When buying and using new information technology equipment, it's difficult to keep up with changes as today's innovations can be tomorrow's old gadgets.

The Army Contracting Command Chief Information Officer G-6 monitors technological advances seeking opportunities to leverage the latest innovations within the military contracting community.

"Industry creates new technology capabilities on a daily basis that have benefited our mission objectives and helped save the lives of Soldiers," said Gino Magnifico, ACC chief information officer.

"Commercial industries have helped us disseminate accurate information worldwide. This has increased the productivity of our workforce while realizing long-term cost savings."

Magnifico said his office leverages available technologies to determine their value and how they can solve the unique business needs of the organization.

"The implementation of commercially developed collaboration and knowledge sharing tools has greatly enhanced productivity across the enterprise, allowing the command to interact and share information without regard to geographical location," he said.

"Previously, document sharing was limited to email and serial processing efforts. Today, ACC benefits from the ability to share contract documents and other critical information across the globe in near-real time.

According to Magnifico, commercial industry monitors how the Army uses its technologies to help them better understand the Army's global capabilities.

"The commercial industry is interested in how we deliver global mission command networks and system capabilities using an enterprise-wide approach to reduce costs and overhead," he said. "They are also interested in how we have increased efficiency and security associated with the contract writing process and how we are implementing the Army-wide contract writing system."

Developing relationships, face-to-face and virtually, is something Magnifico said is very important in the IT community. Aligning with groups and understanding advancements in IT have helped ACC maintain relevance in the user community.

"We regularly participate in webinars and watch for new developments in journals and white papers developed by both governmental and commercial industries," he said.

"It's also important for us to belong to local, national and international groups that help us advance in our mission. In the government, we align and coordinate to support the initiatives of federal CIO groups, Department of Defense CIO, Army CIO and others."

According to Magnifico, Web-based platforms, such as the ACC Enterprise Portal, leverage industry-standard best practices and have helped ACC modernize business processes that were once paper-based and labor-intensive.

"These platforms provide user-centric portals that streamline workflows and increase productivity," he said. "The ACC Enterprise Portal is used internally to facilitate information sharing, improve workflows, and increase productivity by providing users with a central place to easily exchange information and perform key business processes."

Magnifico said his staff actively promotes a culture of program management that uses proven and practical IT best practices to attain excellence in all projects and programs

"The entire organization is committed to using proven, practical industry best practices to ensure that all IT investments provide measureable improvements in mission performance," he said. "The keys to successful program management activities are coordination, communication, standardization and measurement."