9. Non-Development Item
A Non-Developmental Item (NDI) is an available resource from a wide variety
of sources requiring little to no development for its use by the government.
NDIs include any item of supply that is:
- Available in the commercial marketplace.
- Previously developed and in use by a U.S. department or agency, a state
or local government, or a foreign government with which the U.S has a mutual
defense cooperation agreement.
- Available but requires only minor modification in order to meet the
requirements of the contracting agency.
- Currently being produced that does not meet the requirements of the
items described above solely because the item is not yet in use or is not
yet available commercially.
The application of NDI to an acquisition should be viewed as a matter of
degree rather than an all-or-nothing proposition. NDI utilization reduces
development cost and time. They should also be assessed by the amount of
modification needed. As the extent of NDI modification decreases, time and
development cost are reduced. Many NDI opportunities only require modifying an
existing item (e.g., ruggedize, militarize) before incorporating it into a
larger element of a system.
A predominant use of an NDI is within subsystem, equipment, component, and
piece part levels in major developmental programs. These opportunities should
be explored as part of the system engineering and system integration process.
The use of NDIs in satisfying approved operational requirements could involve
a combination of items (e.g., commercial, individual or joint service,
foreign, or standard DoD) coupled with and integrated into a significant
developmental effort. The major benefits of NDI acquisitions include:
- Quick response to operational needs.
- Elimination or reduction of research and development costs.
- Application of state-of-the-art technology to current
- Reduction of technical, cost, and schedule