What is it?
The Logistics Enterprise consists of the logistics architecture, organization, personnel, processes, and governance and is the operating environment that enables the holistic approach to sustaining the Army. Management of the enterprise is accomplished by integrating these 5 logistics elements to enable logisticians at all levels to see across the enterprise. This allows synchronized efforts across all echelons of Army operations and connectivity to Joint, DOD and commercial sectors. This corporate view of logistics information can then be used to optimize the enterprise, taking full advantage of available resources.
Logisticians are able to provide better support to the warfighter by maintaining visibility, control and accountability and directing the distribution of assets in supply chains that span the globe. This ability requires state of the art automated systems, processes, organizations and personnel across the entire enterprise.
What has the Army done?
We have implemented the Single Army Logistics Enterprise (SALE) that connects the national to tactical levels of sustainment. SALE is a fully integrated knowledge environment that builds, sustains, and generates warfighting capability. The dynamic distribution of unit equipment under the current operational environment significantly increased property accountability requirements. The recently fielded Property Book Unit Supply Enhanced (PBUSE), a component of SALE, tracks and provides visibility of property. We used PBUSE during the Operation Total Recall and increased asset visibility from 21.8 million items to 3.4 billion items.
The Army has changed the way it is organized to focus on brigade size units. The Army and Theater Sustainment Commands, Expeditionary Sustainment Commands, Sustainment Brigades, and Brigade Support Battalions are all combat service support organizations established to operate within the Logistics Enterprise. Each organizational type has been successfully deployed under the current tactical operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Army has re-looked the balance of force structure in our reserve forces considering their significant Logistics capability. The Army National Guard and Army Reserve are being called on to do more than ever imagined. We must “operationlize” these forces to be more than just a strategic reserve.
What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?
We activated a new Logistics Branch that teaches our logistics leaders to be multiskilled and capable of integrating logistics-enterprise support. The organizational transformation described above increased the number of multi-functional units by 39%. This means our officers must be able to comprehend the complexities of a global supply chain and understand how to integrate logistics enterprise capabilities at the tactical level. Then, when they are assigned at the strategic and operational level they must have a certain degree of business acumen, be able to manage emerging technologies and be well versed in equipment life cycle management. It is imperative that we develop a new type of logistician.
We have established a Logistics Governance Structure that will define objectives and delineate responsibilities for operating within the logistics enterprise. The requirement to sustain our Army in an era of persistent conflict drives us to review policies, processes, and resources in support of our Combatant Commanders. We’ve established an Army Force Generation (ARFORGEN) process which changes the culture of our Army. In the past, unit commanders believed in unit ownership of equipment. Today we must believe that it is “Army” equipment and we must strategically move assets where needed to be adaptive to emerging contingency requirements.
Why is this important to the Army?
We are supporting an Army at War. A war we have been engaged in longer than any other conflict in recent history. Our two most critical logistics tasks are ensuring the readiness of our current force to meet operational requirement and being adaptive enough to change the force to meet future requirements. We are a smaller Army challenged to operate in a more dangerous strategic environment requiring exponentially greater deployments than before. We must get this right. It is a tactical challenge unmatched in recent memory. However, our corps of professionals can operate within the Logistics Enterprise to provide more flexible applications of logistics capability in this complex operational environment. We are called upon to manage a $230 billion enterprise and we must do that in a way that is responsible and responsive. Logistics Enterprise management allows us to harness the unrivaled industrial capability of our strategic partners to meet combatant commander requirements abroad, as well as security requirements here in the homeland.
Mr. Terry Battle