Sustainment System Mission Command retires, moves logistics to the web
June 27, 2014
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (June 27, 2014) - The most widely used logistics command and control system in the Army can now be accessed online.
In a ceremony held on June 20, Sustainment System Mission Command (S2MC), the organization that developed Battle Command Sustainment Support System (BCS3) and associated logistics command and control products, was retired. All current and future development efforts will be web-based, placing the software and hardware systems into sustainment.
BCS3 is one of several Mission Command capabilities that are moving from computer to web-based, made possible by a standard framework called the Command Post Computing Environment (CP CE). The CP CE consolidates mission command systems using apps and displays them on a common, geospatial digital map that is hosted on a single workstation.
"Today is a great day, but also a sad day," said Col. Michael Thurston, project manager for Mission Command (PM MC), to which TMC is assigned. "We are not only celebrating S2MC and its long legacy of providing logistics capabilities but we are also bidding farewell to Calvin Pilgrim, who has successfully led the organization for the past five years."
Soldiers and Marines have come to rely on BCS3 and its enhanced version, BCS3-Node Management (NM), to provide commanders with actionable logistics information throughout the last decade of conflict. These legacy systems are now transitioning into sustainment with the Software Engineering Center, also located at Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), as the Army advances web-based applications to enhance capabilities.
"It is said that technology and logistics are the linchpin for any combat operation," Thurston said. "Every single time we put a Soldier on the road we put that Soldier at risk; however, we have many testimonials to prove that the work Calvin and his team have put forth has saved Soldier lives."
Pilgrim's tenure with S2MC began when he was deputy product manager for BCS3 at Ft. Belvoir, Va. Under his leadership, BCS3 and its associated product BCS3-NM evolved into world class logistics applications for both Army and Marine Corps users. The systems enhanced access to services and improved logistics functions and operations in garrison and in combat, increasing overall readiness of the force.
Most notably, he transformed BCS3 and BCS3-NM into web-based applications to be fully compliant with the Army's Common Operating Environment (COE) despite resource constraints. The COE is an approved set of computing standards that are enabling the Army to rapidly develop secure, interoperable applications.
Users currently access these powerful logistics web apps to address the areas of in-transit visibility, asset visibility, logistics reporting, and combat power to track fuel, ammunition, vehicle parts and convoys, and then tie that information to today's assets and how that relates to tomorrow's battle requirements.
"Our team developed and deployed the most apps of any organization in PM MC, and the Soldiers and Marines continually provide us with excellent feedback," Pilgrim said. "That means BCS3 is here to stay, and the web app capabilities make this an exciting time for the logistics community."
Throughout his tenure, Pilgrim maintained a "hands-on" approach to BCS3 development, fielding, training and maintenance including several visits into the U.S. Central Command Area of Responsibility.
"Today is a bittersweet day," Pilgrim told the S2MC workforce. "Bitter, because I am leaving you. Having lived and worked among you, I feel as though I am a member of the family, but it is sweet because I get to share in all the successes."
In addition to driving BCS3's web-enabled capabilities, one of those successes was systematically moving and managing the data center that pulls and aggregates all of the logistical information used within BCS3. Under Pilgrim's leadership, the user base for BCS3 has increased by nearly 7,000 users.
"What has made this job an absolute delight was that the staff always expended the necessary efforts to do a superb job, regardless of the task," Pilgrim said.
The S2MC team will continue to provide logistics capabilities to the Soldier as part of the Tactical Mission Command (TMC) organization, also under PM MC.
"Change is hard, but change is good because it provides great opportunities for success," Thurston said. "We have that opportunity now, and the reason we have that opportunity is due to the great work that Calvin has done."