Anniston Army Depot trains its future through DLAMP
February 14, 2013
ANNISTON ARMY DEPOT, Ala. -- Anniston Army Depot has long been a proponent of growing its own workforce -- from the high school and college cooperative education programs to the Depot Leadership and Management Program.
DLAMP began in 2006 and, for its first five years, was hosted by Jacksonville State University. JSU used its civilian contacts to train the depot's future leaders, and training typically took students away from the installation for the duration of the course.
"The class conducted at JSU focused on civilian business principles where profit is the bottom line. After three weeks of classroom instruction, students would spend a week at a civilian business to observe practices used by the company they visited," said Bryant Mathis, a training administrator in the Depot Training Office. "The depot's program is structured around how the Army Working Capital Fund works. We use subject matter experts from all over the depot and have established a shadowing portion to allow each student to follow a senior manager or supervisor for a day to witness the complexity of how the depot operates and how major decisions are made."
The first DLAMP class completely taught on Anniston Army Depot graduated Oct. 5, 2011. Since then, three additional groups of future leaders have taken the four-week course. The most recent class of 15 students graduated Feb. 7.
Martin Carter and Quincy Thomas graduated from the depot's second DLAMP class March 22, 2012. Both said getting a big-picture view of the installation's operations was an asset of the program.
"I learned how one move in our office can affect something that happens in the Directorate of Production," said Thomas, who works for the Anniston Contracting Office.
"I thought I knew just about everything that happened here," said Carter, who is an assistant fire chief with the Directorate of Emergency Services. "There are places I had never seen or been in until I took the DLAMP class."
Each of the four-week DLAMP sessions begins with an operations overview given by current depot leaders. Toward the end of the course, those leaders play another important role as the students shadow them for a day.
For many members of the class, one of their two days of shadowing is spent in their own directorate with a senior leader, gaining an overview of how their actions affect their organization as a whole and how those dealings may impact the rest of the depot.
Carter said everyone on the installation could benefit from the class -- from those with a few years of federal service to someone who has worked here for many years.
This was true for the most recent class of graduates, which held students with a wide range of experience. Some had only been on the installation two years, while others had spent more than 17 working in the same shop.
Yong Castillo, one of the members of the depot's fourth DLAMP class, said her understanding of the items she purchases through her job in contracting has been improved by the course.
"I had an understanding of office settings, but not the manufacturing side," said Castillo, adding that she is now able to grasp how parts ordered for production processes fit into the depot's mission.
Andel Jarvis of the Directorate of Risk Management said the camaraderie that comes from the course was one of its biggest benefits.
"I feel like I've built a better rapport with my coworkers throughout the installation. This helps us to accomplish our government-given tasks," said Jarvis.
The rewards of the course go beyond the students. Each organization represented in the class benefits as well.
"DLAMP instills the knowledge, character and skills needed for the participants to take the lead in making organizational changes and business process improvements that enable the depot to meet current and future mission requirements and achieve organizational excellence," said Jeff Simmons, the depot's director of production.
Simmons said these future leaders will play key roles in the Voluntary Protection Program as well as the depot's commitment to building quality products right the first time.
"Employees are our most important asset. These future leaders will play an integral role in making us competitive," said Simmons.
The depot conducts three DLAMP classes per year with approximately 15 students per class. The Army's Civilian Education System is incorporated into the course to ensure regulatory requirements.
Following completion of the ANAD DLAMP course, students have one year in which to complete the next phase of their leadership training, a two-week CES residency course in Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
Selection process is based upon service computation date with the final decision made by the depot commander. To be eligible, employees should be:
• GS-07 through GS-11
• WG-10 and above
• WL-08 and above
• All WS grades
The only course prerequisites are to have a Common Access Card with depot access and the CES Foundation Course, if applicable.
For more information about DLAMP, contact the training office at Ext. 4782.