JMC analyst earns Green Belt, makes tracking civilian deployments easier
June 26, 2013
ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. -- The Joint Munitions Command now has a better tracking mechanism for its many deployed and deploying civilians. Thanks to a recent Green Belt project, JMC now tracks, reports and counts its civilians with greater ease while they're away.
The goal of the Green Belt project included decreasing rework labor hours from 34.8 percent to less than 5 percent. Counting and including JMC headquarters or government-owned, contractor-operated civilians, the resource management division (G8) now boasts a better method of accountability and most importantly a better manpower assessment for the command.
Leading this project to completion, Aaron Kunert, financial analyst for JMC G8, was recognized in early June by Brig. Gen. Kevin G. O'Connell, commander, JMC.
O'Connell presented Kunert with his Green Belt certification, name plate and commander's coin -- an award for excellence.
Green Belt certification alone is reason to celebrate but consider Kunert spent 32 months completing his project. And during that time, he transitioned across several offices receiving additional valuable training.
"I was a member of the Manpower Division when I started the project so I experienced the pains from the inconsistent (or lack of) information received in our office when JMC civilian employees deployed.
"The project improved the accuracy of our manpower end-strength reporting and command pay execution, increased the credibility of JMC G8, and reduced the rework necessary to correct ATAAPS (automated time, attendance and production system) errors for civilian deployees," he said.
Also according to Kunert: "When JMC civilians deploy, it is vital for JMC G8 to know who, when, where, and why they are deploying (and returning from deployment). This information has a direct impact on our reports which are visible to higher headquarters.
"Without this information JMC G8 is not able to efficiently manage our manpower (or end strength) and we are unable to accurately budget, track, and execute our command pay funding. Improved reporting is essential at all times but especially while we are in (a) time of diminishing resources."
To achieve this civilian deployment turnaround, Kunert and other key team members used a variety of continuous process improvement tools including the cause & effect diagram, brainstorming, and the nominal group technique--all crucial in analyzing the data and developing a viable solution to the project.
With JMC civilians routinely deploy to Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait and Southwest Asia, the command found a need for a new tracking method because at the time there was no special process.
Specifically, "The more pressing reason was the accuracy and reliability of our manpower and command pay reporting to higher headquarters. The baseline data included nearly $400,000 of cost transfers that were required to maintain the accuracy of our command pay reporting," said Kunert.
"JMC G8 was notified of personnel changes once they were processed by CPAC (civilian personnel advisory center) and JMC G1. In many cases, the lag in reporting deployment notifications led to unnecessary rework by JMC G8 and timekeepers," said Kunert.
(Timekeepers report accurate duty hours and attendance to the command.)
LARs or Logistics Ammunition Representatives deploy more routinely than the average civilian; however, their process for tracking is not applicable for the problem at hand.
As Kunert explains, "LARs are on more a structured deployment rotation and therefore it is easier to project and track their deployments. LARs also have a person within the Readiness Directorate dedicated to tracking their deployments. Other civilian 'deployees' can deploy through a variety of channels so there wasn't a centralized point of contact or system in place to capture their deployments in a timely manner."
So in addition to a more streamlined system, this project included the creation of JMC form 690-28. Form 690-28 includes basic information but also deployment command information, effective deployment & return date, deployment location & mission, points of contact as well as internal budget information.
Of those pieces of information, the deployment command information proves to be most valuable noting which command the 'deployee' is deploying on behalf of, which impacts G8 reporting in many ways.
"If an employee deploys on behalf of JMC then they stay on our rolls (which means they stay in our end strength) and their pay is managed accordingly. If an employee deploys on behalf of the Corps of Engineers, they are no longer on our rolls (not in our end strength - but they have return rights). And we don't pay for any of their salary," said Kunert.
These civilian deployment reports are visible to JMC's higher headquarters, Army Materiel Command. AMC holds JMC G8 responsible for the accuracy of these reports.
The project improved the integrity of reporting specifically civilian "work years" and command pay execution. Ultimately, this project led to a Type II cost avoidance of $1,601 per year.
And for senior JMC command leaders, this project initiated a notable aspect for Kunert: "the improved communication among all parties (mainly -- Army Sustainment Command G8, JMC G1, JMC G8, JMC deployees, their timekeepers, and their supervisors) involved in the deployment process."
From its headquarters in Rock Island, Ill., JMC operates a nationwide network of conventional ammunition manufacturing plants and storage depots, and provides on-site ammunition experts to U.S. combat units wherever they are stationed or deployed. JMC's customers are U.S. forces of all military services, other U.S. government agencies, and allied nations.