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Air Force to transform installation acquisition

10/10/2007 - WASHINGTON (AFPN) -- Air Force leaders have announced a comprehensive restructuring of installation acquisition to strategically source goods and services in support of all Air Force installations in the continental United States. 

During the past 18 months, Air Force acquisition leaders conducted a comprehensive business case analysis of the organizational structure currently supporting state-side installation acquisition activities. 

"Results of this assessment call for the fundamental transformation of the installation acquisition organizational structure," said Secretary of the Air Force Michael Wynne. "This transformation enables the Air Force to take advantage of strategic sourcing and leverage resources effectively across the enterprise." 

Strategic sourcing is a collaborative and structured process of critically analyzing an organization's procurements and using the information to make strategic business decisions about acquiring commodities and services more effectively. 

"Air Force leaders recognize that an increased emphasis on strategic sourcing will improve customer service, reduce purchasing costs and accelerate delivery of goods to installation customers," said Sue Payton, assistant secretary of the Air Force for acquisition. 

The Air Force has already used the process in the acquisition of medical services, information technology and select sustainment support equipment. 

"However, to realize these benefits in a wider implementation of our procurements, the current installation acquisition organizational structure requires transformation," said Ms. Payton. 

The new system maintains acquisition support at installations, introduces five regional centers, and consolidates acquisition management and oversight under Air Force Materiel Command. 

"The transformed installation acquisition structure focuses on the use of strategic sourcing, minimizes supply chain costs through integration and collaboration, and results in considerable annual savings to the Air Force," said Charlie E. Williams Jr., deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force for contracting. "It creates increased visibility and accountability in the acquisition process, and simplifies purchasing at the installation level."

An important consideration in this restructuring is the effect on local small businesses around Air Force installations, according to Ronald A. Poussard, director of Air Force Small Business Programs. 

"By integrating small business partnerships, especially within the local business communities, the regional centers can create strategic and operational solutions that provide world-class support to the warfighter," he said. 

In fiscal year 2006, 36 percent of all Air Force small business contracts went to local small businesses. To maximize the success of the transformation, the regional centers will continue strong socio-economic program support.

The new structure presents leadership and professional development opportunities for military and civilian acquisition professionals within the acquisition career field, Mr. Williams said. 

The installation acquisition transformation structure will enable the Air Force to better support the warfighter by capitalizing on industry's best practices, driving improvements in the delivery of acquisition support to customers and by introducing commonality and standardization where appropriate. 



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