Ryan M. Novak

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Timothy S. Reed, PhD


The escalating use of contractors on the battlefield in highly critical operational areas is a trend that is increasing across the DoD. Contractors have a vital role supporting CONUS missions, but they are also on the battlefield in defense of our nation, supporting the warfighter and their weapon systems. As the use of contractors on the battlefield continues to gain favor within the DoD, and as contractor s roles continue to expand and become more critical, it is imperative to improve the current way that the DoD, and specifically Air Force acquisition professionals, procure such services. This research analyzes inputs from DoD Policy Experts, Contractor Policy Experts, Army Policy Experts, Air Force Policy Experts, and 13 Air Force Program Offices that use contractors on the battlefield to support, maintain, and/or troubleshoot their weapon systems. Content analysis and pattern matching were used to determine the current status of battlefield acquisition, draw conclusions, and make recommendations. Several problem areas in this area of acquisition were identified as well as best practices and lessons learned.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number