Department of the Army Lean Six Sigma
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On 11 July 2014, the Army announced the 2013 Lean Six Sigma Excellence Awards Program (LEAP) winners. Established by the Secretary of the Army and Chief of Staff of the Army, the LEAP Awards Program recognizes outstanding organizations and project teams who demonstrate excellence in implementing results-driven process improvement projects.

Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is a proven concept that American manufacturing, service, and healthcare industries have successfully pioneered and adopted to improve processes and reduce costs. LSS utilizes a data-driven approach and methodology for eliminating defects and variation reduction from product to service. This enables the Army to make more cost-effective use of taxpayer dollars while better serving Soldiers and their families.

We congratulate this year's award winners:

• Assistant Secretary of the Army (Manpower and Reserve Affairs)/Deputy Chief of Staff, G-1, Headquarters, Department of the Army who implemented a Continuous Process Improvement program that leverages inherent resources in organization and a structured project selection process to scope, prioritize, and assign projects. ASA (M&RA)/G1 completed 24 LSS projects that resulted in financial benefits of $42.4 million or approximately 3.3% of the total organization budget.

• Army Materiel Command who completed 717 projects during the year and realized $87.7 million in financial benefits during the year, approximately 4.6% of their command budget.

• Joint Munitions Command, AMC completed LSS projects providing $40.8 million in total financial benefits or 5.5% of the total budget.

• Assistant Secretary of the Army (Manpower and Reserve Affairs)/Deputy Chief of Staff, G-1, Headquarters, Department of the Army reduced process lead time by 30% in electronic Physical Evaluation Board processing. This project resulted in an FY13-20 financial benefit totaling $28.2 million.

• The Program Executive Office, Combat and Combat Service Support increased Soldier-maintainer effectiveness and efficiency while simultaneously reducing total logistics footprint and life-cycle costs for the Joint Combat Support Systems Multi-Generation Project. This project's net financial benefits include $253 million in cost avoidance and $139 million in cost savings.

• Tobyhanna Army Depot, CECOM, LCMC, AMC. The materiel induction Process Lead Time (PLT) of three day customer expectation was not being routinely met. As a result of the implemented improvements the average PLT was reduced from 2.7 days to 0.84 days. The elimination of the steps resulted in monthly savings of 229 man-hours. The cost avoidance was calculated for the period ranging from a portion of FY13 (Apr-Sep) through FY15 and totaled $0.4 million

• Irwin Army Community Hospital, Ft Riley, Kansas, MEDCOM improved the Integrated Disability Evaluation System (IDES). This system determines fit for duty determination and, if unfit, a VA disability rating. This effort reduced the time to process determinations, increased predictability for Soldiers, and improved medical readiness. Estimated financial benefits for this project total $226 million through FY17.

• The 21st Theater Sustainment Command developed a mechanism to improve the Basic Allowance for Subsistence recoupment process. . After identifying the root causes, the 266th FMSC [spell out] implemented a process in which meal- issuing activities submitted reports of meals issued. This project will recoup an estimated $2.5 million to the Army through FY18.

• The Aberdeen Test Center (ATC), ATEC examined a specific group of ATC test support personnel, the Heavy Mobile Equipment Operators (HMEOs), in an effort to identify more efficient use of those personnel and at a decreased cost to the organization. This project's financial benefits are characterized as Cost Avoidance and were validated at $10.8 million over the POM (FY12 - FY18).

• 21th Theater Sustainment Command, USAREUR. Over 300 Soldiers separate monthly from active duty in Germany, many with debts at the time of separation. In a number of cases, final payments were not made within the standard of three days of date of separation. This project improved the timeliness rate of final payment to 80%.

Related Links:

U.S. Army Materiel Command

Under Secretary of the Army

U.S. Army Office of Business Transformation

U.S. Army website