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May 20, 2022 | Information, Other Defence

Investment firm Carlyle to buy ManTech in $4.2B deal

The acquisition, if approved by shareholders and the government, is expected to be completed later this year.

On the same subject

  • The Air Force’s new information warfare command still has work before full integration

    September 17, 2020 | Information, Aerospace

    The Air Force’s new information warfare command still has work before full integration

    Mark Pomerleau WASHINGTON — While the Air Force's new information warfare command has reached its full operational capability less than a year after it was created, leaders still have work to do to fully integrate its combined capabilities in a mature fashion. That assessment comes from Brig. Gen. Bradley Pyburn, deputy commander of 16th Air Force, who on Tuesday laid out a three-pronged criteria — deconfliction, synchronization and integration — for assessing the command's maturity during a virtual event hosted by AFCEA's Alamo chapter. The command combines what was previously known as 24th and 25th Air Force, placing cyber, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, electronic warfare and weather capabilities under a single commander. The first category Pyburn coined is deconfliction, which essentially means “do no harm.” Pyburn described the need to have situational awareness of the battlespace and understand what friendly and enemy forces are where, what authorities exist, what targets forces are looking at and what capabilities they have. The second phase of maturity is synchronization, which involves aligning all the capabilities and actions in the battlespace. Pyburn said if the command adds activity A to activity B and C, it will end up with a greater result, because it can change the timing and tempo of how the effects are delivered for maximum impact. Lastly, Pyburn described integration as the most mature aspect of where 16th Air Force currently is. This involves baking in planning, assessment, command and control, all the desperate effects and operations from the beginning. This is where the command really begins to break down all the stovepipes that previously existed with all these capabilities, a key reason for integrating and creating the new organization. “From a maturity perspective, where do I think 16th Air Force is? We're probably somewhere between deconfliction and synchronization. We've got some examples of where we approach integration but I think it's healthy we understand where we're at today and where we want to go forward in the future,” Pyburn explained. The command has created what Pyburn called a J9 to help with assessing maturity. The J9 would be plugged into real world events and exercises to help with those self assessments. In a generic example, Pyburn outlined what full maturity integration would look like. A mission partner requests support, which could be in the form of air domain awareness, finding particular targets or threats or ISR assistance. 16th Air Force, in turn, would be able to link that request with other needs, either in the same geographic area or in other areas of operations, pioneering what its top officials describe as a “problem-centric approach,” which aims to look at the specific problems the commands they support are looking to solve and starting from there. “[In] our problem centric approach, as we look to generate insights across all of our 16th Air Force capabilities, what we may find is that particular problem set is linked to other problem sets and we're able to focus on the root cause of the problem,” Pyburn said. Based on a raft of authorities from cyberspace to intelligence collection as well as the relationships built through other communities and organizations, 16th Air Force can look at the root cause of a problem and build from there. “We can build a community of interest, we can start to put mission partners together into [an] operational planning team and we can not only generate better insights against that root cause, we can start to look at how we can layer in effects at speed and at scale across all domains of warfare and give the options to the combatant commander and the mission partner as the authorities to go after that adversary,” Pyburn said. Pyburn also offered insight into the command structure of 16th Air Force, which has his deputy commander job along with a vice commander role. That latter job, held by Brig. Gen. David Gaedecke — who previously served as the lead for the Air Force's year long electronic warfare study — does more of the traditional operational, test and evaluation functions. In the deputy commander role, Pyburn said his job is similar to the director of operations. He comes up with the requirements in support of combatant commanders. “Part of it is, I may think I know what I want, but if I don't see what the art of the possible is, it's really hard to know what I want, if that makes sense. It's a little bit of a chicken and egg,” he said.

  • Bridging the ­Procurement Divide

    April 24, 2018 | Information, Aerospace, Naval, Land, C4ISR

    Bridging the ­Procurement Divide

    CHRIS MACLEAN © 2018 FrontLine Defence (Vol 15, No 2) A critically honest and engaged discussion about government and industry engagement, was held recently at the Telfer School of Management as part of the new Complex Project Leadership Programs. The program participants (mostly federal civil servants who are involved in procurement) interacted with executive-level industry leaders – Joe Armstrong, Vice President and General Manager at CAE; Jerry McLean, Vice President and Managing Director of Thales Canada; Iain Christie, Vice President of AIAC; and Kevin Ford, CEO of Calian – who shared their leadership insights, as well as what it is really like to do business in Canada. Through the highlighting of mutual pain points and frustrations, as well as identifying what is being done well and ways to move forward together, efficiently, each party gained insight and understanding that is sure to improve communication and future progress. It was evident that both sides wanted to learn from each other and pinpoint the principles that would help achieve mutual success; ultimately impacting the national economic footprint and saving taxpayer dollars. From the industry perspective, dependability equals direction. When a company can be assured that it has a fair opportunity to compete for a contract, it can set its sights on that goal and will make the necessary investments to ensure the best possible outcome. When government programs start and stop and change and restart, companies find it difficult to justify the extended costs because they lose their competitive edge and/or any ability to make a profit. Instability does not save the taxpayer, but it does have the potential to impact both quality of product and sustainability of the bidders (therefore employment numbers). Contracts equal sustainability and confirmation that the company direction is on track for success. Profit equals growth and further investment. Employment and supply chain purchases depend on a profit margin that allows growth. This “number one” business requirement conflicts with the government's prime directive is to ensure its bidders make a bare minimum of profit. When asked what they need from their government counterparts in order to create a better working relationship and foster a robust industry that can contribute to a strong GDP, the industry panelists identified two key elements. One was “more accuracy in the procurement process” and the other was “predictability”. Industry must be able to foresee where profits and sustainability could potentially come from. The time it takes to award large projects is also a limiting factor to success. It was noted that, since the beginning of time, a cornerstone of success for industry has always been ensuring the satisfaction of its client. It is believed that trust in the quality of the product and ease of customer service will lead to sustainability in the form of continued business. Not so with government contracts, which seem skewed to ensure previous successes gain no advantage, and must in some cases be hidden from decision-makers. Not taking into account a company's excellent past delivery performance, was said to contribute to industry's lack of incentive to perform to the best of its ability at all times. A company's ability to invest goes beyond individual contracts, which means the prospect of being evaluated for value can be a powerful incentive for going that extra mile – if exploited, not suppressed. Government employees were encouraged to exhibit courage in pursuing ways to truly streamline the procurement process, rather than repeatedly adding more and more layers of approvals and meetings. Industry leaders across the spectrum have commented on a palpable “lack of trust” on the part of government negotiators. Does this mistrust come from contract negotiators feeling the pursuit of profit is somehow un-Canadian? Or does it mean a company does not care enough about its customers? Neither assumption is accurate, and this may be one area where a culture change could make a world of difference. As one audience member exclaimed: “This was the best, most transparent conversation regarding the procurement process, I have ever heard.” While large-scale procurements will always be contentious due to the huge dollars and risk at stake, embracing the concept of open and unreserved dialogue, like what was experienced by this small group, has the potential to uncover procurement pitfalls and create a more progressive process. The Telfer School of Management's Complex Program Leadership programs focus on the hard and soft skills necessary to successfully deliver inherently complex programs and projects, while emphasizing strategic thinking, creative problem solving, stakeholder engagement, and leadership skills as key building blocks for this goal.

  • Canada's Multi-Mission Aircraft Team

    July 10, 2023 | Information, Aerospace

    Canada's Multi-Mission Aircraft Team

    Bombardier Defense & General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada Join Forces to Deliver a Made-in-Canada Solution To deliver the next-generation of multi-mission and anti-submarine warfare aircraft that is the right solution for the Canadian Multi-Mission Aircraft (CMMA) program, Bombardier Defense is partnering with General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada. Leveraging their combined extensive expertise, these Canadian-based companies are joining forces as Canada’s Multi-Mission Aircraft Team. DISCOVER WHY CMMA MATTERS The solution offered is based on the Global 6500 aircraft, the right-sized jet for the CMMA with next-generation engines, long-range, high endurance, and coupled with proven reliability and superior fuel efficiency as documented in the jet’s recently published Environmental Product Declaration. The aircraft will play home to General Dynamics’ best-in-class integrated mission systems, drawing directly from experience developing and delivering the newly modernized CP140 Block IV and CH-148 Cyclone.   A truly innovative and flexible Canadian solution, that understands the reality of Canada, is the right choice for CMMA. 

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