Air Force nears finish line on massive ERP project

The Air Force is entering the stretch run of implementing its massive, multibillion dollar financial management system, an enterprise resource planning initiative to consolidate all of its ERP systems into one organization.

The service’s Life Cycle Management Center has awarded a $77.8 million contract to Accenture Federal Services for the final phase of the Defense Enterprise Accounting Management System, according to a defense department release.

DEAMS is the Air Force’s effort to comply with the Defense Department’s Financial Improvement and Audit Readiness Plan. It was first implemented at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., in May 2010. Other early-deployment sites include the Defense Finance and Accounting Service, McConnell Air Force Base, Kan., Joint base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Servicewide deployment was to start gaining steam during the summer.

Initiated in 2003, DEAMS has, like just about any large, long-term IT project, seen its life cycles costs balloon—from a projected $1.1 billion to an estimated $2.2 billion—and its expected completion dates slip. Once expected to be fully deployed in 2014, the Air Force is now targeting April 2017. Along the way, it’s taken its fair share of hits from the Government Accountability Office and the DOD Inspector General, for failures ranging from a lack of thorough risk analysis to defects in software code.

In the final phase, DEAMS eventually will be implemented at every Air Force base around the world.

About the Author

Kevin McCaney is a former editor of Defense Systems and GCN.

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