• New Name, New Efficiencies

    Soldiers with 703rd Brigade Support Battalion (BSB), 4th Infantry BCT, 3rd Infantry Division (4-1 ID), sling-load a container to a CH-47 Chinook helicopter, Oct. 15, 2013, on Forward Operating Base Shank, Afghanistan. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Sarah Bailey, 703rd BSB Public Affairs)

    Directorates of logistics become logistics readiness centers for more effective access to services and supply


    By Col. Dan J. Reilly


    When the U.S. Army Materiel Command (AMC) rebranded the installation directorates of logistics (DOLs) as logistics readiness centers (LRCs) on Oct. 1, 2013, the rebranding not only culminated the formal transfer of 73 DOLs worldwide from the U.S. Army Installation Management Command to AMC, but also established a vision to integrate and optimize AMC capabilities on installations.

    This transformation enables AMC to focus on materiel and services support, allowing installation commanders to focus on managing their installations. It also optimizes the LRCs’ capability and capacity, improves contract management, and enhances quality and visibility of services. The LRCs provide the command additional field maintenance expertise, transportation services and base logistics support. This aids the U.S. Army Sustainment Command (ASC) in its mission to support the Army Force Generation process.

    The LRCs are designed to provide an AMC presence on every installation. Today, the LRCs manage installation supply, maintenance and transportation. This includes food service, ammunition supply, clothing issue facility and initial issue point, hazardous material, bulk fuel, personal property and household goods, passenger travel, nontactical vehicles, rail and garrison equipment maintenance.

    Members of the U.S. Army Reserve and Air National Guard (ANG) practice extinguishing a fire during Exercise Patriot 13 at Volk Field, Wis., July 17, 2013. The Patriot exercise is a domestic operations scenario to assess the ANG’s ability to assist state and local agencies in response to multiple emergencies. The transition to LRCs postures AMC to support the vision of Defense Support to Civil Authorities, among other doctrine. (U.S. Army photo by Cpt. Dan Marchik, 103rd Sustainment Command (Expeditionary))

    As a result of the transfer of installation DOLs to AMC a year earlier on Oct. 1, 2012, the DOLs became separate activities on their installations. This uniquely identified each DOL as an Army operational unit. The change in the DOLs’ status on the installations required an official name change on authorization documents. It also marked a change in their mission as AMC’s “face to the field,” which necessitated realignment with DA and the renaming from DOL to LRC.

    ASC, as AMC’s operational arm, assumed responsibility for the LRCs during the 2012 transfer. ASC’s mission is to sustain Army and joint forces throughout the world in support of combatant commanders, so this additional mission fit perfectly with its capabilities.

    Upon transfer, AMC did not implement the name change because the focus was on a seamless transition. One year later, AMC believed the timing was right to formally rebrand the DOLs as LRCs.

    Sfc. Joseph Russell, an infantryman with 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, signs a hand-receipt to get an AT-4 anti-tank weapon from unit supply specialist Sgt. Derrick Taylor April 15, 2013, in the unit supply room at Fort Bliss, Texas. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Larry Barnhill, 24th Press Camp Headquarters)

    This transition results in a single entry point to access AMC capabilities. It best postures AMC to support the vision outlined in Globally Responsive Sustainment 2020, Army 2020 and Defense Support to Civil Authorities, setting conditions to optimize AMC capabilities from power projection platforms to forward operating bases.

    Globally Responsive Sustainment 2020 is an approach that seeks to produce a sustainment system that is optimized, integrated, synchronized, affordable and relevant to support unified land operations and the joint warfighter while minimizing redundancy.

    Army 2020 is an initiative to transition the Army to address future security challenges. The sustainment initiative develops and implements the Army 2020 Sustainment Strategy through its ongoing efforts in the area of tactical sustainment force structure.

    The LRCs are AMC’s single face-to-the-field on installations, through which customers can access, integrate and synchronize AMC capabilities to support senior commanders, installation tenants and units’ priorities. Each LRC acts as the single hub on an installation for customers to access the Army sustainment base, giving Soldiers, commanders and joint partners on Army installations the full power of a globally networked logistics command with responsibility for Soldier services, supply and maintenance support.

    Soldiers deliver Meals, Ready to Eat, water, fuel and other supplies to the 3rd BCT, 82nd Airborne Division during an exercise at the Joint Readiness Training Center on Fort Polk, LA, Aug. 23, 2013. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Amanda Tucker, 82nd Sustainment Brigade Public Affairs)

    Installation-based LRCs, forward-deployed Army field support brigades, ASC and AMC together control the supply chain “from factory to foxhole,” including forward operating bases. LRCs enable AMC to bring its full capabilities to the decisive point on an installation in support of Army power projection platforms, training requirements and no-notice contingency missions, as the Army transitions to a globally deployable force based in the continental United States.

    In the future, the transition to LRCs will result in efficiencies and increased effectiveness. Before the transition, each installation managed its own contracts. Currently, the Army has more than 250 contracts for the acquisition of LRC installation logistics services. That has resulted in redundant capabilities and excess capacity. In response, ASC developed a contracting strategy called the Enhanced Army Global Logistics Enterprise program (EAGLE), to address inconsistencies in requirements and levels of service.

    Spc. Gavin Wright, a petroleum supply specialist with 1st Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team (BCT), 1st Infantry Division, unrolls a fuel hose during aviation fuel-operations training Sept. 11, 2013, at Marshall Army Airfield, Fort Riley, Kan.. LRCs manage bulk fuel supply in addition to many other instal­lation supplies and services. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Keven Parry, Combat Aviation Brigade, 1st Infantry Division)

    The EAGLE program focuses on material maintenance services, retail and wholesale supply services, and transportation support services. It also executes logistics services and requirements using an innovative strategy designed for flexibility. The EAGLE program fundamentally changes the way that the Army acquires installation logistics services, by increasing competition and small business participation, reducing the number of contracts to award and oversee, and reducing the acquisition timeline by using task order competitions under multiple basic ordering agreements.

    In addition, EAGLE task orders can expand or contract based on funding and requirements—that is, the Army pays only for the services it needs and receives. Currently, 128 contractors, 78 of which are small businesses, are qualified to compete for EAGLE task orders.

    EAGLE can be scaled and adapted as needed, which makes it ideal for the current fiscal environment as well as the overall defense resource strategy. EAGLE contracting strategies align with those of DA and DOD.

    Five EAGLE task orders were awarded in the fourth quarter of FY13. Through contracting strategies such as EAGLE, AMC is expecting at least a 15 to 30 percent savings on contracts. Those five EAGLE task order awards in Q4 of FY13 reflect an 18 percent reduction from previous contracts.

    As the LRC concept matures, it will continue to set the conditions to integrate all AMC capabilities under one roof. Through consolidation of AMC mission command, ASC will increase flexibility, eliminate redundancy, standardize processes, ensure reachback through our life-cycle management commands and other AMC major subordinate commands, and meet the challenges of a constrained fiscal environment, all while continuing to sustain the Army and joint forces worldwide in support of combatant commanders.

    For more information, contact ASC’s executive director for field support at 309-782-4815 or usarmy.ria.asc.list.fs@mail.mil.

    Col. DAN J. REILLY is director of the Installation Logistics Directorate at ASC, Rock Island Arsenal, Ill.. He holds a B.A. in communications from Eastern Illinois University, an M.S. in administration from Central Michigan University and an M.S. in national strategic studies from the U.S. Air Force Air University.

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  • AMC: A Globally Networked Logistics Command

    John Macer (left) and John Henry prepare a gunner’s station mount for modifications Feb. 15 at Fort Bragg, NC. Macer and Henry belong to a special team fielded by Joint Program Office Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicles, which works in concert with Army Field Support Battalion – Bragg to ensure that pre-deployment training equipment provides Soldiers realistic preparation for deployed operations. (U.S. Army photo by C.W. Fick Jr.)

    In August, U.S. Army Materiel Command (AMC) celebrated its 50th year of providing America’s warfighters with the decisive edge. AMC’s mission is to develop, deliver, and sustain materiel to ensure a dominant Joint Force for the United States and our allies. While our mission has remained the same over the past half-decade, we are a fundamentally different organization than we were at our inception, and much of that change has occurred over the past 10 years.

    AMC has evolved into a Globally Networked Logistics Command, with forces deployed around the world. Our position as the Army’s Lead Materiel Integrator (LMI) makes us a key enabler for global materiel management. The well-trained and dedicated AMC workforce, some 70,000 strong, researches, develops, procures, delivers, and sustains the equipment on which the warfighter depends to perform his or her mission.

    AMC also recognizes the significant challenges ahead in returning equipment from Afghanistan. One thing is clear: The challenges of reset and retrograde from Afghanistan are not the same as those from Iraq.

    In 2011, AMC serviced a workload three times greater than in the Vietnam era, resetting some 2.7 million critical pieces of equipment ranging from chemical/biological equipment to missile systems for 33 brigade combat team equivalents per year. We anticipate that workload will continue, and AMC continues to implement lessons from Operations Desert Storm, Enduring Freedom, and New Dawn to refine and improve our efforts.

    As always, our priority remains supporting the Joint warfighter, and our accomplishments in 2011 reflect that goal.

    Jadey Pareja, a chemist with the Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC), leads five scientists in the Protective Equipment Test Branch who test and analyze the carbon materials that will be integrated into mask filters for Soldiers’ protective masks. ECBC is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development, and Engineering Command, one of AMC’s major subordinate commands and a leader in basic scientific research areas including nanotechnology, armor, robotics, the human domain, fuel-efficient vehicles, and simulation. (U.S. Army photo by Dan Lafontaine)

    Responsible Reset Task Force
    Perhaps one of our most significant accomplishments in the past year was concluding the Iraq phase of the Responsible Reset Task Force (R2TF) mission. The mission included retrograding 3.9 million pieces of equipment, including 30,000 wheeled vehicles; reallocating more than $7 million in equipment from the war in Iraq to other federal agencies; and reusing $1.3 billion of equipment from the war in Iraq for the surge in Afghanistan.

    R2TF was designed to consolidate data to maintain visibility of equipment departing from Iraq using these imperatives: visibility, accountability, velocity, and triage forward. In early May, the last Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle to leave Iraq was returned to the United States after a five-month reset process. Its return to the States symbolized AMC’s success in increasing the velocity and capabilities of responsible reset.

    Lead Materiel Integrator
    AMC efforts to develop a world-class operations center have enabled us to establish systems and capabilities to maintain situational awareness of ongoing operations around the globe. AMC’s operations center can determine what container a particular piece of equipment should go into, and what ship to put it on, to get it to the right reset facility or the right unit. That visibility increases the flow of materiel, saving the Army time and money.

    It is that capability that led the Secretary of the Army to designated AMC as the
    LMI on March 22, 2011. As the LMI, AMC has the mission to synchronize the distribution and redistribution of Army materiel in accordance with Army priorities and directives.

    While our mission has remained the same over the past half-decade, we are a fundamentally different organization than we were at our inception, and much of that change has occurred over the past 10 years.

    Workers overhaul heavy and light combat vehicles at Anniston Army Depot, AL. AMC seeks to transform the sustainment of our organic industrial base capabilities while providing cost-effective solutions for the Nation.

    Another success is our transition to the Enhanced Army Global Logistics Enterprise (EAGLE), a move that revolutionizes the contracting process. It expands competition and reduces acquisition lead time.

    EAGLE incorporates directives on better buying power and optimization of service contracting, while increasing opportunities for small businesses. This fundamentally new way of doing business, which is expected to decrease future installation logistics costs, is tied to AMC’s realignment of Directorates of Logistics.

    Organic Industrial Base
    One area of concern for AMC is the modernization of aging facilities. Many of the physical plants that house our organic industrial base were built for World War II and have reached DOD’s benchmark for recapitalization.

    This presents us with an $8 billion conundrum: how to resource this important requirement in an era of fiscal constraint. Also, as wartime manufacturing loads are reduced, these facilities must look for new strategies to keep production lines up and running, providing exciting new opportunities for public-private partnerships.

    Vehicles drive aboard the USNS Red Cloud at Wharf Alpha, Joint Base Charleston, SC. The vessel, bound for South Korea, contains part of U.S. Army Sustainment Command’s (ASC’s) global collection of prepositioned equipment, kept at the ready both ashore and afloat. ASC, a major subordinate command of AMC, serves as its executing agent for the Army’s Lead Materiel Integrator. AMC in turn supports and is fully integrated with the four major functions of DOD’s global logistics mission: maintenance, transportation, supply, and logistics management. (Photo by Jon Connor, ASC Public Affairs)

    AMC also recognizes the significant challenges ahead in returning equipment from Afghanistan. One thing is clear: The challenges of reset and retrograde from Afghanistan are not the same as those from Iraq.

    As we prepare for the Afghanistan R2TF mission, sustainment, battle damage repair, and retrograde operations remain constant and will occur simultaneously until both the wartime and R2TF missions are complete. Upward of 3 million pieces of equipment must be moved within a landlocked and land-constrained environment, concomitant with ongoing operations such as training the Afghan National Army and other security forces.

    Looking Forward
    Fortunately, AMC has the most experienced and professional Soldiers, civilians, and contractors in our history, who will continue to meet the challenges we face today while preparing for the threats of tomorrow.

    As we look to the future with our strategic focus, we must take a fundamentally different approach to the way we do business. This approach will maximize efficiencies, eliminate redundancies, and prepare us for an era of persistent conflict characterized by declining resources, uncertainty, and complexity.

    Moving toward Army 2020, AMC will continue to serve as the single entry point for logistics support. Our goal is to be fully networked and transparent—able to respond rapidly to the needs of the Army and the Joint Force.


    • —U.S. Army Materiel Command Public Affairs

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