New mission draws high visibility within the Army
June 22, 2010
- Sierra designated as the Army's consolidation and distribution center for the Clothing Management Office
- Sierra currently operates the largest Army Standard Army Retail Supply System (SARSS) SSA in the worlld
Sierra Army Depot (SIAD) currently provides for the receipt, identification, condition code classification, storage, Care of Supplies in Storage (COSIS), security, accountability, disposal, and shipment of all excess Non-Army Managed Items (NAMI) and some Army Managed Items (AMI). This is our AJ1 program. We (at Sierra) have more experience than any other organization in the Army or DLA with building and expanding the nation\'s only capability to receive this excess "dirty" stock - and manage that stock in order to realize some positive value for the Army (both unit readiness and sales generated back to the Army Working Capital Fund (AWCF). Sierra currently operates the largest Army Standard Army Retail Supply System (SARSS) SSA operation in the world performing redistribution operations to support all DoD Services. Since program start-up in FY04, the Depot has realized a total cost avoidance to AWCF of more than $300 million over the cost to run this business at Sierra. Sierra has almost $100 million worth of stock currently on hand; the Depot maintains an inventory accuracy rate well above the Army standard (an amazing feat for "dirty stock") and have achieved a less than .05 percent denial rate; and have built the capability to quickly move the stock to a using unit - 98.5 percent of all requests ship to the unit the same day as the MRO (again - well above Army standard for "new" stock). In addition to the AJ1 Reverse Pipeline mission, Sierra has recently been designated as the Army's consolidation and distribution center for the Clothing Management Office (CMO), performing Brigade-level Organizational Clothing & Individual Equipment (OCIE) RESET Operations. Based on the Depot's expertise in dealing with returned excess materiel from Southwest Asia (SWA), SIAD now performs similar-type functions on clothing to receive, identify, classify and bring to record new OCIE directly from Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), "excess" OCIE from Clothing and Issue Facilities (CIF's) as well as returned items from SWA (e.g., posts/camps/stations). Sierra then subsequently ship reset "kits" to CIF's worldwide based on CMO direction. Most recently, Sierra Army Depot was designated as the main Non Standard-Equipment (NS-E) retrograde support location for the Army. The NS-E equipment in Theater has undergone a rigorous three tier vetting process, whereby the "owning" Life Cycle Management Command votes on disposition - based on their ability to keep the equipment for some future need and directs shipment to one of several designated receiving locations to which Sierra is one of them. The NS-E retrograde process was established over several months of "negotiation", finally briefed by the Commanding General for the Army Sustainment Command - accepted by the Deputy Commanding General of the Army Materiel Command - and under constant review by HQDA G4. The Depot recently highlighted their unique ability to process the materiel during a recent visit on May 24, to Lt. Gen. James H. Pillsbury, deputy commanding general, US Army Materiel Command, Mr. James Dwyer, SES, AMC deputy G-3, Support Operations, and Mr. Michael Brown, SES, HQ DA G-4, Supply, Policy, Program & Processes. ** NS-E Processing at the Depot As the main NS-E retrograde support location for the Army, Sierra's roll is to receive NS-E in a container, tri-wall, box or pallet - by either by rail, truck or air. Sierra can receive the projected 20,000 additional containers in the timeframe established, process the containers, and bring the materiel to record in a little over 34 months at the manning levels identified. Sierra recently completed set up and facilitization of a second receiving (and storage) location on Depot. The Depot is prepared to move to a 24/7 operation to meet the stated target of receipt and bringing assets to record (materiel identification and classification becomes the choke-point) along with other required personnel increases to staff the entire operation. Sierra would need to increase the staffing of both Transportation and the internal rail crews to handle this increased activity. We would also contract with the local Union Pacific railways to augment rail support as needed. No additional materiel handling equipment (MHE) is needed to sustain this level of activity other than the acquisition of one Container Reach Stacker. Since the shipping activity would increase due to larger inventories, SIAD would add portable docks at the shipping building to facilitate increased truck volume. Depending on the amount of single national stock number (NSN) materiels received from containers, the Depot would utilize containers as inventoried storage sites. Workers will pre-stage the containers in the container holding yard until designated for unloading operations, and then move the full container to the loading dock at their NS-E receiving location, verify the integrity of the sealing mechanism, unload the container, and move the materiel into the receiving warehouse. The Sierra NS-E receiving crew will then run a scan of the Army War Reserve Deployment System (AWRDS) data associated with that particular container, and process all the materiel individually thru their receiving area (physically inspect each item for proper identification and classification) to verify nomenclature, condition code, unit of issue, quantity, and NSN - with the associated AWRDS data. If all the information matches, Sierra will then bring each item to record in their NS-E specific Property Book Unit Supply Enhanced (PBUSE) system - using an automated (or manual) data feed between AWRDS and PBUSE. Any mismatches will generate a supply discrepancy report (SDR), or a transportation discrepancy report (TDR) back to the shipping activity. ** NS-E Weapons: Sierra Army Depot has also been designated as the Army's main retrograde support location for receiving, securing, and storing NS-E Weapons. Sierra will receive the container/box/pallet by rail or truck. Prior to arrival at Sierra, they will review incoming materiel data (scan the AWRDS Data Files) to identify which specific serial numbered containers have weapons inside. Those containers will be removed from the train/truck at the classification yard and moved to the NS-E secure area. The receiving crews will verify the integrity of the sealing mechanism, open and unload the container, and move the crates, tri-walls, or boxes of weapons into the storage location. The Sierra NS-E weapons receiving crew will then unload each weapon individually from the crate, tri-wall, or box - clear each weapon in the on-site clearing barrel - and install the clearing flag. Each work station will be manned by a two-person team, who will then inspect and process each weapon individually thru their receiving area (physically inspect each item for proper identification and classification) to verify nomenclature, condition code, serial number, quantity, and NSN - with the associated documentation inside the shipping container. After cleared for storage, the processing crew will remove the clearing flag, and pack the weapons with associated documentation into the appropriate container. Each container will be banded, sealed and marked IAW MILSTD 129P, Change 4, containing the 5 key elements for property accountability, (nomenclature, quantity, location, condition code, MCN or NSN). Containers will then be loaded on trucks for immediate transport to the appropriate secure storage location. Most recently, Sierra Army Depot sent a team to the Retrograde Processing Center in Kuwait, in support of an R2TF request to identify ways to help increase the throughput velocity of containers of excess materiel out of Theater. The Sierra team provided their After Action Review to the R2TF leadership and the leaders at the W2N excess processing yard. The team identified several short-term processing "quick-fixes" that we believe are critical to implement at the W2N site to increase their throughput velocity (install processing lines using waist high roller conveyors to move the materiel to dedicated receiving stations, provide increased shade from the sun, automate some of the manual paperwork process on the receiving line, reduce the time spent identifying and classifying obvious "scrap" destined for DRMO). They also identified some longer term "fixes" that Sierra could help with (deploy a small team from Sierra for up to 6 months to help install the "quick-fixes" and work directly with the W2N leadership to refine their processes and train workers on the processing lines). Finally, the Sierra team recommended W2N initiate a pilot test of 100-300 containers (unload the tri-walls from the containers - perform a quick look to verify no hazards - remove any visible clearly unserviceable items - repack the tri-walls into another container - perform customs & agriculture clearance procedures - ship the 100-300 containers to Sierra to identify and classify the materiel and bring to record in SARSS). Before things get moving too quickly, Sierra leadership has some essential information that needs to be provided to the R2TF leadership such as a rough order magnitude (ROM) cost estimate to send a small team to Kuwait; and provide the W2N leadership a detailed equipment facilitization list and drawing for set-up, and Job Descriptions for Materiel Identifiers. Sierra will need program funding and direction to proceed any further. About 1,200 personnel are employed at Sierra, which is located in the Sierra Mountains of northeastern Calironia. Sierra Army Depot is part of the U.S. Army TACOM Life Cycle Management Command. Headquartered at Warren, Mich., The command's mission is to develop, acquire, field, and sustain Soldier and ground systems for the Warfighter through the integration of effective and timely Acquisition, Logistics, and cutting-edge Technology.