WASHINGTON, June 27, 2012 – For their savvy in tackling modern acquisition and improvement issues with an eye on cost control, 48 individuals and teams earned Defense Department recognition during the Value Engineering Awards ceremony today.
Frank Kendall, undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, described value engineering as a critical component of DOD’s “Better Buying Power” program, designed to reduce costs while increasing capabilities.
“Everyone involved in the value engineering program — especially those who we’re honoring today — adds value to the department’s force structure and capability by the work that they do,” Kendall said at the event, adding that the program identifies and eliminates unnecessary costs while maintaining or improving performance.
The program, he said, not only fosters analysis of system functions, equipment, facilities, services and supplies, but also rewards all involved.
“They do not just accept the status quo and continue to do their jobs,” Kendall said of the awardees. “They identify ways to improve things and they act on those things — that initiative is central to what we’re recognizing here today.”
Value engineering experts, Kendall explained, develop critical questions about the performance and associated costs of particular systems, ultimately allowing DOD to identify and prioritize needs while increasing quality and curtailing inefficiencies.
“By virtue of asking these questions, individuals and teams working in the department’s value engineer program have achieved more than $51 billion in savings since the program started in 1980,” Kendall said, noting more than $4 billion of that savings occurred during fiscal year 2011.
“In addition to those cost savings, value engineering ensures our warfighters are equipped to face the diverse, emerging threats of the world today,” Kendall added.
Award winners from each military component are selected from one of the following five categories: program/project, individual, team, organization, and contractor, officials said. Additionally, joint service and special awards are given to recognize innovative applications or approaches that expand the traditional scope of value engineering use.