Accountability and outcomes are the measure of the Aviation and Missile Command’s commitment to Army readiness as it continues to align itself with its senior command’s top priorities.
During an Aug. 1 quarterly update with the Army Materiel Command’s Commander Gen. Gus Perna at AMCOM headquarters, AMCOM’s Commander Maj. Gen. Doug Gabram and senior leaders reviewed progress toward meeting the objectives of aviation and missile system sustainment. The update included reports on Unified Action; synchronizing contracting as well as research and development as they relate to sustainment; resourcing strategies; supply chain management, pre-positioned equipment; and the AMCOM reorganization.
“The changes we are making at AMCOM are allowing us to have positive input and outcome; holding us accountable to our mission; and improving sustainability and materiel readiness,” Gabram said. “We are operationalizing AMCOM, synchronizing and integrating our capabilities to meet Army priorities and combatant commander’s requirements.”
Perna directed AMC’s major subordinate commands and elements to make improvements that will lead to increased readiness for warfighters. He urged AMCOM’s senior leaders to “press forward” in ensuring sustainment of aviation and missile systems.
“It’s about the culture and the approach. It’s about building from the ground up. It’s about a disciplined approach for maintenance, accountability and supply chain management,” Perna said. “In your work, you need to produce to promise, reduce costs and hold yourselves accountable to quality.”
The quarterly update allowed Perna to assess the command’s capabilities to achieve the mission in support of the Army’s number one priority of readiness. Although AMCOM has made great strides toward its goals, room for improvement always exists, he said.
“I have confidence in this organization and the leadership of this organization. There is no question of the work ethic, that everyone knows their job and everyone is accountable,” Perna said. “But as leaders you have to get much better at forecasting. We are a strategic enterprise. If you spend more time focusing on where you need to be in five to 10 years, the current years will be a lot easier.”
During the update, Gabram reviewed AMCOM’s Army Aviation Rapid Deployment Equipment Program; reorganization efforts that refocus the AMCOM Logistics Center on sustainment materiel readiness, increase staff effectiveness and ensure readiness accountability; the Unified Action move that created a better working relationship for AMCOM with the Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center and the Army Contracting Command-Redstone to ensure visibility, prioritization and risk mitigation; and the AMCOM Campaign Plan that operationalizes output to meet Army requirements.
AMCOM provides overmatch capabilities to the Army and joint forces through sustainable technologies, programs and systems. AMCOM optimizes the supply chain to ensure the right part is available at the right time; optimizes depot performance to quickly meet the Army’s equipping requirements; reduces Soldier maintenance challenges while increasing readiness through condition based maintenance; supports Army training centers through its Fleet Management Expansion program; and provides field maintenance through its Logistics Readiness Center-Aviation.
Perna challenged AMCOM to identify and unburden the organization of missions that go beyond core competencies, and organizational issues that keep it from being efficient and effective.
“I fundamentally believe we have enough people to do the work we need to do,” Perna said. “We need to have the right people in the right places. We need training so those people know how to do their job. And we need to make sure the supervisor to employee ratio is correct.”
Gabram said AMCOM has the momentum to fulfill its commitment to readiness. Agreeing with Gabram’s report, Perna said effective leaders understand their organization’s workload and how to manage it efficiently.
“You’ve done excellent work. You’ve got the right approach,” Perna told AMCOM leadership. “But I am also suggesting to you that you might not be done. I need leaders to be involved in this. I want you to think about output and understand what workload management is.”
AMCOM’s work to bring Unified Action – the teaming of AMCOM with AMRDEC and ACC-Redstone – into reality received praise from the senior leader.
“I’m not going backward on that,” Perna said. “I’m pushing forward. I appreciate your leadership, teamwork, transparency and execution, and you all are setting examples for others to emulate.”
Unified Action facilitates teaming between sustainment and research and development, prioritizes research for both near term and future programs, addresses risky safety issues, and develops valuable teaming relationships for sustainment.
“It’s the power of coming together and holding us accountable together to timelines and execution. At the end, everybody is responsible for success,” Perna said. “As senior leaders, you are thinking bigger than yourselves and your organization. You are assessing risk and moving forward. You are doing what is right in execution, operationalizing AMCOM, increasing safety, reducing workload in the field and increasing confidence in this organization. It all adds up to increased readiness for our warfighters.”