Date Signed: 2/14/2022 | MARADMINS Number: 049/22
MARADMINS : 049/22

R 141330Z FEB 22
POC/HANK COSTA/CIV/ UNIT: DC I IC4/TEL: 571-256-9081//
GENTEXT/REMARKS/1.  Purpose.  This MarAdmin serves as the call for participation in the Microsoft Office 365 (O365) Software as a Service (SAAS) Application Development Innovation Challenge.  DC I is seeking talented people from across the Marine Corps to develop and submit O365 SAAS applications that will improve individual and unit readiness and mission effectiveness.  O365 is a suite of cloud-based productivity and collaboration applications that includes Microsoft Office Applications, OneDrive, SharePoint Online, Power Bi, Power Apps, Power Automate, Planner, Forms, and Teams.  O365 SAAS applications are applications that are developed using elements of O365 capabilities that allow users to connect to and use cloud-based apps.  This Innovation Challenge is intended for uniformed and civilian Marines to take advantage of the Marine Corps’ investment in the O365 suite of capabilities and produce meaningful SAAS applications that can increase productivity beyond their local unit or command, across any one or more warfighting functions.  Participants are encouraged to consider developing applications that support Talent Management 2030, one of our Commandant’s top priorities.  The challenge is open to reservists in a duty status, but is not open to contractors or other non-Marine Corps personnel.  In accordance with policy, participants are authorized to utilize Marine Corps resources such as time, equipment, and facilities (with permission of their respective Chain of Command).
2.  Background.  As part of the Marine Corps’ Covid-19 response, we accelerated our migration to O365.  That transition fundamentally changed some of our day-to-day operations.  The evolving information environment is expanding and enhancing how we operate, train, collaborate, and share and disseminate enterprise data.  To operate successfully within this modern environment, we must embrace these emerging capabilities and actively develop and hone our technical skills.  We have an opportunity for the Marine Corps to lead the other military services by embracing this new technology and maximizing its organic capabilities through the development of productivity and collaboration tools.
3.  Concept of Operations.
3.a.  Scheme of Maneuver.  The 2022 Microsoft O365 Innovation Challenge will run from February to June 2022 and will be conducted in three phases:  Phase 1, Planning and Registration; Phase 2, Execution; and Phase 3, Evaluation and Award.
3.a.1.  Phase 1:  Planning and Registration.  Phase 1 commences with the release of this message, and ends on February 28, 2022.  In this phase, prospective participants develop their initial proposals and register for the challenge at the 2022 USMC Innovation Challenge SharePoint site https:(slash)(slash)
3.a.2.  Phase 2:  Execution.
3.a.2.a.  Phase 2, Stage A:  training.  Participants will be provided training on O365 capabilities.  Training will include self-paced online tutorials through the enterprise skills initiative at (enterprise skills initiative ( https:(slash)(slash) and instructor-led training.  DC I will host the instructor-led training by Microsoft, to facilitate technical orientation to the Microsoft tools.  The training stage will also include a two day Hack-A-Thon with O365 subject matter experts from Microsoft.  The Hack-A-Thon will begin with an in-depth overview of developing applications in the O365 platform, along with a deep exploration of the technologies available for use.
3.a.2.b.  Phase 2, Stage B: SAAS application development.  Participants develop their application during a 90-day sprint.  Participants will perform their SAAS application development from their present duty station via the Marine Corps Enterprise Network (MCEN).  No travel is required during this stage.
3.a.3.  Phase 3:  Evaluation.
3.a.3.1.  Phase 3, Stage A:  Demonstration.  Participants demonstrate their final product to the Information and Knowledge Management (IKM) Steering Group at HQMC DCI.  Participants must declare their intent to demonstrate their developed application by registering at the 2022 Innovation Challenge site.
3.a.3.2.  Phase 3, Stage B:  Evaluation and Award.  The IKM steering group will collaborate with other subject matter experts to evaluate and identify the top 10 applications developed by participants.  The three major evaluation criteria for each application are:  (1) applicability across the Marine Corps (beyond an individual unit or location) (2) ease of use; and (3) the potential to decrease workload and increasing efficiency.  The top 10 candidates will further demonstrate their product to Director, IC4, who will evaluate and rank the top three developed applications.
4.  Scope.  This challenge is restricted to the unclassified network.  Proposals should not include active interface or interoperability with existing programs of record.  Applications will be solely developed by the participants and must not include any third party or open source coding or other materials.  Participants are prohibited from reverse engineering, decompiling or disassembling ,or working around any technical limitations of any Microsoft product(without pre-approval).  Data injects to support SAAS application development should only include sourcing data that is already within the Microsoft O365 environment.  The participants are limited to capabilities included in the O365 suite of capabilities for the O365 environment.  Participants are prohibited from sharing or otherwise distributing or providing access to their applications to anyone not authorized by the sponsors of the 2022 USMC innovation challenge without prior written approval by DC I.
5.  Incentives.  The developers of the top 10 applications and the 3 winners of the challenge will be recognized with a variety of awards.  In addition to this recognition of participants’ talent and initiative, the applications developed through the challenge will be considered for transition to a Marine Corps-wide enterprise resource.  Innovation challenge winners will also have an opportunity to conduct an out brief with senior leaders and showcase their products.
5.  Timeline.
5.a.  NLT 28 Feb 2022:  Participants register proposal ideas and contact information at https:(slash)(slash)
5.b.  21-25 MAR 2022:  DCI IKM will coordinate with Microsoft and participants to provide dates for a 2 day Hack-A-Thon event.  There will be multiple training sessions to facilitate scheduling for participants’ different locations and work schedules.  Information on training and dates for the Hack-A-Thon will be posted to the 2022 Innovation Challenge site.
5.c.  NLT 3 JUN 2022: Participants update their proposals on the 2022 Innovation Challenge site with a link to the application and supporting documentation; which may include user guides, administrative documentation, and other pertinent information about the application.
5.d.  1 - 10 JUN 2022:  DCI IKM coordinates with all participants who completed applications.
5.e.  16 JUN 2022:  USMC IKM Steering Group reviews completed applications and identifies the top 10 applications.
5.f.  20 – 24 JUN 2022:  The developers of the top 10 applications demonstrate those applications to the steering group; the top 3 are chosen as the challenge winners.
5.g.  30 JUN 2022:  DCI IKM notifies the winners and posts the results on the 2022 Innovation Challenge site.
6.  Admin and Logistics.
6.a.  Due to the circumstances in consideration of, or associated with, the opportunity provided to the participants in association with the participant’s application development efforts (including, without limitation, USMC’s authorization for use of government resources including duty time and government equipment and information), all products, items, and materials created, generated, submitted for, and/or associated with this challenge shall be delivered to and are the property of the USMC.
6.b.  Participants will review the Innovation Challenge website for additional information, guidance, and submission materials; and shall comply with the terms and conditions detailed on the 2022 Innovation Challenge website.  This may include a requirement to sign an assignment document, which shall be submitted along with each participant’s application.
7.  Command and Control.  Commanders and supervisors are encouraged to support participation of all Marines and civilian employees that desire to participate in this event, and are further encouraged to allow participants to use duty/work hours and unit resources during the course of this challenge.
8.  Funding.  HQMC IC4 will support all funding in support of the Innovation Challenge; all funding must be pre-approved.
9.  Release authorized by BGen J. Matos, Director, Information C4 Division, Deputy Commandant for Information.//