The long awaited GAO report on IUID was published late last week. From my viewpoint, as a commercial provider, the GAO has honed in on areas that require considerable DoD attention. To summarize, these include the following:
- Oversight and enforcement of DFARs for new acquisitions and government furnished property
- Lack of progress toward legacy marking
- Lack of progress in preparing information systems at the enterprise level for sharing and exchanging IUID data
I agree with these conclusions, with the caveat that it is easy to point only to what is not being well managed. I believe that OSD has done a good job of providing policy support for IUID.
While some of the deficiencies noted above are systemic in nature, e.g. ensuring consistent enforcement of IUID policy stemming from DFARS, others simply boil down to DoD’s need to “move out” in certain areas that can be commercially supported.
Two such areas come to mind. Marking and data cleansing for legacy or government furnished property items has been successfully completed in some venues, and knowledgeable commercial teams are readily available to complete this task. Likewise, enterprise-level software with the capability to link IUID data into pre-existing legacy or ERP systems has already been developed and successfully deployed.
These are NOT capabilities that need to be invented or home grown at this time. They have evolved and matured significantly over the past three to five years as the policy and implementation efforts within DoD have evolved.
At the end of the day no one likes to hear that they are not managing well, however I agree with GAO’s assessments of the state of IUID implementation and with their recommendations for improvement.
A summary of the study with recommendations can be found here: http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-482
The full GAO report is also posted at the Resource Center on A2B’s website.