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What is it?
The reality of today's defense environment is one of limited resources and growing requirements; forcing the Department of Defense (DoD) to reevaluate how to efficiently meet this growing demand. In an effort to better allocate manpower resources and dollars, Congress addressed these topics in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for FY08. The NDAA 2008 requires that consideration be given to using DoD Civilian employees to perform new functions and those functions currently performed by contractors. In addition, special consideration to in-sourcing shall be given to:

  • Functions that have been performed by DoD Civilians at any time in the last ten years.
  • Functions closely associated with the performance of an inherently governmental function.
  • Non-competitive contracts.
  • Contracts with excessive costs or of inferior quality.

In-sourcing allows the Army to return those functions in-house, either inherently governmental or closely associated with inherently governmental, which have been outsourced. In-sourcing also has the potential to bring significant savings to the Army by encouraging the hiring of civilians, rather than relying on the often more costly alternative of hiring contractors to perform work.

What has the Army done?
Over the past few years the Army has recognized the need to promote in-sourcing and gain tighter control over its core capabilities. Recently, the Army released its own guidance to implement NDAA 2008, Section 324. To date, new Army policies have resulted in the in-sourcing of 921 positions at an average savings of $48,000 per year, per position.

In an effort to gain visibility and accountability over service contracts, the Army also developed a web-based system called the Contractor Manpower Reporting Application (CMRA). The CMRA allows the Army to track service contracts to a level of detail never before achieved. The Army has instituted a concept plan process by which Army organizations are encouraged to in-source. This has led to the creation of an in-sourcing checklist, requiring Army organizations to verify that they comply with the Federal Acquisition Regulation and NDAA 2008 Section 324 when determining the appropriate source of labor. Detailed information can be found on the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Manpower & Reserve Affairs) website:

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?
More resources have been dedicated towards making CMRA more user-friendly and to ensuring that it produces high-quality, usable data. Efforts to promote the importance of in-sourcing throughout the entire Army community will continue, and the concept plan process and the checklist will be refined as needed.

Why is this important to the Army?
In-sourcing will continue to result in significant savings to the Army. Additionally, in-sourcing will allow the Army to gain more oversight and control of critical functions, resulting in better management practices and a higher degree of accountability.

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