Life Cycle Management Initiative
What is it?
On Aug. 2, 2004, the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics and Technology [ALT]) and the Army Materiel Command (AMC) Commanding General, signed a Memorandum of Agreement that launched the Army’s Life Cycle Management (LCM) Initiative. It is intended to strategically and operationally align structure, processes, and responsibilities to enable greater synergies and improve the effectiveness and efficiency of all organizations involved in LCM. The LCM Initiative accelerated the implementation of Army Regulation 70-1 Acquisition Policy, dated December 2003. The strategic and operational processes between the AMC major subordinate commands and the program executive offices (PEOs) are integrated at the program, project, and product manager levels by way of integrated product and process teams (IPTs) led by the product manager as the Life Cycle Manager.
The organizations participate in a traditional project matrix management structure where the product manager provides the overall direction pertaining to what needs to be done and when, while the functional managers provide resources to the integrated team, continuously improve business processes to support the integrated team, and execute the work to be done. The LCM Initiative is the Army’s implementation of Directive 5000.1 from the Department of Defense (DoD), Total Life Cycle System Management. The goals of the initiative are to enhance the input of logisticians into acquisition processes pertaining to current and future sustainment and readiness, reduce costs, improve quality, get products to the Soldier faster, and implement a more holistic approach to product development and system support.
What has the Army done?
Four LCM Commands have been organized along the following commodity lines: 1) tank, automotive and armaments; 2) aviation and missile; 3) communications and electronics; and 4) Joint munitions and lethality. All LCM Commands and PEOs have entered into a collaborative partnership and aligned their resources to support the value produced to the Soldiers. The Department of the Army–led Lean Six Sigma approach is being used to identify, measure, and implement continuous process improvement. In addition, the Assistant Secretary of the Army (ALT) Military Deputy established a Deputy for Life Cycle Integration located at AMC to lead efforts to enhance effectiveness among the secretariat staff and the headquarters staff at the AMC. Also, the AMC has developed 50 process maps illustrating the activities and process flow among the Army Sustainment Command, the Army field support brigades, and the LCM Commands and the headquarters of the AMC to strengthen and integrate support for the Soldier in theater.
What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?
The Assistant Secretary of the Army (ALT) is currently conducting an organizational assessment. As a result of analysis and recommendations, LCM is likely to continue and become integrated into policies at the Army level.
Why is this important to the Army?
By implementing LCM with a Lean Six Sigma methodology, the Assistant Secretary of the Army (ALT) strives to prevent product quality defects caused by the lack of resources while improving the capability provided to Soldiers. As the Secretary equips the Army, we cannot accept risk that may unnecessarily put our Soldiers in increased danger.