Nordic Combat Uniform project will shape future Nordic procurement
Nordic Combat Uniform project will shape future Nordic procurement

The experiences from the Nordic Combat Uniform project (NCU) is high on the agenda for NORDEFCO Cooperation Area Armaments.

Representatives from the project management group (PMG) within the Nordic Combat uniform project were invited to exchange their experiences as lessons identified and learned in a meeting in Helsinki this February. NORDEFCO has a strong interest in how to utilize the experiences the project has gained during the co-operation. The experiences from the NCU, together with experiences made at other levels within NORDEFCO, will constitute a practical guide for future pan-Nordic projects. NORDEFCO has begun developing a joint Nordic guideline on how to precede in Nordic procurement projects. The guideline will be named NORDEFCO Project Development Guide (NPDG). The goal is to provide guidance on how to structure future projects, processes, identifying legal and mercantile challenges, as well as how to navigate within the Nordic cultural diverse communities.

Through the Policy Steering Committee (PSC), the Nordic material directors will adopt the NPDG as a common Nordic document. The respective Nordic procurements organizations should incorporate the guide as part of their own document hierarchy regarding Nordic procurements. It is expected that the PSC will adopt and begin the implementation of the NPDG at the NORDEFCOs autumn meeting in 2019.

The importance of structure and lines of communication in the project organization are key take-aways from the NCU project in 2018. Another take-away is the strong involvements by communication departments in the preparation of a communication strategy. The use of communication tools, improves of both internal and external communication, i.e “Key messages” to be established across the borders to form a common picture and a joint roadmap.

Another lesson identified and learned is the need of interdisciplinary structure to handle upcoming tasks. To meet tasks of more complex nature, Task Forces (TF) have been established. The TF’s are established for a defined period of time to work on specific tasks and subject matter expertise from relevant contributors participates. All nations are represented in order to benefit from knowledge gained across nations and to ensure that each country’s requirements are met. The TF becomes so-called “small projects in the project.” Thus far the TF’s have proven effective tools.

Establishing trust is of high importance within the project group to ensure progress and work of high quality. Trust is a key element in allowing everyone’s opinion to be voiced, even to allow disagreements to arise. When a working environment is transparent, discussions and inputs are handled in a respectful manner, solutions are found and a common ground is created. At the same time there must be a mutual understanding that decisions are made based on an equal desire to realize the best possible Nordic Combat Uniforms for all member-nations.