The new vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said the Defense Department needs to fix its requirements processes — not just its acquisition procedures — if it’s going to make real progress toward buying and building software as quickly as Silicon Valley does.
And as of now, according to Gen. John Hyten, the process is a “nightmare across the board.”
At the suggestion of the Defense Innovation Board, Ellen Lord, the undersecretary of Defense for acquisition and sustainment has promised to create a software-specific acquisition pathway for DoD systems.
But Hyten told an audience at the Center for Strategic and International Studies that changing DoD’s buying procedures won’t solve the problem if it’s still stuck with a requirements process that takes too long, and was built for tanks and aircraft carriers.
In his capacity as the chairman of Joint Requirements Oversight Council, Hyten is largely in control of that process — known as the Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS). He believes it’s stuck in the industrial age.
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