogart said.

"I encourage industry to engage with all my contracting officers to make sure we're not missing something. We're not perfect," he said. "The culture of my organization is to keep that dialogue open so we get good solutions for the mission and for the taxpayer."

This story is part of Federal News Radio's daily DoD Report. For more defense news, click here.