Life Cycle Management Initiative

What is it?  On 2 August 2004, the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics and Technology) (ASA (ALT)) and the Army Materiel Command (AMC) Commanding General, signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) that launched the Army’s Life Cycle Management (LCM) initiative.   It is intended to strategically align significant elements of A, L & T responsibilities and authority to enable greater synergies which lead to improvements in effectiveness and efficiency for all organizations involved in LCM.  

The strategic and operational processes between the AMC Major Subordinate Commands and the Program Executive Offices (PEO) are seamlessly integrated into Integrated Product and Process Teams with the PM as the Life Cycle Manager “trail boss” guiding the team efforts.  The LCM initiative is the Army’s implementation of the Department of Defense’s (DoD) Total Life Cycle System Management directive from Department of Defense Directive (DoDD) 5000.1.  Logisticians have enhanced input into acquisition processes to influence future and enhance current sustainment and readiness.  The life cycle management initiative provides an integrated, holistic approach to product development and system support.

What has the Army Done?  Four Life Cycle Management Commands (LCMC) have been stood up by commodity for: 1) tank, automotive and armaments; 2) aviation and missile; 3) communications and electronics; and 4) joint munitions and lethality.  Through collaboration each LCMC and PEO has aligned its resources to support the value produced to the war fighters.  Each has begun to implement a Lean Six Sigma (LSS) approach to identifying projects, selecting the initial high priority targets and training the workforce.  In addition, the ASA (ALT) Military Deputy established a Deputy for Life Cycle Integration located at AMC, to lead efforts to enhance effectiveness among the two headquarters staffs at ASA (ALT) and AMC.  The Army Sustainment Command, the Army Field Support Brigades, and the ALT Futures Center, have also been established to strengthen and integrate support for the soldier and joint war fighter in theater.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?  The ASA (ALT) plans to continue the LCM initiative, integrate it at the enterprise level and measure the results through the deployment of LSS.  Future efforts will focus on process integration where appropriate to enhance effectiveness and efficiency.  The Chemical Materiels Agency is being considered for a LCMC during FY07.

Why is this important to the Army?  The Army cannot afford to use the same processes that require past levels of resources (people, time and money).  As the Army has taken cuts, many processes have remained the same, causing significant delays, heavy workload demands.  By implementing the LCM initiative with a LSS methodology, the ASA (ALT) strives to prevent quality deficiencies and product defects caused by the lack of resources.  As ASA (ALT) equips the Army, we cannot accept this risk that may put our war fighters in increased danger.