Currently the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) uses a system called Clarity to store and manage portfolios for approved programs. Some issues with Clarity are that it is redundant, not user-friendly or automated to accommodate program updates, and it is contractor owned (the contractor's 'CA' symbol is placed on the Clarity homepage, no AFRL symbol can be found). This is a clear case where the quality of program information storage and retrieval is reduced but at a higher cost. Additionally, administrative tasks are complicated and repetitive, and the speed of providing pertinent program information across AFRL, AF or DoD is reduced due to this lack of automation from Clarity.
Bottom line is Clarity does not synchronize with other AFRL, AF, or DoD systems to obtain program information. Rather that burden is on the assigned science and technology (S&T) program managers, typically at the GS 15, 14, or 13 levels, have to input this information themselves when a program is initiated, and every time it is updated or reviewed; an extremely high cost incurred by the government for data-entry tasks, all for information that exists elsewhere within AFRL, AF, or DoD. To pay an engineer to perform repetitive data entry is not only expensive, but takes away his/her focus from the mission of discovering and developing technologies for the AF and DoD.
One solution would be for AFRL, AF, or DoD to search internally for portfolio management systems that are government developed and owned and exceed the capabilities of systems like Clarity. Government owned systems do exist that exceed what Clarity can do for efficient and effective portfolio management. Being government owned means reduced costs in development, as well as having a stronger innovative focus on workforce requirements. This is one way of ensuring the information system is most effective for maintaining official program records and making pertinent information available across the AF & DoD.