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2:20 am, September 30, 2014

Jared Serbu Reports

Jared Serbu covers the Department of Defense for Federal News Radio. Jared's reports can be heard Monday - Friday on the Federal Drive and In Depth.

New VA secretary promises flatter, more open organization

Robert McDonald, the new secretary of the Veterans Affairs Department, says the biggest thing he's learned over his first seven weeks on the job is that the organization he leads is too hierarchical and too insular. He's promising to build a "flatter" VA that encourages dissent.

Tuesday - 09/09/2014, 03:56am EDT
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DoD targets service contracts, small procurements to boost competition rate

The Pentagon issued a handful of directives in August designed to reverse the trend in its contract competition rate, which has slipped from 64 percent in 2008 to 56.5 percent in the third quarter of 2014. A preliminary analysis shows most of the opportunity for improvement is in service contracting.

Monday - 09/08/2014, 04:46am EDT

DHA plans ‘gates' to qualify vendors for $20 bil IDIQ contract

The Defense Health Agency is conducting market research in advance of a planned RFP for a 10-year, $20 billion IT services and support contract. It's possible that vendors will be added to the contract without a formal source selection process.

Friday - 09/05/2014, 11:36am EDT
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DoD says it must deal with its shrinking technology advantage

The U.S. and its allies have dominated the military technology landscape for decades, but the Defense Department now sees potential adversaries in its rearview mirror. The Pentagon is coming up with some coping strategies to maintain its technological advantage, including version 3 of Better Buying Power.

Thursday - 09/04/2014, 04:13am EDT
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National Guard carves out its slice of DoD cyber mission, wants teams in every state

Both the Army and Air National Guard say they are making inroads toward gaining a foothold for their state-based forces in the Defense Department's growing mission sets in cyberspace. Both services say they are training more personnel and building the guard's credibility within the Pentagon when it comes to cyber missions.

Wednesday - 09/03/2014, 04:32am EDT
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On DoD: Navy strategic sourcing; acquisition workforce morale

On this week's edition of On DoD, we discuss strategic sourcing in the Navy, plus the current state of the financial management workforce in DoD.

Tuesday - 09/02/2014, 12:57pm EDT
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Inside the DoD Reporter's Notebook: DoD still slow to share medical records; New hiring initiative at VA; DISA's $12B IT contrac

In this week's edition of Inside the DoD Reporter's Notebook, Jared Serbu examines news and buzz in the Defense community that you might have missed including: DoD-VA medical record sharing still too slow; VA kicks off new drive to hire docs; DISA plans follow-on to Encore II contract

Friday - 08/29/2014, 06:47pm EDT

Air Force to bridge budget shortfalls by teaming with state, local governments

Air Force's new community partnership program looks to cut the costs of running bases by sharing operating and maintenance costs with the local communities in their neighborhoods.

Friday - 08/29/2014, 04:03am EDT
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Army tries to solve supply chain management problems with mobile apps

The Defense Department has a plan to get its supply chain management issues off of the Government Accountability Office's high risk list, but progress has been very slow. The Army has a plan to speed things up.

Thursday - 08/28/2014, 04:53am EDT
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VA to start accepting bids for new patient scheduling system

VA, which has been eyeing a replacement for its scheduling system long before the current scandal, plans to issue a final request for proposals by the end of next month and make an award by the end of the year.

Monday - 08/25/2014, 05:18pm EDT

Pentagon sees competition declining in defense contracting, and orders remedies

The Defense Department's acquisition chief outlined a series of changes intended to bolster competition for DoD contracts on Friday, lamenting the fact that the Pentagon has missed its competition goals every year since the goals were created.

Monday - 08/25/2014, 03:22pm EDT

DISA to restructure with eye toward more agility, Cyber Command

The Defense Information Systems Agency will begin to shake up its organizational chart in significant ways beginning on Oct. 1. But officials, so far, are reluctant to discuss the details.

Monday - 08/25/2014, 04:24am EDT
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Five firms get $2.5B contract to install new network on Navy ships

The indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity award will converge the heterogeneous IT architectures aboard Navy ships - all 630 of them - into a single, standards based architecture.

Thursday - 08/21/2014, 02:48pm EDT
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DoD revisiting security guidelines for commercial cloud

The Defense Information Systems Agency, which serves as the broker between Defense Department components and commercial providers of cloud computing services, says the certification standards it set for commercial providers may be too arduous for vendors. DoD also launched five pilots to test the use of commercial cloud providers and is reassessing how it develops cloud requirements.

Thursday - 08/21/2014, 05:19am EDT
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Navy turns to strategic sourcing to cut conference spending

The Navy awarded blanket purchase agreements to 17 small businesses, which they hope will take care of most DoD's conference planning needs for the next three years.

Wednesday - 08/20/2014, 04:31am EDT
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Inside the DoD Reporter's Notebook: Director of Naval Intelligence can't access classified information after 9 months

In this week's edition of Inside the DoD Reporter's Notebook, Jared Serbu examines news and buzz in the Defense community that you might have missed including: Pending the outcome of a Justice Department investigation, the Director of Naval Intelligence still has no security clearance; DARPA's former director is found to have improperly endorsed her former company; and changes are coming to the way DoD uses firm fixed price level of effort contracts.

Friday - 08/15/2014, 04:54pm EDT

On DoD: Army charts overlaps between cyber, electronic warfare

The Army has thousands of personnel working full-time on cyber, but so far, those soldiers have no dedicated career path. That may be about to change.

Friday - 08/15/2014, 04:27am EDT
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Army turns to open architecture to plot its future in robotics

With industry help, Army builds an open architecture and a set of open standards to chart a robotics acquisition strategy that's more modular, more interoperable and hopefully more cost effective.

Thursday - 08/14/2014, 09:34am EDT

Agencies slow to move out on DHS cyber program, survey says

A large chunk of the government IT workforce that's charged with implementing the Homeland Security Department's new continuous diagnostics and mitigation initiative still doesn't know much about it. The lack of awareness is most acute with agency inspectors general. But those that have pressed forward with CDM say their networks have already become more secure or less costly.

Wednesday - 08/13/2014, 05:08am EDT
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On DoD: DISA data center closures, Defense IT acquisition reform

David Bennett, the agency's Chief Information Officer and Alfred Rivera, the vice director for strategic planning join us to talk about DISA data center consolidation strategy and the path ahead.

Tuesday - 08/05/2014, 12:12pm EDT
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