To understand the significance of the changes under way and the ones about to take place, Tom Essig, acting chief procurement officer for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), says it is important to take a look at where procurement processes stood just a few years ago. A study conducted several years ago to help the department determine how many contracting specialists it needed estimated that, given its mission and additional contracting administration responsibilities, the department still needed an additional 600 to 1,500 contracting specialists for due diligence alone.\n While the department is looking for mistakes it has made, it is not conducting the search to fix them after the fact. In terms of future spending in the science and technology field, Essig explains that the department is examining how to emulate the technology readiness levels the U.S. Defense Department currently uses.
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