FORT BELVOIR, Va. –
The Defense Logistics Agency is working with the Marine Corps to complete the third leg of a 2005 Base Realignment and Closure directive requiring the military services to transfer supply, storage and distribution functions to DLA.
DLA Distribution assumed retail storage and distribution roles at Marine Corps industrial sites in Barstow, California, and Albany, Georgia, following the BRAC directive, but the Marine Corps retained supply functions.
Now, DLA Land and Maritime, which manages 2 million unique parts for several thousand sea- and land-based weapon systems, is leading an industrial supply integration initiative with Marine Corps industrial sites that is expected to result in improved demand planning and forecasing as well as streamlined processes.
“As the department’s combat logistics agency, DLA is able to leverage its core competency of supply management to directly support one of our military customer’s most important efforts – industrial production,” DLA Land and Maritime Deputy Commander Kenneth D. Watson said.
The initiative is scheduled to be completed October 2022 and is also expected to increase auditability, lessen redundancy and increase other efficiencies, added David Clifton, executive deputy of the Marine Corps Logistics Command.
“At the end of the day, we are simply integrating our efforts in order for DLA and LOGCOM to focus on their organic strengths” Clifton said. “Working together, this ISI effort helps us capitalize on DLA strengths while we focus on our business of managing readiness for the Corps through depot-level maintenance.”
LOGCOM conducted a business-case analysis in 2018 to identify opportunities to improve effectiveness, efficiency and costs of managing inventory at the Marine Corps industrial sites. Soon after, in June 2018, then-DLA Director Army Lt. Gen. Darrell K. Williams approved the ISI project’s concept.
“Our ability to directly collaborate with the customer on their forecast, along with agility in responding to changing production plans and priorities, will enhance parts availability, thereby allowing the Marine Corps production plants to focus on their primary mission of production work,” Watson said.
DLA Land and Maritime will work closely with Marine Depot Maintenance Command through all aspects of production preparation and execution, he added.
“DLA working right alongside the customer in this production-support role allows us to tackle issues as a united team and increase value. And the depth and breadth of the forward teams we’re creating will greatly enhance DLA’s support to MDMC,” Watson continued.
The project is being co-led by DLA Headquarters ISI Project Manager Marian Unterman and DLA Land and Maritime ISI Project Manager Jim Wagner. A DLA Industrial Support Activity is also being created at each industrial site to facilitate the partnership between DLA and Marine Corps customers. A Marine Corps lieutenant colonel will serve as commander of the DLA Industrial Support Activity for DLA Land and Maritime.
DLA Distribution will also support the initiative by providing supplies at Marine Corps industrial sites.
“The integration of DLA Distribution becomes a force multiplier, delivering increased levels of inventory accuracy and auditability while providing timely and accurate movement of materiel to and from the maintenance lines, as well as direct delivery to operational units to meet USMC weapons systems readiness goals,” DLA Distribution Deputy Commander Perry Knight said.
The first year of the ISI project focused mainly on increasing efficiencies of as-is business processes between the Albany and Barstow industrial sites, specifically in the areas of process standardization and inventory rationalization, which reduces excess stock to a level appropriate for planned production.
“While LOGCOM focused on aligning its processes between the two production plants and reducing excess stock, the DLA team provided past implementation experience and guidance to facilitate the Marine Corps in its future transition to DLA business processes,” said George Atwood, executive director for DLA Logistics Policy and Strategic Programs.
The team’s next milestones include establishing a memorandum of agreement and developing IT integration processes between LOGCOM and DLA.
“Initiatives such as the DLA/USMC industrial supply initiative also provide outstanding opportunities for DLA’s major subordinate commands to strengthen their partnerships as they collaborate and optimize the various touch points between DLA Land and Maritime’s supply mission and DLA Distribution’s storage and distribution mission,” Knight added.