A Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW) employee was honored during the 2018 Women of Color (WOC) Sciences, Technologies, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) conference Oct. 11-14 in Detroit.
Angela Ingram-Smith, an FRCSW acquisition program specialist, was one of four STEM “Technology Rising Star” winners. She received the award for her work within the command’s acquisition planning and procurement organization.
The WOC STEM conference is designed to help and provide women with methods to improve their career and educational goals.
Ingram-Smith began her career at FRCSW in 2012 as an administrative assistant for the Industrial and Logistics Maintenance Planning /Sustainment Department.
She transferred to her current position three years later.
Holding a bachelor’s degree in business management and certification (Level 1) from Naval Air Systems Command’s (NAVAIR) program management in acquisition, Ingram-Smith spends much of her time handling the service contracts and purchases vital to the command’s operations, and also provides training on the use of government credit cards.
Her desire to improve the efficiency of the command’s acquisition procedures led her to target unauthorized commitment/purchases (UAC).
“A UAC is when customers purchase items, supplies or services without authorization to first do so,” she said. “It was an ongoing issue; and because of the increase in numbers of UACs, we identified that we needed to put a process in place to address the issue.”
Personnel who bypass proper procedures for procuring supplies or services often experience prolonged wait times before their requests are resolved.
“The longest UAC to process has been over a year. I have one right now, a request for a service, that we identified in February 2017. It was just awarded this month, October 2018, as the vendor just signed off on the modification.”
“Had it been a properly authorized request for service, this could have been fulfilled in a few months,” she said.
Leading a team of six others, Ingram-Smith designed and created a software program which digitized the UAC process, which is in support of the NAVAIR/Commander, Fleet Readiness Centers Vision 2020 Acquisition Master Plan.
“It took us about six months of planning, and in that process, we decided to add three training classes for our customers,” she noted.
The digitized UAC contains folders of the required documents for procurement and services. Once complete the folders are routed from the originator to the originator’s supervisor for sign-off, and then through the remaining signature chain.
“The program is currently in use here, but we are still in the process of rolling it out and placing the program on SharePoint,” she said.
She added that the program has been shared with other commands, including FRCs East and Southeast.
“I don’t know where they are with the process, but my understanding is they like the program. Of course I don’t know how many unauthorized commitments they have, but they are using this as a model to adapt to their specific needs.”
The digitized UAC program is tentatively scheduled to be loaded onto SharePoint by mid-2019.