Army looks to maximize OIB efficiency, innovation through industry collaboration

By Megan GullyOctober 6, 2023

Corpus Christi Army Depot takes critical steps to modernize the Container Shop
Artisan welds hardware on containers (Photo Credit: Kathleen Pettaway-Clarke) VIEW ORIGINAL

CHICAGO – The Army is charting a course towards modernization of it’s Organic Industrial Base through a 15-year plan and looking to work alongside industry to maximize efficiency and innovation within existing resources.

At the Manufacturing x Digital (MxD) Member Summit, Stephanie Hoaglin, Army Materiel Command OIB Modernization Task Force deputy director, outlined the plan for modernizing the Army’s 23 depots, arsenals and ammunition plants and called on industry to help.

“We are working with industry to see best practices and how those can be incorporated into government operational standards and policies,” said Hoaglin. “These partnerships are important, they are valuable and we are seeking them actively.”

With the start of fiscal year 24, the OIB has officially kicked off its 15-year Modernization Implementation Plan, which will modernize facilities, processes and the workforce to bring the OIB into the 21st century, infuse industry best practices and refine human capital management structures to maximize the skills and capabilities of the workforce.

Some modernization projects had already started due to additional funding the Army received connected to ammunition production, including efforts to accelerate 155 mm production.

“Through the tools we have, we were able to explain our plan and process to Congress and the effects of that additional funding,” said Hoaglin referring to the data platform Vulcan, which provides the task force a clear picture of each of the more than 2,500 OIB modernization projects. “Sites used to set priorities separately but now we do it as an enterprise so we can see ourselves more clearly and can track what we are doing and what is next.”

The plan focuses on three strategic imperatives – streamlining in support of the Army’s signature modernization efforts, support to enduring systems and divestiture of legacy systems.

“What we know about modernization is that you will never be done. Yes this is a 15-year plan, but it will always look beyond 15-years because it’s a continuous process,” she said. “The Army can’t do this by ourselves. Imagine what types of things we can develop as partners … there are ways to go faster and do more with what we have.”