6 Key Recommendations from the Defense Critical Supply Task Force on Supply-Chain Criticality

Jake Donnelly
August 23, 2021

The House Armed Services Committee’s Defense Critical Supply Task Force has been busy.

For months, it has been reviewing supply chain threats and vulnerabilities in the United States.

They’ve released their final report that details what they discovered, and how each issue can be met with specific actions so that the country as a whole is more secure. 

If you’re a security professional, it would be wise to pay attention to the findings of the task force’s research. There may be changes coming soon that will most certainly affect you, your employees, your organization, and your industry.

After all, nothing can be fixed, if you don’t know what’s broken.

Keep reading to find out about six important recommendations.

1. The DoD must treat supply chain security as a defense strategic priority.

The current strategy isn’t comprehensive enough.

Task Force Recommendation: A statutory requirement for a Department-wide risk assessment strategy and system for continuous monitoring, assessing, and mitigating risk in the defense supply chain.

2. DoD must have visibility on the defense supply chain to understand its vulnerabilities and develop risk mitigation strategies.

The Department shouldn’t continue relying solely on industry to provide the tools needed for risk mitigation.

Task Force Recommendation: A statutory requirement for the Department to employ commercially available tools to map the defense supply chain within one year of enactment.

3. DoD (and the U.S. in general) need to reduce reliance on adversaries for resources and manufacturing.

A significant amount of material in the Defense Industrial Base comes exclusively from China.

Task Force Recommendation: A statutory requirement to identify supplies and materials for major end items that come from adversarial nations and implement a plan to reduce reliance on those nations.

4.  DoD must use its influence to facilitate a productive public-private partnership on supply chain security.

Manufacturing has been steadily moving out of the United States. The result is a decline in demand for certain trade skills, as well as educational and training opportunities for those skills.

Task Force Recommendation: A statutory requirement for the DoD to establish a coalition among industry groups representing defense industrial base contractors, education partners, organizations providing workforce training and development, and other federal partners to focus on career development within manufacturing fields and other areas necessary to secure critical supply chains.

5. DoD should strengthen the ability to leverage close ally and partner capabilities through the National Technology and Industrial Base (NTIB).

The NTIB is not being used to its full potential in terms of shaping global policies.

Task Force Recommendation: Updating statutory authority to emphasize the value of a broad collaboration with the NTIB allies beyond acquisition, to strengthen the alliance; directing the NTIB Council to identify particular policies and regulations that could be expanded to the NTIB allies, in order to use the NTIB as a test bed for closer international cooperation and supply chain resiliency.

6. DoD should deploy the full range of American innovation to secure the supply chains involving rare earth elements.

Task Force Recommendation: A requirement for the Secretary of Defense to coordinate with both the Secretaries of Energy and Interior to ensure research and development includes the DoD’s interests.

Be Ready for Changes

As a security professional, make sure you’re prepared for the changes that will be coming as a result of the task force’s recommendations.

Software will likely play a major role in putting new strategies and frameworks in place. 

That’s where ThreatSwitch comes in: we help supply chain partners work together on security through transparency, automation, and cooperative risk management

Would you like to learn more about how we can help orsee a free demo?

Get in touch!

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