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News | Sept. 29, 2023

Tech enhances speed, impact of reporting significant events

By Patrick Tremblay DCMA Public Affairs

Situation reports, commonly called SITREPs, are essential for leadership and agency-wide awareness of unscheduled significant events that could negatively impact the Defense Contract Management Agency’s mission.

To be effective, reports must be initiated, approved and delivered quickly. The DCMA Mission Assurance team recently partnered with the Portfolio Management & Business Integration Directorate to create and launch new technology to make this happen.

Historically, SITREPS have been a cumbersome process relying on email, with limited tracking and inconsistent effectiveness. Several years ago, DCMA’s Mission Assurance team began a year-long effort to modernize the reports, collaborating with PM&BI to develop an early prototype effort on the agency’s internal SharePoint site. The pandemic interrupted deployment of these process improvements, but with DCMA’s transition to the Defense Department’s DoD365J platform and the pandemic over, PM&BI is now able to deliver enhanced capabilities on behalf of the assurance team through a newly automated SITREP process. By integrating with the agency’s program support and industrial analysis data, the team expects the new process to increase the speed and effectiveness of SITREPS, and to provide better insight on potential impacts to major defense acquisition programs and the defense industrial base.  

“Annie Ma of PM&BI’s Policy Guidance and Competency Planning Division led the early prototype effort, and today’s automated SITREP is possible due to her desire to improve processes through automation,” said Gary Gonthier, PG&CP Division supply chain manager. “As we transitioned to DoD365J, Annie was front and center again, spending hours learning how to harness the capabilities and bring an even better SITREP process to SharePoint and our new PowerApps platform.”

Building the new capabilities was just the first part of the effort. With a streamlined and effective SITREP process is in place, the team is working on launching it and making it part of the DCMA culture. 

“We’re using a variety of concise learning events to ‘sell’ the process and have it adopted quickly,” said Robert Loviska, PG&CP Division policy writer and supply chain manager, who noted that the reports themselves are generated at the local level, where unscheduled significant events occur. “This gave us a clear target audience. While we want all leadership, from the smallest office to headquarters trained on the process, it’s those generating the SITREPs who must take the lead.”

SITREPs provide critical information across the agency on a variety of events from heavy weather, wildfires, flooding and other acts of nature; to man-made acts from labor disputes to industrial accidents that pose a threat to delivery timelines. When these events occur, a SITREP is initiated by an action officer at the most local level, then approved and released to the agency’s senior leadership team and relevant program integrators by the unit’s commander, directors, component heads or designated representatives.

Gonthier and Loviska have partnered with Jim Nielson in PM&BI’s Program Support Division to produce a series of short videos that demonstrate the new SITREP process. In addition, the team rewrote the SITREP user guide with step-by-step instructions, which will eventually replace existing policy.

Walt Eady, PM&BI executive director, said the SITREP is a key reporting tool that provides invaluable insights to DOD decision makers and DCMA leadership. “The newly designed SITREP innovative approach of collecting and disseminating information is a game changer for the department. The new process brings speed and interoperability across the agency and DOD that accelerates the availability of actionable information.”

Members of the DCMA team can learn more about the SITREP tools on PowerApps (login required), or by contacting the SITREP team.