The Challenge:

As the single largest buyer of goods and services in the world, the U.S. Federal Government is looking for new and innovative approaches to buy smarter and operate more efficiently. Directed by the Secretary of Defense (SECDEF), the Office of the Chief Management Officer (OCMO) is implementing the business practice of category management to establish a renewed focus on enterprise services and improve the productivity of business operations across the Department of Defense (DoD). Buying goods and services as one enterprise (as opposed to hundreds of individual entities) is advantageous for several reasons: It helps eliminate redundancies, increases efficiency, and delivers more value and savings from acquisition programs. As DoD’s principal advisor on enterprise business operations and reform, OCMO, in partnership with the Nakupuna Companies, is actively leveraging the principles of category management to influence behavioral changes in requirements vetting and the acquisition of goods and services.

The Approach:

The Nakupuna Companies provides OCMO with Program Management Office (PMO) and advisory support related to category management. In conjunction with Advisory and Assistance Service (A&AS) consultants, the team organized a 90-day sprint to review $180 billion in DoD contract spending over a period of 33 months. During each sprint session, the team assisted in analyzing $20 billion of contract spending related to purchased goods and services and provided detailed analysis and recommendations of their findings to OCMO. With the OCMO staff engaged in multiple reform and process improvement initiatives, the Nakupuna Companies has remained a source of continuity for the DoD regarding these category management sprint sessions.

The Nakupuna Companies PMO support staff continues to build OCMO’s category management foundation for better collaboration across DoD organizations. This includes weekly stakeholder engagements, empowering subject organizations to implement savings, defining and maturing DoD processes to capture efficiencies (savings), and ensuring the needs and concerns of relevant stakeholders throughout DoD are being captured and addressed. As the category management initiative matures, the Nakupuna Companies will continue to provide OCMO with advanced data analysis of general ledger and contract data to help inform key decision makers.

The Results:

While the category management efforts are ongoing, they identified over $1 billion in savings across the FY20 Future Years Defense Plan (FY20 – FY24). Feedback from organizations across DoD show a cultural and behavioral change as the principles of category management are being communicated and implemented. In addition to the change factors identified, the Nakupuna Companies implemented processes for capturing and reporting status on all ongoing efforts (approximately 80) including tailoring those reporting structures to accommodate DoD Senior Leadership requests. The Nakupuna Companies PMO Support Team has standardized this reporting process across the A&AS consultants, DoD Organization stakeholders, and CMO personnel.

The Nakupuna Companies continues to work with the Department’s Chief Data Officer and the Advanced Analytics (ADVANA) team to ingest and compile contract data from multiple authoritative data sources. These reporting capabilities will help identify future target Categories and develop Category Strategies and Vendor Management plans.