AMC etches its data superiority into command vision

By Samantha TylerDecember 15, 2023

AMC etches its data superiority into command vision
Maj. Gen. Walter Duzzny, Army Materiel Command’s chief of staff, speaks to data, analytics and information experts during the first Chief Data and Analytics Officer Summit in Huntsville, Ala., Dec. 6-7. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army photo by Samantha Tyler) VIEW ORIGINAL

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Army Materiel Command is cultivating a data-driven culture, expanding pockets of excellence across the sustainment enterprise through a new plan.

As part of AMC’s new data and analytics plan, the roles and responsibilities of chief data officers, chief analytics officers and those who hold both titles are being codified at echelon. The capabilities of these offices have proven critical in current operations.

“It’s about warfighting and our ability to leverage data to defeat our adversaries,” said Maj. Gen. Walter Duzzny, AMC chief of staff. “It has already helped us out in Europe. AMC is leading the way for the Army in this regard.”

Data and analytics experts joined chief information officers during the first Chief Data and Analytics Officer Summit to discuss plans, network and work through exercises. The summit took place on campus at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Dec. 6-7. This was the first time the enterprise has connected these critical communities.

“You cannot separate the CDAO and CIO,” said Daniel Bradford, AMC’s CIO. “We are on the right track. We are going where we need to be.”

During the summit, Dr. Christopher Hill, AMC’s CDAO, highlighted that the work they do is etched in AMC’s new mission, which describes the command as “the premier enterprise postured to support a global Joint Force with predictive and precision sustainment.”

In the analytics community, precision involves using data at the right place and at the right time. Also, the advanced analysis required to support commander decisions has to be predictable in order to be effective.

“These are not just vision words,” Hill said. “These are task words to the analytics community.”

AMC’s vision sets the direction of the command, while also setting the stage for the culture shift the experts within the command are actively implementing. While AMC’s Analysis Group has developed several tools within the AMC Predictive Analytics Suite to solve problems in support of U.S. and partner and allied operations, AMC’s data and analytics plan will lay the foundation for future support across the sustainment enterprise.

This plan hinges on the transformation of workforce culture, where data systems are being advanced and data quality is being improved, all while developing the right talent, tools and motivation to overcome challenges.

Some of the key tasks the data, analytics and information technology experts will achieve include refining and operationalizing AMC’s data and analytics education and training strategy, so the command has the right talent with the right resources. They also are working, through events like the summit, to establish communities of interest and working groups. According to AMC’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations Myles Miyamasu, the team is on the right track.

“We have talent all around our enterprise that can not only just solve problems, but also provide holistic solutions,” he said.

Another major task is to develop a data and analytics governance strategy. During an exercise at the summit, experts from AMC’s major subordinate commands posed three challenges largely concerned with governance and processes, with two issues specific to data and one focused on project prioritization and management. This exercise helped the team create action plans that will be worked on immediately.

The final task is something the experts have had a lot of experience with: supporting senior leader decision making. The summit provided them an opportunity to look at ways to better support leaders, including an artificial intelligence competition. During the competition, MSCs proposed six AI efforts addressing topics like data mapping, identifying errors, information summary and supply and program risk assessment. As a result of this exercise, the AMC team is working to execute all six concepts.

At echelon, the importance of executing this plan is understood.

“Keep in mind always that this is about warfighting,” Duzzny said. “Everything AMC is doing is focused on the warfighter and how we gain an advantage.”

“We have to put decision power in the hands of our commanders, because our adversaries are doing it,” Bradford said.