This article compares the results of three research initiatives to identify obstacles that commercial firms in the electronics, space launch, and aircraft industries face in doing business with the defense department. It also assesses the benefits of using commercial buying practices. The research supports previous research findings that some obstacles, such as payment and specification problems, appear to be universal problems for firms dealing with government customers. However, just as the electronics, space launch, and aircraft industries have different industry characteristics, there are also unique defense procurement problems that restrict commercial firms in the industries from selling to the Department of Defense. The research suggests that while DoD should examine its overall contracting process and requirements to make it easier for commercial firms to accept and perform government contracts, it must also focus on industry unique obstacles to gain the greatest benefit.
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