News | Sept. 14, 2017

Critical system's continuity in emergencies now assured thanks to joint DLA-DISA effort

By Sara Moore, DLA Information Operations

The Defense Logistics Agency, in collaboration with the Defense Information Systems Agency, successfully completed the implementation of a full continuity of operations, or COOP, environment for the DLA Enterprise Business System environment August 21. 

Implementing the COOP environment involved a months-long effort to transfer the EBS environment from its primary operating site to an alternate site, then back again. This exercise ensures the agency has a fully established alternate site for EBS and the ability to transfer operations in case of an emergency. 

The DLA EBS environment provides a common, integrated infrastructure for business intelligence and business operations. Capabilities supported include supply and demand planning, order fulfillment, procurement, financial management, and customer service for energy and non-energy commodities as well as property management. The EBS solution manages all of DLA's supply chains and supports 22,000 users operating in 28 countries worldwide. 

Over the past nine months, a DLA team consisting of over 325 DLA Information Operations associates and EBS end-users collaborated with DISA to support the transfer of the full EBS environment from its primary operating site to the new alternate COOP site. This transfer was called a “failover.” This effort also included a “failback,” a transfer of EBS operations back to the primary site to complete a viable disaster recovery plan. 

The failover began on April 21, when EBS was brought down and the DLA and DISA teams worked around the clock over the weekend to transfer operations to the alternate COOP site. EBS was back up and open for business by early morning Monday, April 24. Then on Friday, August 18, those same teams repeated this process in reverse to complete the failback of EBS operations to the primary site; EBS was available to users before the beginning of the business day Monday, August 21. 

The DLA and DISA teams executed a 120-line task schedule while coordinating the failover and failback over one main teleconference line. The team held multiple collaboration, troubleshooting, and testing calls to quickly overcome any issues and challenges throughout the process. DLA senior leaders remained engaged during both weekends, staying up-to-date and making key decisions via scheduled executive checkpoints. 

The superior collaboration of skillsets, long hours and dedication of the DLA team members were key to the resounding success of this critical effort to ensure the continued uninterrupted support of DLA customers, said Susan Vanmeter, portfolio manager for EBS in DLA Information Operations.