Now That’s Incentive

William LaPlante, assistant secretary of the Air Force for acquisition, said too often people ask the wrong questions when debating the best contract structure for military acquisition. “Fixed-price versus cost-plus is the false debate. It actually turns out that they both perform about the same, provided they’re used on the right contract,” said LaPlante Sept. 16 at AFA’s Air & Space Conferene in National Harbor, Md. “What is statistically different is whether you use [an] incentive or reward” contract structure. Incentive-based contracts win out, he said. “There is statistically better cost schedule performance” when you put incentives in, he said. LaPlante said these findings will be heavily reflected in the Better Buying Power 3.0 acquisition program Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics Frank Kendall is expected to unveil later this week.