Department of Defense Joint Program in Communication

Outsourcing Military Public Affairs

At a time when many aspects of the military are being successfully outsourced, the United States military may be well served to determine how to enhance the success of outsourcing its public affairs functions.

This paper will explore four theories that should be considered in order to address this.

The theories are structurational theory of climate; organizational assimilation; uncertainty reduction theory; and anxiety uncertainty management theory.

It is through the application of these theories that the success of outsourcing will be enhanced. A primary step in implementing the outsourcing of public affairs in the military includes research to determine the current climate within the organization in order to effectively assimilate outsiders into the job.

A move into the complex and often-misunderstood culture of the military requires increased awareness of potential pitfalls and misfirings.

Corporate cultures differ widely and the transition of outsourced personnel into the military way of life without adequate training and indoctrination may not be effective.

Training is required to help acculturate new workers into the foreign environment. Equally important though, is the requirement to overcome resistance to change from within the military.

Because the military will be initializing this program, it falls upon it to design, structure and support an integration program that will reduce uncertainty of the new employees and allow military members to accept these "outsiders" into the organization as full members.


About the program

The A-Team

The Paper

DoD Links