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Contracting and Industrial Management (97)
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Functional area description. The contracting function is a major segment of the Army Acquisition process which provides, through execution of contracts and related contract management responsibilities, materiels and services required to accomplish the Army and DoD missions. The FA 97 officer performs those func­tional duties which are intended to utilize the inventive and produc­tive capabilities of government and industry to provide the weapons, ammunition, aircraft, missiles, vehicles, electronics and other essen­tial materiel and services required by the Army and DoD. Func­tional Area 97 officers are faced with the challenge of bridging the management gap between civilian industry and the military, along with ensuring the Defense acquisition process procures the required weapon systems, supplies and services to support and sustain the readiness of our combat forces.

Functional area qualifications.

Qualifications. Must be branch qualified and possess at least a baccalaureate degree preferably in the business, industrial en­gineering, or management fields. Advanced degrees are preferred in contracting/procurement systems management/engineering and business areas. Must attend the Management of Defense Contracts Basic Course prior to first assignment in the functional areas. Completion of DoD mandatory curriculum is required for specific job functions, assignments and grade levels.

Tracks. There are three tracks a FA 97 officer may choose:

(a) Dual track. After an entry level assignment in the functional area, officers may alternate between branch and functional area assignments.

(b) Single track. Officers will have repetitive assignments in the functional area.

(c) MAM track. Officers will attend the MAM basic course and pursue experiences that support certification as a MAM officer. Completion of the Defense Systems Management College twenty week program management course is mandatory for certification. All FA 97 assignments support the MAM qualification requirements.

Training with Industry. A unique feature of the FA 97 professional development program is the opportunity for selected officers to gain firsthand knowledge of the working of defense contractor operations through the TWI program. This is an entry level one year training program in a contractor’s plant with a mandatory follow-on utilization tour with the Defense Logistics Agency or the Army Materiel Command (AMC). Participation is by application with only those officers who have demonstrated potential for continued out-standing service being selected. See DA Pam 600-3 for a complete list of qualifications for entry and professional development in this FA.

Contracting and Industrial Management Officer (97A).

Description of duties.

(a) Responsible for the overall development, implementation, management, direction and control of procurement programs, program planning and general supervision of major procurement activities or functions. Specific responsibilities include: preparation and coordination of advanced procurement planning; procurement pro-gram cost/budget forecasting; determination of contracting methodology; selection, formulation and review of contract types; evaluation of contract cost/price and decision risk analysis; implementation/management of systems/programs management, ensuring competition management goals are achieved while acting as the principal technical advisor to commanders and civilian officials Army-wide.

(b) The FA 97 officer is warranted (authorized) to legally obligate the U.S. Government. They enter into and terminate binding contractual agreements with a wide variety of corporate/government entities. Specific duties and responsibilities include: Negotiating and contracting for commodities (such as, major end items of equipment, weapons systems, spare and repair parts, ammunition, troop support items, a wide variety of commodity command managed items, facilities and systems, as well as design, maintenance and support services); analyzing and determining the suitability of requests for purchase; preparing the formal contracts and ensuring that all government terms/specifications/legal requirements and restric­tions are incorporated and met as appropriate; establishing and man-aging the qualified bidders list; initiating/administrating invitations for bid, requests for proposal/solicitations to industry; conducting extensive managerial, industrial and financial capability analyses and evaluations to determine corporate responsiveness and responsibility prior to award; conducting formal government bid opening conferences with industry, while awarding, managing and terminat­ing government contracts.

(c) The FA 97 officers are also responsible for applying industri­al, manufacturing and production technical expertise within the procurement function. Specific responsibilities include: conducting technical analyses of contractors’ manufacturing/production capabilities; conducting major system acquisition should cost

Special qualifications. None.

Special grading of positions.

(a) Contracting Officer (CPT/MAJ).

(b) Contract Administrator (CPT/MAJ).

(c) Director/Chief of Contracting (LTC/COL).

(d) Product Manager (LTC).

(e) Assistant Project Manager (LTC).

(f) Commander of a Defense Contract Administration Region, Management Area or Production Plant (LTC/COL).

(g) Commander of an Army Contracting Command (COL).

(h) Director of Procurement and Production (COL).

(i) Project Manager (COL).

Unique duty positions. None.

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Above information derived from Army Pamplet Manual 611-21

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