Over the last half century, technology relationships between the private sector and the Department of Defense (DoD) appears to have been a volatile oscillation between extremes rather than a pattern of partnership and collaboration. From periods of no engagement prior to the 1990s where federal agencies forged their own path with the development of custom tools and technology to the early 2000 where vendors took control selling commercial off the shelf solutions (COTS) to agencies that were unprepared for the cloud, cybersecurity challenges, and the constant IT refresh cycles of the digital age.
But neither of these scenarios have produced a mutually agreeable relationship between industry and the DoD until now. The era of bespoke development cut vendors out of the equation all together, whereas the COTS era resulted in dissatisfaction as commercial solutions were jury-rigged to meet the unique needs of the DoD to neither party’s satisfaction. But now, in the third decade of the 21st century, it appears as though industry and government have finally found a mutually agreeable relationship.
This new phase of collaboration and partnership is characterized by vendors intent on listening to not just to the DoD’s leadership but to the software developers and the warfighter to solve the challenges their facing and removing obstacles to mission success. In this short video, Mike Masten, Vice President of Modernization and Innovation Services at Chenega Systems, discusses how embracing agile development enhances this collaborative relationship and ensures that the problems the warfighter is experiencing in theater are resolved and not just patched over for a temporary fix.
Watch this short video to hear Masten’s advice on digital transformation best practices, curated for the Department of Defense: