By Patricia McAllisterDecember 3, 2019
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- "Your training will be a force multiplier for our entire division logistics team, as DST affects all facets of current Army logistics," CW4 Tim Vickers told the Army Sustainment Command's Materiel Readiness Training Division mobile training team when it came to Fort Campbell, KY in November 18-22, 2019.
Vickers, the 101st Airborne Division's property accountability officer, requested the Decision Support Tool (DST) training to improve logistics readiness at the 101st and in all subordinate units, as well as training on the Army Readiness Common Operating Picture or ARCOP. Problem: the majority of the division's new logistics team members had little or no experience with the DST, attributable to the unique fact that all but one of their property accountability officers are new warrant officer ones (WO1s) with only recent exposure to DST processes and ARCOP.
Solution: Five onsite, intensive, hands-on training days with two classrooms of the DST and ARCOP. Now that training is finished at Fort Campbell, the MRTD MTT will move on to support the next division or unit who needs its support.
The Materiel Readiness Training Division name may have a new ring to it, but it has familiar roots.
Previously known as the Customer Assistance Division under the Logistics Support Activity (LOGSA), MRTD transitioned from LOGSA (now Logistics Data Analysis Center) in October 2018 to Army Sustainment Command (ASC). At that time, the name changed from CAD to MRTD. Along with the change came a broader teaching mandate.
"Previously, the primary tools we taught were LOGSA-centric, but now we have the latitude to teach and assist on any readiness-enabling tools or applications," said LaSonya P. Cooper, Chief of the Materiel Readiness Training Division. Cooper added that MRTD's goal is to bridge the gap between professional education and the unit.
To that end, MRTD is equipped with two branches that offer training and training development of logistics tools and programs in support of the Army. Clemmie M. McDaniel, Chief of the Training Development Branch, said MRTD offers classroom-based, instructor-led training, web-based training, video how-tos, job aides, and interactive multimedia instruction.
Training is given to Soldiers and DA civilians worldwide. MRTD instructors provide both onsite (hosted at Redstone Arsenal) and offsite (via MTT) classroom training. McDaniel added they also conduct virtual online training and offer training in product development and improvement, as well as sustainment.
In FY19, the MRTD provided "over the shoulder" formal training on Army logistic tools to more than 2,500 Soldiers across 24 different Army installations, including Europe, Korea, and Hawaii. It also provided web-based training to more than 850 Soldiers.
MRTD supports Active, U.S. Army Reserve, and Army National Guard units and its MTT offers training support around the globe. It also develops interactive and focused training for the DST, Decision Support Module (DST-DSM), Automated RESET Management Tool (ARMT), Theater Provided Equipment Planner (TPE-Planner), and ARCOP.
Since its transition to ASC, MRTD has been expanding the list of topics it can train to fully encompass the tools and capabilities located within the Army Enterprise Portal. These tools and capabilities help ensure the warfighter has the parts and supplies needed to be fully mission capable at all times. As Sheneka Smith, Project Planner, explained: "(We're) preparing Soldiers here, so they can protect us from what's out there."
The saying goes, "train as you fight." MRTD is focused on providing essential, realistic training to sustainers worldwide so they can support the fight and win on today's and tomorrow's battlefields.