REDSTONE ARSENAL, Alabama -- A Program Executive Office for Aviation Logistics Management Specialist received a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt for his leadership in increasing the Cargo Helicopters project management office's productivity for Maintenance Engineering Orders of the Army's worldwide Chinook helicopter fleet.

Laventrace Battle was awarded the Black Belt distinction Oct. 23 by the Office of the Under Secretary of the Army, Office of Business Transformation, Dr. Charles Brandon.

Lean Six Sigma is a business process improvement technique intended to reduce cycle time as well as improve the output quality of administrative, manufacturing and repair processes. The Lean Six Sigma technique enables the Army's ability to provide the people, training, resources, quality of life and infrastructure that is critical to the continued success of today's relevant and ready Army.

A Continuous Process Improvement team was chartered to correct inefficiencies in the Cargo Helicopters Integrated Project Support branch. The IPS manages technical activities for operational and materiel requirements and design specifications for logistics support of the Army's CH-47 fleet.
They define support requirements, develop and acquire required support and provide required operational support to enable the highest readiness levels for the Army.

Due to reduction in resources, limited availability of a single database administrator and budget funding, the IPS branch was experiencing an excessive backlog of MEO corrections and delays associated with Depot Maintenance Work Requirements.

The Cargo CPI team, made up of Battle, Samuel Collier, Adriene Fields, Ronnie Hawkins, John Johnson, Joe Ketron, Allison Meier, Robert Peter and Tom Willett, completed a Baseline Process Capability showing that 25% of Publication Change Requests were above the Upper Specification Guideline. A Risk Analysis, using Failure Mode Effect Analysis, suggested that Defect Escapes at Review poised the highest risk and an analysis of the Process Map suggested improvement opportunities at updating process Performance Metrics.

By addressing the above findings, in partnership with Corpus Christi Army Depot, the MEO Closure Rate productivity increased by 251% (from 299 closures to 1,048 closures annually) with a 74% reduction in cost for all CH-47 end items.