News | Dec. 9, 2020

DLA Aviation soars above the competition, named best of the best in Defense Department Supply Chain Excellence

By Leon Moore DLA Aviation Public Affairs

The Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Sustainment named Defense Logistics Agency Aviation as the winner of the 2019 Department of Defense Award for Supply Chain Excellence.

The award honors organizations that made exceptional progress through innovative development or adoption of best supply chain practices. It also provides a showcase for innovative management and technology tools used to improve supply chain efficiency and effectiveness to enhance warfighter support.

This annual award spotlights a superlative DOD organization that has:

  • Recognized the critical role supply chain performance plays in reaching organizational goals.
  • Committed to optimizing its supply chain performance.
  • Demonstrated this commitment through the implementation of supply chain improvement projects.

In the nomination package, DLA Aviation Commander Air Force Brig. Gen. David Sanford laid out his case for DLA Aviation winning the award, stating; DLA Aviation took a leadership role in the effort to improve the Air Force’s F-16 and F-22 readiness, as well as the Navy’s F/A-18E/F in response to the Secretary of Defense’s direction to improve aircraft mission capable rates to 80%. DLA Aviation's challenge was to improve material availability of more than 101,000 aircraft parts for the F-16, more than 3,000 aircraft parts for the F-22 and 56,000 aircraft parts for the F/A-18 aircraft portfolio.

DLA Aviation determined that a 90% material availability goal was needed to achieve mission capability rates desired by the Secretary of Defense. The DLA Aviation team reviewed internal processes and overhauled its demand and supply planning, material sourcing, supply chain inventory reporting and metrics categories to achieve the material availability targets to support improved aircraft mission capability rates. These efforts enabled DLA Aviation to meet and often exceed the 90% material availability goal.

Sanford concluded the nomination by stating: At every chance, DLA Aviation took opportunities to lean forward and take calculated risks to enable the [military] services to improve aircraft mission capability rates, all while still maintaining the multitude of other capabilities to the United States government and foreign partners as the sole combat support agency of the Defense Department. It is for these distinct reasons that DLA Aviation should be awarded the 2019 Department of Defense Award for Supply Chain Excellence.

Patrick Driscoll, who was a logistics management specialist within DLA Aviation’s Customer Operations Directorate’s Air Force Customer Facing Division’s Strategic Branch at the time, led Aviation’s SECDEF MC-80 effort, an assignment he said he was given only two weeks after he started his job.

“I was quite surprised. At the time, I didn’t know the difference between a customer account specialist and a material planner,” Driscoll said.

He said he was quickly impressed by the ownership each directorate took on, from the weapon systems program managers and customer account specialists working with Air Force and Navy customers, analysts providing National Item Identification Number health and sustainability analysis; demand planners forecasting consumption rates and setting ordering levels, material planners researching problem NIINs and reestablishing purchase requests, pre-and post-award contracting officers reaching out to vendors for contractual resolution and advice provided by Aviation’s legal and policy teams.

“I believe the MC-80 effort was successful because our team took time to identify the problem, define a goal and let each member explain their role in reaching the goal before rolling out with our plan,” he said.

For a complete list of previous winners, click here.