Benefits, Costs and Risks of Converting from Military Design Specifications to Commercial Performance Standards at a Commercial Laboratory   [open pdf - 6MB]

"In February 1996, Major General George E. Friel, Commander, U.S. Army Chemical, Biological Defense Command (CBDCOM) signed the first four waivers under his reinvention authority. These waivers allowed contractor laboratories to operate under commercial per Ordnance standards in their work with small quantities of chemical agents. Throughout the process of converting from detail specifications to performance specifications, performance parameters were measured. During the design of these performance metrics, there were no thoughts of recording the costs to each contractor laboratory while converting their plans and procedures. The business risks to the contractors were also not measured. This thesis investigates the benefits, costs and tasks of converting from detail specifications to performance standards in an environment of reinvention. Since reinvention and conversion to performance standards are major Department of Defense (DOD) thrusts, the investigation of related benefits, costs and risks is timely. The research includes a case study of one of the National Institutes involved in the conversion process. The Institute chosen is Midwest Research Institute (MRI) in Kansas City, Missouri."

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