C&T employees visit supplier, improve understanding of industry

By Jason Kaneshiro DLA Troop Support Public Affairs

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Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support Clothing and Textiles employees visited a vendor in New Jersey, a visit planned based on feedback from the 2014 DLA Culture Survey. The 2016 Culture Survey opens March 29.

VINELAND, New Jersey – Twelve Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support employees from the Clothing and Textiles supply chain toured a manufacturing plant that has been making uniforms for the U.S. military since World War II.

The employees visited DeRossi & Son March 2 to see the manufacturing process that turns bolts of cloth into coats for Army and Air Force dress uniforms. The trip served as an opportunity for the employees to gain a better understanding of the supply chain and their contributions to support the warfighter.

Employees that primarily work with customers were chosen for this trip as they don’t regularly interact with suppliers, said Ashley Liddle, an integrated supplier team chief.

“We have local contractors that are not that far away, and DeRossi is one of them,” Liddle said.

Liddle, a member of C&T’s culture improvement team, said that the visit was planned based on feedback gained through the 2014 DLA Culture Survey, in which C&T employees expressed a desire to better understand their role within the supply chain.

Ken Drexinger, a demand planner, says that he has a newfound respect for the manufacturing process and the people that work in the factories.

“The work happens so fast that it requires a high level of focus and attention to detail,” Drexinger said.

Drexinger said that he thinks it would be beneficial for all employees to have the opportunity to visit one of the vendors.

“I think if everyone understands that bigger picture, your job becomes more meaningful,” Drexinger said.

Liddle said that the CIT is planning a similar visit for employees who work with suppliers to meet with customers.

“Most of them have never been to a customer site,” Liddle said.

Other CIT initiatives in the C&T supply chain include classes on customer outreach and engagement.

“So far we’ve gotten really positive feedback,” Liddle said. “I hope it continues and we’re striving to keep that up.”