Key objectives of this Report include outlining flexible & effective equipment upgrade/repair simulation case approach designed to be tailored & affordable for time/cost to support site visit executive implementation of recently updated upgrade/repair policy.
Here we present overall simulation processes, common sets of logistics cost elements, measures of effectiveness & new simulation frameworks alongside factors to consider when assessing & subsequently conducting executive site visit designed to improve operational performance.
Executive site visits to date have shaped an understanding of areas that equipment upgrade/repair capabilities might benefit programme/systems to support go/no go decision making & subsequent site operation improvements utilising justifiable information.
Upgrade/repair simulations are characterised by smart application & integration of appropriate processes, technologies & survey information-based capabilities to improve reliability & operational effectiveness of DoD systems & components.
At its core, upgrade/repair simulations during site visits are based on evidence of requirements provided by operational work order creation alongside other enabling processes & technologies. Equipment upgrade/repair simulations utilise systems engineering approaches to collect survey information, enable detailed assessments & support decision‐making processes for system acquisition, operations & sustainment.
In evaluating potential upgrade/repair site capabilities like technologies, work order processes, or information applications, simulations are designed to address these areas in comprehensive & consistent manner, particularly when incremental acquisition or fielding strategy is being considered.
Although the basic concept & purpose of equipment upgrade/repair simulations have generally been addressed by DoD, many interpretations exist regarding assessment of work order capabilities to ensure appropriate & accurate considerations are given to operational capabilities, logistics costs & benefits to mission requirements.
So, what is an upgrade/repair simulation? Requirements for simulations include decision support site visit operations identifying operational alternatives as well as presenting convincing logistics, economic, risk & technical arguments for selection & implementation to achieve stated organisational objectives/imperatives. Simulations do not replace smart judgment of decision makers, but provides for site visit assessments providing uniform foundations upon which sound operational decisions can be made.
The subject of equipment upgrade/repair simulations must include any significant operational decisions being contemplated by site visit executive. For example, Simulations have been designed to substantiate case to acquire new mission-critical systems, but not at the same level as Capabilities Based Assessments, transformation of logistics operations, or establishment of automated training curriculums.
In general, Simulations are designed to answer the following question: What are the likely fiscal & operational consequences if site visit executive decides to execute implementations of improvements in ordering mission decision/action?
The possibility exists that any projected logistics cost reductions identified in simultions could be viewed as an asset available for reallocation in the budgeting process. In evaluating the potential application of equipment upgrade/repair capabilities at work sites, it’s important to address desired end states from perspectives of key performance metrics & assumptions impacting logistics operations in system-wide capacities.
Here we outline general approaches to define outcomes desired by DoD for Equipment Upgrade/Repair Simulations, understand/define the problem & detail desired end state. This approach focuses on As-Is system trends, evaluating Measures of Effectiveness, their logistics cost drivers & key performance metrics designed to determine if planned work orders represent viable solutions to mission requirements. If so, site visit executive must determine what work order capabilities are applicable & use this information to define & carry out feasible solutions.
Equipment Upgrade/Repair site visit Scoping Questions provide some general questions and guidance to relate concepts accurately to DoD initiatives. We present example Answers to these questions so work sites are provided with information & new approaches to support upgrade/repair implementation. As you plan your Simulation, our example answers to these questions could assist in framing your general approach/strategy to ensure your Simulation is adequately defined & scoped to address key operational Issues:
1. What contract strategies impacting cost/schedule have effect on projected impacts of system/component level replacement frequency?
Equipment upgrade/repair capability can provide source/capability information to determine projected long-term sustainment estimates mission requirement decisions, work order task frequency, etc. DoD must define scope of Simulation to ensure equipment diagnostic/trending information is used to define assumptions & establish system/component sustainment baseline based on assessments of overall Logistics cost/benefit to operations. DoD must ensure contracts impacting implementation of upgrade/repair capability are considered when defining scope of Simulaton. The impact on/from related equipment contracts should be addressed in risk assessment & condition monitor portion of site visit.
2. What cost, schedule & performance risk is projected based on proposed technology for procurement, implementation & reduction/elimination of sustainment functions/tasks performed in excess of mission requirements?
Equipment Upgrade/Repair Simulations must provide DoD with conclusions/recommendations regarding technology maturity levels & risk associated with adoption technology, including site visit surveys regarding cost, schedule, and performance. Simulations must identify potential functions, tasks, or systems/components to be impacted by upgrade/repair operations. Required level of detail generated by Simulation is based on existing equipment system condition & status of site visit assessment & what operational information is available. To the maximum extent possible, identification of current upgrade/repair capability in terms of functional areas such as equipment condition detection, isolation, prediction, reporting, assessment,decision‐support execution & recovery, to be carried out both on & off‐board.
3. What collected sourced/limited information on upgrade/repair decision making must be automated to reduce logistics support costs involved in sustainment activities?
DoD must ensure specific logistics processes utilise upgrade/repair site visit tools/capabilities such as trending, diagnostics and/or prognostics are defined & any potential work order tasks, functions & measures of equipment metrics affected by such tools are clearly communicated. Early planning for automated information collection is required & must examine each element/ metrics to source & determine of what factors will be brought to bear on its accuracy. While collection of all elements is beneficial, discriminating response elements must focus of condition metrics planning approach. Good results are best accomplished by engaging site visit operators in discussions as early as possible in acquisition phase of mission-critical equipment. Authoritative source for each information element must be established along with availability determinations created early in Simulation planning process.
4. Does upgrade/repair initiative improve/modify ability to design new or current sustained systems hitting schedule/cost/tech Goals?
DoD must Identify any mission-critical equipment system-specific capability proposed upgrade/repair operations to improve condition of existing system or for projected future increments. Identify specific incremental capabilities & automated external systems interfaces utilised by work site can be designed to enhance functional properties such as connectivity to near real -time/real –time equipment system condition assessments., work order task frequency, etc. Establishment of well-defined scope of the Simulation can be utilised to ensure diagnostic/trending information is used to define assumptions and establish system/component baseline from which overall logistics cost/ benefit can be assessed. Specific appropriate metrics include work order planning, automated Supply line connection Support, installation structure quality & quick transport functions. Logistics cost element structure must ensure that the desired mission requirements & levels of detail are defined & assessed to support proposed upgrade/repair capability. Logistics operational drivers should be clearly defined & will usually vary depending on capability determined during site visit to include sensors, diagnostics, prognostics, etc. useful in defining logistics cost element structure.
5. How will equipment system/subsystem subject to upgrade/repair affect changes to operator/user incremental performance levels for new product solutions to mission requirements?
DoD must Identify known impacts to equipment upgrade/repair capability to ensure appropriate qualitative/quantitative metrics are included to define impacts to system operation & sustainment policy, changes to tactics, techniques & procedures. Planned sustainment strategies must be identified to define how it will fit with the acquisition strategy of equipment system it supports. Upgrade/repair increments must be communicated as clearly as possible during site visit & ensure boundaries/ interfaces with existing logistics, Command & Control, and/or mission-critical systems are adequately described in tight relationship to condition metrics.
6. How will upgrade/repair decision/plans affect integrated operational impact of DoD systems & what capabilities influence sustainment margins/downtime?
When equipment upgrade/repair simulation is focused on specific system/sub-systems or components, DoD must ensure project scope, logistics cost elements & work orders are tailored according to sound, fundamental principles employed during site visits. DoD must utilise existing site visit techniques & historical information, projected mission requirement estimates, any phased upgrade/repair capability increments & planned system/subsystem or component enhancements, wherever possible. DoD must Identify system/sub‐system and/or components where projected upgrade/repair capability will have direct/indirect effect on planned modernisation improvements. Simulations must identify specific systems with direct automation or integration requirements to include clearly defined assumptions & timing of supply line connections associated with operational integration. In cases where automation has been fielded, DoD must ensure logistics costs are adequately addressed in assumptions to either include in site visit assessments or if they are unknown, note that they are not included. In cases where primary purpose of Simulation is to determine effects on sustainment estimates, DoD must ensure systems are properly defined & all historical site visit information e.g., Condition/ Performance metrics are utilised to define operational baselines & related logistics costs.
7. How will automated upgrade/repair platforms monitoring equipment condition impact performance of systems providing increased predict/diagnose capability?
In cases where the primary purpose of equipment upgrade/repair simulation is to determine the effect of automated condition monitoring system, DoD must ensure system/mission performance metrics & logistics costs are adequately defined. To the extent possible, utilise available historical information at work site e.g., Operational Availability, Downtime, Materiel Availability, etc. Select factors to be defined, measured & evaluated in Simulation frameworks to ensure conclusions /recommendations are based on smart comparisons derived from automated processes. DoD must Identify metrics related to prediction of unsuccessful missions, sustainment estimates & logistics processes suitable for automation, such as spare part source information to be assessed in terms of timeliness, accuracy & relevance of prognostic/diagnostic assessment tools. Also, consider any risks associated with sourcing, transfer, and information systems processing , as well as with site visit assessment tools themselves.
8. What effect does upgrade/repair capability have on changing purchase/provision of parts by equipment supply connection initiatives influencing mission power, system readiness & availability?
Simulations must clearly define mission-critical power, operational availability & materiel availability for system included in capability profile propose, also addressing any unknowns or areas not able to be addressed in quantitative terms. Assumptions should include defined sets of mission reliability factors & explain how each unknown area will be treated in site visit assessments. Simulation conclusions/ recommendations must address quantitative/qualitative logistics costs/benefits as well as risks associated with expected unknown areas which have not been quantified, such as changes in purchasing/provision of spare parts at installations. Affected supply system processes must be identified & specific metrics to be used for assessments. Utilising existing logistics & site visit historical information to define sustainment baselines is required as well. Identify affected purchasing process parameters affected & specific metrics able be used for assessments. Utilise existing upgrade/repair information e.g., success in mission theatre to define baseline logistics costs.
9. How will procurement strategies be affected by automated information collection/transmission platforms for determination of logistics parameters & associated cost/risk of each course of action enacted by decision makers?
DoD must ensure ability to execute automated processes & implement alternatives addressed in risk/sensitivity assessments, Identifying & defining implementation-related factors in Simulation assumptions such as supply line connection collection/transmission, Identification & define functions, tasks & related activities during site visits for upgrade/repair, acquisition, focused logistics processes, Joint Capabilities Integration & functional mission requirements definitions affected by or provided by information about upgrade/repair capability proposed during site visits.
10. How will mission readiness, availability, equipment ready for tasking & unscheduled operational downtime impact prediction accuracy of upgrade/repair initiatives designed to improve overall situational awareness of equipment condition at tactical/strategic levels?
DoD must Identify specific metrics critical for product support meeting schedule expectations of installations. Ensure definitions are provided within assumptions & appropriate measures identified following site visit investigation. Recent site visits have documented increasing number of metrics being evaluated. Growth in number of total metrics must be minimised to ensure reasonable amount of effort is required to obtain & assess information to arrive at reasonable conclusions/recommendations. Impacts must be assessed using primary upgrade/repair metrics to include Operational availability, materiel readiness, total cost of in-house provisions & mission downtime. Identify & define any potential automated decision processes, planned integration & installation expectations in key Simulation assumptions. Address incremental capability improvements to impact upgrade/repair operations as new increments become available or are integrated into overall logistics processes. Ensure relevant functional areas such as condition detection, targeted support of specific system/subsystem component, performance prediction, reporting, assessment, decision‐support execution & recovery, both on & off‐board at operational/ tactical command /strategic levels to be assessed & addressed in Simulation conclusions/recommendations.
Hires for New Positions in the organisation require well-defined Skills & Traits, so we will describe ways these skills could be put to use in the context of achieving positive results in meeting mission requirements. Unique & effective work styles include the ability to assimilate & integrate complex concepts towards simplifying presentation & winning people over to new point of view.
Good judgment about people & their ability to contribute to solving problems is an extremely useful skill. Additionally, continuous learning curves are brought to bear by staying up-to-date on current events in specific subject areas. New developments of interest should be disseminated to the right working groups so they will be fully prepped when the time comes for teams to reach consensus.
Personal measures of professional growth include the acquisition of new skills, knowledge & insights into how decisions are made at all levels of the organisation. These growth metrics are major factors in determining success & the ability to stretch out jobs by reaching out to learn more about subject matter areas that may not be immediately apparent.
Focusing on direct application of new concepts to the problem at hand is required & it is essential to have the ability to distinguish potentials of multiple ideas that appear to have merit. It is a skill to be able to say “no” to certain people in critical situations, creating the ability to better set priorities.
Success in new positions is often times the result of deciding what is really important about the tasks at hand. It is critical to look at each day as a new opportunity to perform at high levels & to make best efforts. Success is a direct result of setting big goals, being honest & choosing to work with the right people who are also important stakeholders in the result of projects & thrive in competitive situations.
New Positions in the organisation require appreciation for how essential the components of good reporting to superiors are for success of future operations. These qualities are critical in realising essential goals & go a long way towards establishing a positive image of the mission to be completed. Impacts of good reporting include the ability to plan actionable adjustments to future operations.
Outstanding results should be clearly communicated in order to establish long-term connections between Superiors & units in the field towards repeatable actions, the Bread & Butter of missions carried out in theatre. When good relations with superiors are long-lasting, there is increased potential for mission success.
The experience Superiors have with good reporting of mission results will affect how other stakeholders view work performed by the unit. Superiors do talk & share information about both performance & setting realistic goals. So interactions outside the purview of the unit may affect not only results of current missions, but also the type of mission the unit will likely be tasked with in the future.
It is not good practise to assume the expectations of Superiors are being satisfied, so it is always best to follow up even after tasks look like they have been completed. Then, use the Feedback to provide valuable insight into the quality & characteristics of future missions.
Operational Success is the main contributor to gain satisfaction of Superiors. Just as important as, or maybe even more important than, competing concerns in meeting future missions. If Superiors are not being recipient to field reports meeting or exceeding expectations, it is extremely unlikely that the unit will be tasked for similar missions in the future.
Superiors usually appreciate checking in, especially when some components of the task need improvement & it is possible to use the opportunity to correct deficiencies on a timely basis. In addition, information about mission design & assignments given to units participating in exercises can be used to determine future operations in the field.
In many instances, solid & thorough reporting of results in theatre to superiors may be the one thing that distinguishes unit action from competitors. Adverse reviews of performance may compromise the future position of the unit in future missions.
When reporting to superiors, it is essential not only to describe current events, but also future goals that can be set & achieved such as improved scheduling skills, new performance targets or even skills above & beyond what Superiors have expected in the past. Examples of creative & innovative prototype actions are appropriate if it reinforces patterns of mission planning & future success.
If units are tasked with new missions, it will be crucial to clearly communicate to Superiors the success realised in the field as a direct result of meeting the goal. This indicates that realistic goals have been set so future focus can be applied to fine-tuning continued pursuit goal outcomes. Select examples showcasing both skills & abilities of the unit to meet future mission requirements b/c initiative & resourcefulness have been well-demonstrated.
Tell Me About Yourself:
1) What are your major strengths & characteristics contributing to your effectiveness within Military Service organisations? Describe how your assets have been used to establish operational success.
2) How do you explain your professional success to date & detail why you consider Military Service to be so critical? Describe major goals you've set for yourself recently.
3) Tell me what you know about Military Service & what motivates you to ensure this type of work will lead to successful career path. What goals do you envision achieving within this organisation?
4) Since this will be your first shot at leading Military Divisions, how do you know this career path will meet & sustain your interest as long as required by the mission? Describe the ideal scenario that would satisfy your operational goals & what will be required from the Services to achieve professional growth.
5) How do you plan on constructing your work week given the constraints of Military Service & make realistic deadlines where persuasion of Superiors is critical to success of creative & innovative projects you will promote?
6) How do you organise & plan for implementing new techniques within the Military Services to achieve success of major projects? Describe processes where you used your assets to create practical solutions to difficult problems in critical situations.
7) Describe situations when the Military Services had not established rules or precedent to help you attack a problem. What achievements resulted from your action & how do you stay current on changing conditions in the field where rigorous operational discipline is required?
8) How do you plan on navigating Military Services Command structure & set realistic deadlines for schedules you have to meet based on the quality of your organisational skills? Give examples of situations when you were asked to accomplish tasks but weren't given enough information to immediately resolve problems.
9) Describe situations where adherence to Military Service administrative realities impacted project schedules & became critical factors in successful missions. What specific examples of can you give where skills you learned were applied at work sites?
10) Now that you've had a chance to learn more about Military Service organisations, what would you change about our operations? How will you use techniques for descriptive justification to convince Superiors of project merit?
Top 50 Highlights of Navy Congressional Testimony:
1. Every Major Weapon System impact by sequester- reduce quantity procured, delay schedule delivery & ops capable, defer & absorb cost growth
2. Procurement rates increasing, competition & stability tech improve, affordability improved & base sustained as impact of sequester confronted
3. Budget request supports Replace/Sustain, procure & install multi-intel capable & modify to meet emergent force structure requirements
4. Modern programme include weapons advances, integrate combat control systems, sensors, open architect & upgrade retain capability
5. Contracts focus on meeting stress perform require while reducing costs-- not only design & product, but also operation & sustainment
6. Design, develop & construct efforts required to overcome tech challenges inherent to advanced capable-significant cost perform impact
7. Must establish affordable require invest & mandate Open Systems Design; leverage competition & employ contract tech to control cost
8. Some ships & aircraft will be unavailable to deploy & surge b/c need repairs; need to realign maintain periods within tight ops schedule
9. We will be unable to continue current & anticipated level of ops, compel us to cancel maintenance & training, constrain ability to invest
10. Readiness is already highly fragile. In order to meet current ops require, shrunken fleet stays deployed longer & gets repaired less
11. Preparing to adjust manning in accordance w/ anticipated reductions in Fleet flying hrs. & cancellation of new aircraft inductions
12. Work content growth reflects additions to resolve tech uncertainties, but require creep can be factor & subject to affordable constraints
13. Acquisition controls- block upgrades, content removal& postponing fixes until sustain baseline may delay capable & push costs into future
14. Premature Contracts w/o clear basis for stable design affect work content & cost growth- concurrent products impose retrofit costs
15. Acquisition programmes need to rely on best practices to select contract type & incentive structure given maturity, system type & strategy
16. Acquisitions almost always involve research and develop- uncertainties imply cost, schedule & performance risks relative to early estimates
17. Time require to acquire new capable longer than strategic tech pattern-Plan Performance intertwined w/external cost & schedule demand response
18. Contract execute elements w/unique temporal baseline & cost target can be early indicators but may not affect measure-must evaluate data type
19. Perform exam at contract level provides detailed & useful indicators that eventually will be seen at aggregate procure programme levels
20. Contract-level information describe measures constitute total programme cost growth from original target cost for early lot of units procured
21. Greatest acquisition challenge to identify relationships between affected factors: Contract terms & incentive, workforce skills & outcomes
22. Acquisition system outputs & outcomes measured by functions, responsible, accountable entities & institutions assess cost, schedule & tech
23. Centralised policies & streamlined acquisition execution provide flexibility & innovation w/strict emphasis on discipline & accountability
24. Acquisition system interacts w/systems controlling fiscal require for items procured driven by broader policy & strategy to meet missions
25. Phases subsequent to early production reflected by early estimates--phases to be covered as information access, quality & availability improvement
26. Rigor introduced into process facilitates standardized & accurate assessment of require fleet maintain & requisite ops account invest
27. Challenge in balancing maintenance required for both new & legacy systems in inventory & logistics tail associated w/ parts availability
28. We look at operating forward, look to be ready through series of tasking metrics for mission system-capable aircraft to go forward
29. Challenge is capacity-units can only be in one place-As force is cut we look at ways to mitigate, must forward station for efficiency
30. Maintenance backlog continues to grow & ability to drive backlog down something we would have to carry over into future year accounts
31. Expect will continue to see rise in maintenance item growth to be worked for a few years until all ships complete inspection protocols
32. Programmed funding to support require for maintain, logistics, sparing & surface force modern to ensure full expected service life
33. Concept details perform results of platform design to simulate Weapon Systems & test viability of hardware use to reach performance levels
34. Risk of unilateral disarmament thru runaway costs. Unless system fixed it will soon be impossible to maintain force of sufficient size
35. Acquisition process seriously broken--increasing number of programmes plagued by cost overruns, schedule slips & failures to perform
36. For contracting ops, it seems there is enough standardisation [so] you shouldn’t have to go back to drawing board every time
37. Preparing to adjust deploy in accordance w/ anticipated reductions in Fleet flying hours & cancellation of new aircraft inductions
38. Significant cuts to Ops & Maintenance, Navy accounts to preserve overseas & forward-deployed readiness to maximum extent possible
39. Notifications made to allow prep time for necessary adjustments under year-long continuing resolution & potential sequestration
40. Distributed open system design used w/ distributed processing& modularity--Introduction to fleet comes from single source library
41. Capability interface systems target limited cost growth & develop rapid costs insertion & advanced build processing
42. Defined interfaces enable variety of material solutions incorporated [plug’n protect] in Aircraft survive suites w/o modification
43. Open Architecture develop represents confluence of biz & tech practises yielding modular, interops systems & open interface standards
44. Must Improve capabilities determination process address joint acquisition system ensure ability to maintain tasked weapon systems& capacity
45. Must correct shortcomings recommend actions to revise statutory framework link acquisition w/ sustain require& bolster core determination
46. Core requirements not identified early in acquisition process to allow establishment of core capabilities within mandated timeframe
47. Sequester limits capital structure, innovation &causes spike in inefficiencies b/c we stretch out programmes & drive up costs
48. Pressing need exists to discuss sustainment; it is expensive, accounting for as much as two thirds of weapon system lifespan costs
49. If focus is on sustain w/o relation to force structure, readiness & capability cannot be delivered over time resulting in deferred maintain
50. Must transfer funds to highest priorities. Readiness loses when budget parts untouchable. Must resist kicking it down the road
Mobile operational awareness of equipment supply routes is a function of capability used to track equipment transitioning from active use to upgrade/repair reset operations. Equipment Tracking provides visibility between multiple staging points responsible for equipment transfer.
Goals of equipment tag/track include provision of intermediate solutions for real-time, mobile tracing of equipment throughout reset process. Reset equipment vision is critical to operational-level distribution administration by dispatchers designed to ease burden of linking strategic resources with tactical requirements. Tracking equipment is integral to reset success plans to address execution actions by field units & performance models.
Application of critical Dispatcher actions must be applied for designated reset equipment transitioning from field units destined for follow-on mobile operations or designated depot & field-level upgrade/repair locations. Solutions for long-term tagging of equipment must be identified & implemented by dispatchers in accordance with established priorities of the Force to include reset priorities such as new procurement & depot/field sustainment activities.
Reset service/support contract models have been created for dispatch use to assess forward-looking reset performance estimates for supplemental mobile mission requests. Models provide reset administrators with tools to assess future service/support contracts utilised for mission requests & equipment cache levels focused on logistics information for smart planning. Models must be designed with user-specific requirements to estimate performance of mobile equipment reset.
Models use equipment reset strategies & procurement of service/support contracts estimated to determine total reset requirements. Dispatchers use well-defined assumptions so model is capable of establishing potential reset utility by summation of individual unit mission expenditure so total reset value can be determined, under common operating pictures with reset button function provided with sustainment factors.
Assumptions include majority of equipment will retrograde from mission theatre, subject to actions associated with reset. Equipment status/requirements must be updated & time-stamped. Dispatchers also assume current level of baseline service/support contracts for depot-level upgrade/repair does not change & service/support contract value is based on current depot source/location, usually significantly lower than procurement expenditure. Like Item Procurement, Similar Item Procurement, New Item Procurement & Local Item Procurement fields are closely matched to Procure fields established in utilised models—sustainment fields line up nicely as well.
Equipment Upgrade/Repair Simulation Tools are used to estimate when reset actions will be complete, what reset expenditure will be over time & how reset actions will affect readiness. The simulation reflects all known key installations staging locations charged with routing equipment for retrograde & maintains supplier connection capabilities/characteristics determined during contract contact episodes established by dispatchers to support planning/execution of retrograde & reset operations.
Graphically depicted flow process maps & automated simulations assist in timely identification of routing choke points, service/support opportunities for mobile operations & smart choice of upgrade/repair locations so dispatch processes are lined up with goals for realisation of mission value streams. Equipment condition evaluations can determine if field-level repair is possible, or it may turn out equipment is too badly damaged to be useful in future operations.
1. Modernisation: Replacing legacy equipment with new, updated & different capabilities not in existence before.
2. Reconstitution: Actions beyond reset, taken during or after operational use, to repair and/or upgrade mobile capability to full-spectrum operational readiness. Force reconstitution spans activities from typical sustainment to reorganisation & regeneration of units to redeployment status.
3. Redeployment: Transfer of forces & materiel to support requirements of new installations, or to return equipment to mobilisation assessment stations for reintegration and/or out-processing.
4. Redistribution: The utilisation of logistics resources after Transfer of Authority for realisation of mobile mission requirements. The logistics resources are designated during downtime to become available when mobile missions are set in motion.
5. Reset: Actions taken to restore units to desired level of mobile capability required for future missions to include supply activity designed for restoration to enhance capabilities of pre-positioned equipment stressed beyond capacity for upgrade/repair.
6. Specified Standards: Upgrade/repair & supply activities to include field-level sustainment with centralised dispatch techniques up to specified standards to include procurement, testing, evaluations & recapitalisation.
7. Technology Insertion: Existing equipment enhanced by insertion of new technology or restoration to original conditions utilising logistics strategy to involve reconditioning & replacement for field-level losses.
8. Use in Theatre: Equipment redeployed from theater, remaining in theater, or anticipated for use in theater to include recapitalisation/restoration of units to desired level for future missions based on condition evaluation status.
9. Revitalise: Actions taken beyond reconstitution for full equipment recovery & increased capability to include future modernisation & re-stationing to meet entire spectrum of future mobile operations.
10. Urgent Action: Equipment determined critical for mission requirements must be in statement evaluation not already included in deployment allowance status or available at existing installations when expedited fielding is required based on urgent mobile requirements.
Sounds simple? Well, of course not: Changing the contract procurement quote frequency period over the interface between installations for Fleet Type & Size deployment via Template test script dispatch probably will not be simple at all! Huge textbooks and lengthy reports have been dedicated to examination of organisational resource sourcing strategy, improving performance & scheduling times and administrative changes in the operational force structure due to increased demands put on the fleet for addressing surge contingency scenarios. The Template Test script model developed by dispatchers is a good framework to prime DoD to ask the right questions – but it won’t provide all the answers. For that you'll need to bring together the right knowledge, skills and experience.
Here are some of the questions dispatchers are required to explore to provide DOD with an understanding of the contract quote frequencies for unanticipated surge contingency scenarios involving the fleet. Use them to create a solid Template Test Script Case for the current situation first, and then repeat the exercise for the proposed future situation: 1) What is the dispatchers strategy? 2) How dispatchers intend to achieve objectives? 3)How do dispatchers deal with competitive pressure? 4) How do dispatchers address changes to contingency scenarios? 5) How is strategy adjusted for dispatcher reward issues when project is completed?
Several important questions beyond those already introduced address the Structure, Shared Operational Mission Sets & dispatchers Composition and skill sets: These topics have been addressed in Previous Memos, Briefs & Posts and will not be elaborated on here because of a space limitation imposed on this report. All of the questions raised below are critical to establishing a solid working relationship between dispatchers and DoD towards the shared goal of Maintaining Positive, Performance-related Route Condition Indices Metrics & Measures, promoting results-driven subsequent changes in Fleet Type & Size Deployment Spatial Patterns. Changes in these critical markers precipitate DoD resource sourcing Registration with dispatchers
Top 10 Questions for Contract Procurement Quote Schedule Structure:
1) How is dispatchers work and time divided?
2) How do the various DoD units coordinate hierarchical activities?
3) How do dispatchers organise and align themselves?
4) Is decision-making centralised or decentralised? Is this as it should be, the mission tasks
5) Where are the lines of communication between dispatchers & DoD? Explicit & implicit?
6) What are the main fiscal resourcing system strategies?
7) What scenarios drive Template Test Script Design & Generation Process?
8) Where are the controls on the contract procurement quote system?
9) How are operational constraints monitored & evaluated?
10) What processes do dispatchers use to keep on track in the absence of contributions from DoD?
Top 10 questions for Shared Mission Assignments & dispatchers Skill Assessments:
1) What are the core values inherent in dispatchers acting in the national interest?
2) How does participation & effectiveness is dispatchers work style?
3) Do dispatchers tend to be competitive or cooperative?
4) Are real dispatchers teams functioning within Equipment deployment or just nominal groups?
5) Do dispatchers assess Equipment Condition prior to Equipment Deployment
6) What positions or specialisations are represented within dispatchers teams?
7) Are there gaps in dispatcher skills sets to precipitate increase ranks by filling empty positions?
8) What are the strongest skills represented within dispatchers Team?
9) Do current dispatchers teams have the resources to do the job?
10) How are mission requirements monitored & assessed?
The end game should be dispatchers capabilities for assessing fleet route condition indices, provide equipment service/support & translate into fleet deployment action, where the piece parts collaborate to solve problems & insights can be leveraged for maximum impact. To be sure, this may require more effort at first, more sponsorship from the senior ranks, and buy-in from political stakeholders. Yet DoD enterprise-scale results, whether in increased future operational tempos during surge contingency scenarios, return on capital, or enhancing the role that DoD can play in shaping global affairs and national security, or any other metric for that matter, are what make the effort and complete physical exhaustion worthwhile.
1. Dispatchers conclude serious supplier risk assessments require deliberation to calculate & administer costs of providing security considerations for force structure requirements of installations. Deployments will be built with structural definitions condition indices dispatchers now employ to ensure execution of supply line connection actions designed to offset inherent deployment risks. Dispatcher actions generate deployment episodes & more opportunity for future realisation of force structure requirements.
2. Dispatchers conclude adequate administrative control structure must be part of any DoD considerations for equipment supply projects even while deals have been contracted out at the inception of the projects. Supply models evaluating operational value of equipment on hand from deployment standpoint, given demand projections & new resource substitution, are extended as basis for discussing whether dispatchers will be able to successfully link cost & security risks of resource projects to equipment deployment. Administrative requirements for producing & applying equipment resource risk considerations in evaluating mission infrastructure projects are presented.
3. Dispatchers conclude global factors involving fiscal issues related to deployment of limited equipment resources may require creation of contract quote systems to provide good documentation to evaluate installations in question, both from Fiscal standpoint & contribution of DoD to deployment of new equipment sources & standards in operational scenarios. Techniques related to evaluation of supply line connection strength are predicted to be valuable to equipment deployment in complex supply lines. Related issues involve maturity, transparency & competitiveness of equipment supply.
4. Dispatchers conclude several issues related to DoD-associated suppliers concerning the construction of Fiscal infrastructure for deployment of resources should be addressed by DoD for meeting force structure scenarios at installations. Equipment supply lines are evaluated, both from the standpoint of DoD assessments, as well as supplier participants. Considerations for documentation requirements associated with DoD assumption of supply line risks, both political & commercial, are presented, together with assignment of force structure resolution responsibilities of installations.
5. Dispatchers conclude more administrative oversight is warranted in evaluations, prior to establishing supply line connections, of equipment infrastructure projects generating operational value streams. Comparative arguments are made for consideration of equipment & other infrastructure-related investments to be classified as distinct asset classes, with unique categorisations of administrative concerns. Fiscal risks & rewards of individual equipment infrastructure projects are characterised to highlight direct/indirect means by which DoD gains exposure to approved infrastructure projects meeting key force structure requirements. Performance & risks of infrastructure investments in comparison to other equipment classes are evaluated.
6. Dispatchers conclude key roles of supplier provisions to participate in equipment service sectors be clearly distinguished from DoD actions to build/deploy equipment resources, if conditions mandate DoD authority to meet requirements of force structure scenarios. Clear & unequivocal supply line provisions should be made with regard to the administrative structure of DoD when negotiations begin with equipment suppliers, considering the provisions exercised by installations. Arguments have been made detailing value of assigning authority to DoD for oversight of supplier risk, & build/deploy processes, addressing broad factors to account for security & operational costs.
7. Dispatchers conclude installation participation in future equipment resource deployment & associated infrastructure value requirements is indispensable concern for DoD security interests. Historical perspectives offer insights describing operational context in which mission requirements are built for equipment resources & attendant consequences for suppliers. Force structure requirements & supply line scenarios are detailed where certain levels of DoD participation contribute toward goal of employing risk assessments to highlight opportunities for adding value, providing security & executing operational risk in which concerns related to Supply Line infrastructure, build requirements & deployment risks are addressed.
8. Dispatchers conclude short presentation of techniques linking equipment deployment & force structure scenarios is useful consideration, given operational& fiscal issues DoD now faces. Historically, serious resource & fiscal positions have highlighted the need for additional sources of value. If successful, DoD administrators could function as an important conduit to provide for the future force structure postures at installations. DoD mechanisms designed to raise fiscal potentials for equipment resource infrastructure investment & deployment concerns are considered, since funds needed to invest in such large global tasks are considerable & cannot be expected to be met completely through current allocations.
9. Dispatchers conclude Suppliers plan announcements to provide new products meeting high-end equipment resource Infrastructure Inputs for strategic force structure scenarios are important factor in evaluating Fiscal factors related to cost. However, DoD does not always reap benefits of cost reductions, with suppliers present who did not pass cost reduction to DoD, creating investigations to corroborate claims supplier participants were being disingenuous in order to earn increased profits. For obvious reasons, allegations are often times swept under the Rug. Based on limited information provided by suppliers, some assessments conclude DoD regularly gets Raw Deals when seeking out equipment to meet mission requirements.
10. Dispatchers conclude assessment tools must detail techniques designed to better evaluate costs of equipment resources from suppliers. DoD can calculate equipment costs if similar portfolios of other assets having the same future cash-flows are considered. If DoD constructs such a portfolio it can use supply line connection survey principles to determine costs of changes in asset value. We show how this idea works in some simple cases. Obviously, more complex math underlies true risk assessments of mobile operations, but dispatchers & other DoD recruits should, at minimum, understand the math introduced in basic application of Cost Estimation Tools. The concepts involved in understanding the construction of replicating equipment portfolios have been reduced to less rigorous reading levels for these purposes.
Competing mission requirements between airwings, means aircraft availability must be secured by providing aircraft fleet with efficient component support.
Availability services in general & aircraft component support in particular, have been examined under such topics as split up demand, cost structure of availability services & benefits of spare part cache pooling implementation.
One of most important factors in airwing operation is availability of aircraft for scheduled missions, i.e. technical dispatch reliability. Dispatch reliability is kept at adequate levels by upgrade/repair functions.
Success is achieved by replacing failed units, i.e. aircraft components, quickly by functional units & repairing the failed units afterwards. Technique allows aircraft to continue operation immediately without waiting for repair work to be completed.
Demand for aircraft component availability services is usually split up. Airwings operate with disparate fleets from many installation hubs. DoD has strong interests in keeping spare units required by supporting fleets as close as possible.
In contrast, availability services stand to benefit from demand consolidation since demand is caused by random
component failures. DoD cost pressures require efficiency improvements in availability services & must be performed without compromising dispatch reliability.
Airwing fleet structure has big impact on costs & demand split up of component availability services. Models can measure uniformity of airwing fleets & potential for achieving scale economies.
Considering one installation providing spare components for its operations in-house, the scale of its fleet determines cost levels of availability service. When several airwings operate in same region, scale of total fleet determines potential for achieving economies by cooperative arrangements between installations.
Models show deficits in commonality of fleets along increased fleet scale have been steadily increasing. Decreasing commonality causes extensive complexity in DoD processes, but increasing scale allows new levels of efficiency to be achieved.
Predominant availability service costs include ownership cost of spare units, originating directly from valuation/depreciation principles applied. Challenges in repairable components valuation is that, unlike other
capacity assets & disposable spare parts, components keep changing between capacity function & spare part function.
Components require different valuation/ depreciation rules: 1) Revenue generating function as common capacity assets 2) preservation of mission requirement function as spare components & 3) Situations when changing from one function to the other.
Availability models provide simple & feasible pooling arrangement with increased return of availability service costs if installation participants are willing to endure some delivery delays from a remote pool stock.
Installation pool participants experience higher service levels with lower cost but must wait for spare units longer compared to airwings providing its spare components in-house. Cost savings achieved by entire pool is determined by total fleet scale of cooperation implementation.
Pooling benefits under optimal conditions are generally higher when more demand for one component type is served by one pool. Conflicting interests between participating installations have the potential to result in less efficient pooling arrangements.
Primary causes of conflict involve issue of allocating availability service costs between pool participants, frequently complicated by split up spare component demand.
Deeper dives examining route creation implementing pooling are required to measure potential of each option to capture pooling benefits in availability service of airwing components against much variation in external conditions.
Here we present emphasis on advanced application of Equipment Upgrade/Repair Work Orders during in-service phases of equipment sustainment to begin with concept design & continue until equipment completes each service deployment based on schedule series. Guides for better Mission-effective equipment status from operational & cost standpoint must be improved by establishing upgrade/repair work order programme during early sourcing phases design & subsequent deployment efforts to complete missions.
Using equipment upgrade/repair work orders as part of design process allows early identification of equipment reset modes based on condition/perform-based assessment actions. Equipment must require design improvements benefiting from introduction of design features such as easy access, new technology, easy inspection or interchanged part types, or technological advances. Upgrade/Repair work order activity must be scheduled based on Sourcing Programme Phases.
Guides to better support new Design/Assess of equipment with reduced Logistics Footprint must provide schedules to use in define/assess programme activities to meet mission requirements during equipment system sustainment. Emphasis is placed on reliable design for increased reliable & reduced Logistics Footprint to provide for effective product support.
This Guide stresses the use of equipment upgrade/repair work orders to realise system-based approaches to determine equipment reset consequences & must identify most applicable/effective sustainment tasks. Appropriate use of condition/perform-based assessment technologies must be established by modern diagnostic/prognostic tools to integrate on/off-board monitoring, testing schedule deter mination, & information collection capabilities to enhance overall system support.
These practices must include modern equipment condition/perform-based trend reviews, point-of upgrade/repair work order schedules, risk mitigation, serial parts type item clarification, automatic identification technology & information-driven, interactive training at installations.
Ultimately, these practises must increase operational availability & readiness of equipment at reduced costs covering everything from initial sourcing phase factors & work order schedules to sustainment operations. Here we present guidance for appropriate equipment upgrade/repair work order activities prior/during/after multiple equipment sourcing phase Milestones.
1. Equipment Sourcing process assess routine repair/upgrade work order provide situation info to discover trends & schedule pattern to formulate/revise materiel resource decision
2. Equipment Sourcing risk control compare situation monitor repair/upgrade work order allocation report appraise schedule feedback loop & tech activity extent for clear structure change adjust
3. Equipment Sourcing process determine qualities motivate assign conflict risk assess tech communicate schedule info require for effective & clear, measurable, achievable repair/upgrade work orders
4. Equipment Sourcing project collect baseline equipment info & situation resource charting, action plan, implement schedule & monitor progress for repair/upgrade work order evaluation
5. Equipment Sourcing action plan checklist activate accomplish schedule objective & resource location, coordinate/implement detailed fiscal monitor & evaluate repair/upgrade work order quality assurance
6. Equipment Sourcing situation determine repair/upgrade work order goal expectations & critical schedule phase risks constitute basis for choosing factor evaluate & monitor time-bound activity during implement
7. Equipment Sourcing consider realistic draft of objectives & constraints, assumptions detailed, schedule limitations determine to assess concrete repair/upgrade work order process goals
8. Equipment Sourcing projects determine causal relationships behind repair/upgrade work order objectives consider combined requirements & shed light on how schedule links interact & consequences
9. Equipment Sourcing process determine organisation account for repair/upgrade work order type assist, target group offers for real schedule change & mobilised structures
10. Equipment Sourcing Brainstorming sessions address all identified schedule requirement baseline set with all stakeholders to prioritise info collection process for repair/upgrade work order review, method Q &A
Procurement costs are widely used as the primary-- sometimes only-- criteria for equipment or system selection--i.e. cheap is good. Procurement cost is a simple criterion. It is easy to use, but often results in bad fiscal decisions & operational disasters!
Procurement costs tell only one part of the story. The major determinates for utility of equipment in real-world mobile operations lies in sustainment of equipment & many factors influence success of upgrade/repair sites responsible for sustainment implementation, including supplier capacity.
Remember-- It’s unwise to pay too much, but it’s foolish to spend too little”.
Usually procurement cost is the only value considered when equipment requirements are put in play. Usually, procurement costs are well known & clearly identified—but it’s only the tip of the iceberg. But seeing the tip of an iceberg does not guarantee clear, unimpeded passage of your craft around an iceberg. Hidden, underlying, substructures of an iceberg-- similar to the decisions made for bulk execution of limiting sustainment cost/functions for equipment/systems contain the hazards.
Making sustainment cost/use calculations is easier when relevant supplier/field use information is present. The difficult effort is how to resolve the chicken or egg dilemma for finding information predicting requirements for equipment reset & other details involved in sustainment. You need reliability engineering upgrade/repair simulation details from users in field units to find out when reset is required. Time-sensitive upgrade/repair schedules must be converted into simulation model format required for determining reliability profiles for supplier capacity as well as other variables that factor into sustainment operational success.
Not many DoD Executives can brag about their ability to determine sustainment cost/function facts until someone else puts numbers on the table right in front of them—then the critics are numerous for “correcting” the proposed numbers. Follow the scientific method: build equipment reset models to determine use/cost & then test the models. When in doubt about equipment reset requirements, make an estimate and test the estimate for validity by visiting key Upgrade/Repair Sites.
This report presents 10 Step stage assessment technique for equipment repair/upgrade job sites based on a single tour with some Q&A utilising simple, rapid assessment forms. Since its inception, it has been applied to a number of cases, successfully identifying major strength points of the operations.
Scoring high marks on efficiency & effectiveness of repair/upgrade services is a great challenge for work sites responsible for bringing equipment up to levels required for successful missions. As a result, we need to clearly benchmark the quality of operations. However, assessing performance of repair/upgrade job sites can be a tricky business.
Even after we visited a large number of repair/upgrade job sites, it is still difficult to tell after a visit if the job site was a best-in class operation, just above-average, or even relatively substandard in key performance areas. Nevertheless, even short tour visits can reveal a lot of information to the trained eye.
Major functions of repair/upgrade job sites include lining up equipment supplier capacity in order to make assortments for subsequent deployment in critical missions, to assemble orders & add value to orders by customisation activities, organising dispatch of orders in a timely manner.
Repair/Upgrade job site performance consists of multiple dimensions. Inputs are the resources used to achieve the outputs. Often, performance is measured in terms of ratios of output/ input factors:
1) Deployed equipment orders, lines & units [output]
2) Quality measures such as order completeness, error-free & on-time deployment [output]
3) Flexibility to cope with changes in demand [output]
4) Agility to meet/adapt to changing requirements [output]
5) Innovation-- use of new supply line concepts to yield required mission components [output]
6) Number of full-time work hour equivalents [input]
7) Investment in modern information systems [input]
8) Creation of top-notch physical work sites [input]
9) Process organisation [input]
10) Assortment of equipment items carried [input]
We have tried to create benchmark tools for repair/upgrade job sites like expressing operational efficiency as a ratio of weighted output & weighted input factors, normalised on a 0 to 1 scale. While powerful, application of this type of tool is usually difficult to obtain required accuracy levels.
Also, for every factor that is included in the efficiency mark-up, more cases are needed in order to produce quality results. Finally, it is difficult to include factors not measured on interval scales, or more subjective assessments like supplier capacity, teamwork & motivation.
This tool is based on a single repair/upgrade Job site tour and can be carried out in a few hours, including some Q&A. It is not necessary to have deep insight in the operations as Visiting Executive.
The main objectives of the tool are to discern strengths of repair/upgrade job sites after some basic training on how to use the tool. The tool can also be used to evaluate operations of logistics service suppliers.
This is not to say that the tool can be a substitute for due diligence when assessing fiscal performance, which is not part of the tool. However, all too often, executives ignore vital visual signals that can be easily acquired in favour of what would seem to be objective requirements, like equipment quantities processed, item turns or subsequent mission success.
Upgrade/Repair site models should shoot for automated Equipment upgrade/repair platforms to eliminate static, paper-based schedules for reporting of operational parameters, becoming mandatory practise across Fleet Types.
We rewrite supply playbook & redefine playing field by promoting interval scheduling & situation-based, streamlined upgrade/repair operations by better forecasting critical work orders for equipment.
Monitoring work order periods creates schedules for equipment upgrade/repair activities in verified parts supply systems, accomplishing work in timely manner. Automatic alerts for administration of operations highlight overdue upgrade/repair requirements.
Scheduling rules & situations are driven by technical feedback for critical procedures, detecting any changes in periodic or situational equipment upgrade/repair & adjusts schedules accordingly.
Automatic schedule creation is based on applicable supplier situation checks on equipment condition states. Adjusted schedules are always up-to-date, allowing upgrade/repair technicians & supervisors to create accurate forecasts of work order hours, tools, parts, & test equipment requirements.
Inaccurate parts supply schedules are a thing of the past. Interactive & narrated dispatch lessons assign training events & track progress of upgrade/repair operations through consistent updates on status of supplier capacity for critical equipment.
Up-to-date supplier capacity information systems demonstrate utility of performance-based testing. Platforms monitor which actions users perform & recommend applicable training. Training is assigned to users, tracking progress by dispatching master training view functions for mobile operations.
Content is modular in nature so Visiting Executive can quickly determine what training has been completed by each user. New & updated training circuits may be dispatched immediately upon becoming available. Quick deficiency notifications allow scheduling of corrective actions. Notifications are based off minimal input from user.
Operational upgrade/repair platforms gives users personalised to-do-lists, including items such as signing feedback reports, work orders with requirements to be performed by the user, or approvals of supplier alerts, revisions & spot checks. Work order information is filtered based on the role users play in the planned Upgrade/repair simulation, permissions granted & Executive review. Users only see what they need to.
Equipment upgrade/replace action views are provided by platform so planned work orders can be tied to equipment condition, allowing users to add well-formed corrective actions into work orders. Simplified Task Dispatch tactics make it easy to see what users must accomplish in day-to-day operations.
In the past, users tailored work orders to equipment by physically drawing a line through printed procedures that didn’t apply. Now, platforms enable users to create repeatable, automatic line-out steps to create library of upgrade/repair procedures, accessible at any time for a specific piece of equipment.
Customised notes can be created for tools, parts & materiel based on localised information like equipment lists, installation of record & supplier capacity. The platform we propose stores all information required to reproduce upgrade/repair requirements at a moment’s notice.
During our Executive equipment repair/upgrade site visit, DoD administrators were talking about the money a technician had saved purchasing a particularly expensive piece of equipment:
“I wonder if anyone else knows about this?”
Chances were slim that anyone else at repair/upgrade site knew about that particular deal. At that time, technicians were each responsible for sourcing their own parts & there was no formal or centralised system in place at DoD for sharing information.
We recommended DoD undertake a comprehensive reorganisation of the sites processes & work needed to commence immediately to meet mission requirements. As part of that effort, the entire parts ordering process was revamped & centralised, resulting in huge benefits to the entire repair/upgrade operation.
With technicians spread across multiple installations w/ no centralised parts procurement system at DoD, there was no easy way for technicians to share information about good deals on parts or problems with suppliers.
“One technician may have found a good source in terms of pricing or quality, but that information was rarely shared beyond that one Site.'
“Across our system, we had lots of technicians doing the same type of work, but weren’t getting the same information.
It was clear DoD had deficits in their repair/upgrade operations & were missing an opportunity to share information.
Beyond that, each technician was doing it all—sourcing & buying parts, plus expediting, tracking, & invoicing-- spending lots of time on the procurement process every day.”
Another problem was overstocking of parts.
“Technicians who want to provide as much uptime as possible tend to over-order parts.”
“That leads to a huge cache of excess parts at each repair/upgrade site [see recent DoD IG Report on V-22 aircraft excess parts]."
We recommended DoD reorganise its entire upgrade/repair site processes & parts procurement process was a key target for improvement. We undertook a study of the process, which revealed that “big chunks” of technician time per day was being spent on parts procurement.
We found consistent overstocking of parts & fragmented communication among technicians regarding the best sources for parts on both cost & quality.
It was clear that a new process was needed if sustainment operations were to live up to capacity & potential so equipment is returned to users in field as soon as possible for use in mobile operations.
“We were mandated to take advantage of those opportunities to cut costs, free up wrench time for our technicians & have specialists focusing on parts procurement.”
Here is the solution: Centralise the parts procurement function.
“Step one in the centralisation process was to recruit & hire a quality Executive who knew DoD sourcing/sustainment business as a direct result of extensive reviews of the organisation & was excited about Visiting Equipment Upgrade/Repair Sites so Evaluations could Start.”
“Step two was to collect, catalogue, and centralise our spare parts”
Initially, front-line technicians resisted this centralisation, particularly those in long-standing upgrade/repair regimes.
“We had to go back multiple times to get the stuff that techs did not have tracking processes in place.”
DoD must identify the upgrade/repair simulation work order space and set up information systems with high fidelity, creating a central cache of parts that is now accessible across the system.
DoD had to look at the equipment parts system as a whole to determine what was still useful, what to throw out & what to move to other installations.
We recommended setting up centralised systems where techs would no longer allowed to order on their own. Most requests go directly to purchasing & are immediately approved; only questionable items are flagged for administrative review.
“We didn’t want to create a supplier capacity bottleneck. It’s critical to get parts ordered & turned around, so we’ve made the Upgrade/Repair process as streamlined as possible.”
Supplier Capacity Parts modules were created to provide an interface between disparate information systems.
The new process has the technicians enter the required part directly on their work order, ensuring that all parts & associated sustainment costs are captured.
The parts request, identifying the urgency, then goes directly to the parts team who communicates back to the technician with notification at several steps of the purchasing process.
This flow of information cuts technician follow-up time and keeps everyone in the loop on parts status. At any point in the process, parts details are available on the central work order screen to anyone needing an update on equipment status.
The new information systems allow technicians to plan their time more efficiently, resulting in huge productivity gains with clear benefit to executing sustainment missions.
Automated systems let the team track & trend supplier capacity details on equipment parts, which can then be applied to making better sustainment decisions.
“We’re able to monitor sustainment costs & identify which technicians are ordering parts & not installing them right away. These lead to opportunities for retraining our technicians.”
Entry into new information systems allows for identification of problems with suppliers in terms of speed, specialisation & quality of parts. For example, suppliers whose parts are routinely not in good order are removed from the supplier list.
“Our preferred supplier lists are very fluid. We may have particular supplier at the top of a list, but if we encounter problems, they may not stay there."
The parts procurement specialists monitor the work order screen for new part requests, process a part to be moved from the working cache, or create a purchase report.
For specialists, level of parts sourcing expertise has grown with experience. They are able to predict the need for parts in high demand based on upcoming periodic upgrade/repair work site checks & service history, keep stocks of key items for immediate use.
Specialists are also learning to consolidate purchases & reduce the total number of purchase orders processed, leading to even greater mission success critical for sustainment missions.
“We have proven that a centralised system works."
Since implementing the programme, DoD has seen consistent advances in parts operations & significantly increased technician satisfaction & productivity. Plus, results show better parts tracking contributes directly to increasing subsequent equipment uptime so critical mobile field operations can be executed in theatre.
Much of the wrench time saved is due to the more efficient parts ordering process. While technicians initially had a hard time letting go of their procurement tracking responsibilities, they now trust the system.
“I need a part, I find it the next day. I just request a part, and it shows up. We have seen equipment downtime greatly reduced due to centralised sourcing policy.”
Increased collection of key supplier information made possible by the centralisation was of clear benefit to scheduled sustainment operations.
We recommended DoD address the need to share information among the technicians, including information on lowest cost suppliers, best quality & best delivery time.
“By collecting and evaluating supplier information, we can make better decisions & that effort will help us continue to get better at the critical equipment upgrade/repair work orders we have been tasked with.”
In all, our revamp of the parts ordering process is part of the overall aim to allow technicians to focus on their core competencies essential to sustainment missions.
“Is their core competency fixing equipment, ordering parts, generating reports, or answering phones? We want to optimise our investment in the technicians. By centralising the parts function, we’ve been able to do exactly that.”
We will present written 10 Stage Reports utilising this Sustainment Evaluation Tool Box in subsequent memos. We first discuss the areas in more detail & then present results as well as further validation of the technique:
1. Satisfaction of Equipment Mission Agents
2. Use of Work Order Job Space
3. Condition of Technical Installations
4. State of Materiel Contact
5. Teamwork & Motivation
6. Storage & Order Picking Tech
7. Equipment Inventory Strategies
8. Supply Line Coordination
9. Level & Use of Information Systems
10. Commitment to Quality Services