Spot-On Contracting: Improving Transparency & Contractor Personnel Monitoring in Contingency Operations
Journal of Contract Management, p. 17, Summer 2012
19 Pages Posted: 25 Sep 2012
Date Written: 2012
Contractors in today’s military operations perform a wide variety of functions in support of the U.S. mission abroad. The federal government, however, has been unable to adequately keep track of the number of contractor personnel it employs and the activities contractors perform in the battlespace. To improve contractor monitoring on the battlefield, the Defense Department, the State Department, and USAID have implemented the Synchronized Pre-Deployment and Operational Tracker (“SPOT”). SPOT is a centralized interagency database that allows agency officials to access information on the identities and activities of their contractors, subcontractors, and contractor personnel employed in contingency settings. This article explores the potential capabilities of this database and examines its current limitations on the ability of agency officials to meaningfully capture and utilize contractor information. Ultimately, SPOT’s success as a monitoring tool will depend on the willingness of DOD, State, and USAID to coordinate their efforts to improve contractor oversight.
Keywords: SPOT, military contractors, private security contractors, Iraq, Afghanistan, technology, monitoring, oversight, accountability, public procurement
JEL Classification: K10, K20, K23, K30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation