Tuesday, March 23, 2010

MDA Chief goes Salamander

Lt. Gen. Patrick O'Reilly, USA - I need to buy you a few beers.
A senior Pentagon official told missile-defense contractors yesterday "quality control" of industry products is so poor it has risen to be one of the preeminent problems facing the Missile Defense Agency (MDA). "I have gone to a point where I am withholding funding for current contracts because I don't see the level of certainty and the level of culture necessary for the precision work that's required," MDA Director Army Lt. Gen. Patrick O'Reilly said at a Washington conference.
Does he need Joint Credit somewhere? I can sure think of a few Navy jobs we need him at.
O'Reilly, who has led MDA for roughly a year now, called for "culture change" and "personnel changes" in industry.

"Replace people, fire people, do whatever you've got to do," he said at the conference full of defense contractors. "But we've got to have the change in the culture so you produce precision instruments in which many of these capabilities are, or (you have to) redesign so that we can then take advantage of greater tolerances."

He said the government also contributed to quality-control shortcomings, and "the blame's on all of us."
My heart is all a'flutter.

Hat tip YNSN.

16 comments:

Byron said...

Navy needs to steal him away and put him in charge of shipbuilding and conversion. Would love to hear him addressing NG and LM and take them to the wood shed.

ewok40k said...

and he got effects... GBI hit rate went up from 70% to 90% during test period... Sadly none will be deployed in Poland because Iran is testing satellite launch rockets already. Next stop ICBM?

Steeljaw said...

Umm, before getting too warm and cuddly, might want to talk with some who have observed him up close for several years...also reccall that MDA, unlike the Services, does not have to go through the JCIDS requirements process and is exempt from the normal procurement processes the rest of DoD works under.  That has had both good and "other" effects over the years and will, I guaruntee, have a blowback effect beginning about 5 years from now.

That said, this particular molotov cocktail desperately needed to be tossed through certain contractors' windows and hopefully, will have the desired effect.
- SJS

cdrsalamander said...

I'm game - give me the downside.  

Anonymous said...

He's gonna get fired for not blaming the lack of quality control on a lack of diversity in the contractor's workforce.

XBradTC said...

Uh, that's me up there.

Anonymous said...

Wasnt mda the ones who changed their logo to look more like Obama logo?

Skippy-san said...

If you actually had to work under the man-you might be more selective about buying him a beer.

As SJS pointed out to you-there are downsides-especially if you want the capability promised when we said we would deliver.

Skippy-san said...

The Phased Adaptive Approach will deliver capability against those Iranian missiles long before the Polish GBI's ever would. The PAA architechture that MDA is working on will be a good thing for us and Europe.

Skippy-san said...

Byron,

  I respect you too much to inflict that on you. There are better alternatives out there.

cdrsalamander said...

Worse than Ulrich?

MR T's Haircut said...

<span>no ONE was worse than Ulrich..</span>

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Skippy-san said...

Think Ulrich in Army green.

steeljawscribe said...

Phib:

  Check email...

w/r, SJS

WaywardSailor said...

This is not a new problem.  Back in the mid-80s, Raytheon almost lost the Patriot missile contract because the quality was so poor.  The company stood down the manufacturing plant for a day and brought in the Army Brigadier in charge of the program.  His speech to the assembled employees centered on two things: 1) many of you have sons and daughters who will rely on this system in the field - what's going to happen to them if it doesn't work because you didn't care about the quality of your work? and 2) poor quality = cancelled contract = closed plant and no jobs.  The message came through loud and clear, to the point that 7 years later, Bush 41 visited during Desert Storm to praise the Patriot's performance and the efforts of the people who built the missile system.