FMS-ACES hosts industry day

Amy Young and Kelly Rutherford answer questions at FMS-ACES Industry Day.
Amy Young, USASAC functional lead (l.), and Kelly Rutherford, FMS-ACES product lead (r.), answer questions at FMS-ACES Industry Day. (U.S. Army photo by Laura Edwards)
Mission Area
Chris Richardson, Defense Integrated Business Systems PMO
September 26, 2023

U.S. Army Program Executive Office Enterprise Information Systems’ Foreign Military Sales – Army Case Execution System product office and the U.S. Army Security Assistance Command functional proponent held an in-person and virtual industry day Sept. 7, 2023. More than 110 individuals attended the event in-person while 137 participated virtually.

FMS-ACES Industry Day allowed the government to solicit industry comments, questions and recommendations to inform its draft other transaction authority. The FMS-ACES program seeks to connect with industry leaders for support in developing and managing prototypes of commercially available software solutions and integrated applications that will deliver a centrally managed case implementation, execution and closure system. FMS-ACES will provide security assistance, FMS case logistics, financials and close-outs, while synchronizing Army and DOD systems and introducing supply requirements for Army, DOD and international allies.

The event kicked off with remarks from Kevin Curry, project manager, Defense Integrated Business Systems. Curry discussed his past work with FMS when it was a tri-service effort back in 2015.

“Things have come full circle, and now I’m in a position today, as the PM of DIBS, where I’m seeing it come back into my portfolio,” said Curry. “What I hope to be able to do is at least leverage some of that experience and knowledge to assist Kelly [Rutherford] and her team with being able to get this solution out the door and obviously with your [industry’s] help.”  

Curry went on to discuss how FMS-ACES does not want to just replicate how it has been doing business but create a new solution that will position it for success in the future and leverage the latest technologies available through an Agile approach.

As the first PEO EIS program approved from its initiation for the Software Acquisition Pathway process, FMS-ACES wants to make sure it delivers iterative capabilities to the user, capitalizes on flexibility and agility, leverages DevSecOps and lean practices, and develops metrics to stay on track. By actively engaging users, FMS-ACES aims to tailor its process, documentation and decision points to meet user needs faster.

Following Curry’s remarks, PEO EIS Deputy PEO Bill Hepworth spoke about the direction PEO EIS is going with its Agile transformation, Army Digital Transformation and the organization’s efforts to be data-driven.

Hepworth discussed PEO EIS’ development of a Lean Agile Center of Excellence and how the acquisition organization needs to continuously adapt to shifting priorities within the Army and “expect change.” He also highlighted the organization’s adoption of Agile software development methodologies.

“We are now operating using a SAFe [Scaled Agile Framework] model … We are continuously upskilling our entire staff now, and that’s not a small feat,” he said. 

Hepworth echoed Curry’s comments about FMS-ACES being the first PEO EIS program to use the Software Acquisition Pathway. “FMS-ACES will be our pathfinder — being the first program that started Agile, will live Agile and will end Agile,” he said.

With respect to industry responses to the request for proposal, Hepworth indicated that PEO EIS will be data mesh-enabling FMS-ACES out of the gate. “We’re going to want to hear an awful lot about how the product you build is capable of sharing data cooperatively and using open data standards,” he said.

Other key industry day speakers were Kelly Rutherford, FMS-ACES product lead, and Amy Young, USASAC functional lead. Following introductory remarks, Rutherford and Young provided a program and functional overview, presented the high-level system architecture, Agile transformation strategy and information on the Army’s OTA approach. They also answered questions from industry attendees.

Rutherford wrapped up the event with her signature tagline, “FMS-ACES is going places!”

Final FMS-ACES requirements are still pending, and timelines are being developed with an Agile approach and following the Software Acquisition Pathway, DODI 5000.87. The expectation is for industry partners to provide an implementation schedule with their proposals. Upon completion of the solicitation reviews, the Army plans to enter into a white paper and prototype phase, with down-selected industry partners.

The Army is targeting full operational capability for FMS-ACES by fiscal year 2024. The FMS-ACES solicitation was released in September.

A recording of FMS-ACES Industry Day is available on the PEO EIS YouTube Channel. Learn more about the FMS-ACES product office:


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