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Army Reduces Tactical Supply System Footprint

Centralizing all of the Army’s Corps/Theater Automated Data Processing Service Center operations at one site represents the first step toward consolidating tactical supply systems for the modular Army.

The Army’s transition to a brigade-centric structure requires a number of changes to its logistics support concepts, organizations, and processes. One of the most significant changes removed the administration, operations, and support of the Corps/Theater Automated Data Processing Service Center (CTASC) from corps and theater materiel management centers and placed them at the theater support commands or Army support commands (ASCs). Each CTASC provides end-user support of the Standard Army Retail Supply System (SARSS), which is the Army’s tactical supply system.

In order to meet its schedule for transforming into a modular force, the Army needed a centralized CTASC administration and operations center. Such a centralized center was needed to meet the requirements of a brigade-based force, support the Army’s 500-Day Plan for information technology, and simplify the migration toward a centralized environment for the Single Army Logistics Enterprise (SALE). [The Army Chief Information Office/G–6 issued the Army 500-Day Plan in October 2005 to provide a roadmap for achieving a joint, network-centric information enterprise in support of the warfighter.]

Those of us working on the project realized that centralizing CTASC operations at a single site would provide significant enhancements by reducing the logistics footprint, standardizing network and processing operations, reducing total network traffic, simplifying unit transfers for deployments, and greatly simplifying post-deployment software support. Most important, however, centralizing CTASC operations would substantially reduce the number of personnel needed for CTASC administration and operations.

Developing a Plan

To accomplish this monumental task, Lieutenant General Ann E. Dunwoody, the Deputy Chief of Staff, G–4, Department of the Army, directed her staff to work with the Army Combined Arms Support Command (CASCOM), the Army Materiel Command (AMC), the Program Executive Office for Enterprise Information Systems (PEO EIS), and the G–4s of major subordinate commands to plan for and execute the centralization of all Army CTASCs at a single site.

In January 2006, CASCOM hosted an integrated concept team (ICT), which mapped the way ahead for CTASC operations under modularity. The ICT was composed of CTASC and SARSS subject-matter experts from the major commands, CASCOM, and the Department of the Army G–4. Over a 6-week period, the team developed a plan. On 28 March 2006, based on the plan’s recommendations, Lieutenant General Dunwoody signed a memorandum directing the transfer of all Army CTASCs to a single, collocated site, with a separate geographic location for a contingency of operations (COOP) site.

The AMC Logistics Support Activity (LOGSA) at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, was selected as the central CTASC production site and the Functional Processing Center at the Software Development Center at Fort Lee, Virginia, ultimately was selected as the site that would perform COOP operations. The AMC and LOGSA commanders announced that they were prepared to accept the CTASC mission from losing commands in accordance with a timeline that had been synchronized to the Army’s transformation schedule by the ICT members.

CASCOM immediately went to work and developed the table of distribution and allowances out-of-cycle adjustments needed to conduct CTASC operations at LOGSA and the COOP site and forwarded them to the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G–3, Department of the Army, Force Management Directorate, where they were approved and implemented. Chief Warrant Officer (W–5) Wade Lovorn, who was running CTASC operations for III Corps, was selected as the first Officer in Charge and Chief of Operations of the new production CTASC at LOGSA.

Centralizing CTASC Operations

The Army is well on its way toward achieving a centralized CTASC. On 7 April 2006, the U.S. Army Reserve Command (USARC) moved its CTASC operation from Fort Gillem, Georgia, to the LOGSA facility, marking the beginning of centralized CTASC operations. In April, the 2d Corps Materiel Management Center at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, moved its CTASC operations to LOGSA. It was followed by the 321st Theater Materiel Management Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; the Installation Management Agency at Fort Monroe, Virginia; the 4th Corps Materiel Management Center at Fort Hood, Texas; U.S. Army Europe in Germany; Eighth U.S. Army in Korea; and U.S. Army Pacific in Hawaii. The move of the National Guard CTASC from Little Rock, Arkansas, to LOGSA in January 2007 signaled the end of the collocation effort.

The focus for the remainder of fiscal year 2007 is on CTASC server consolidation. Much like the ICT that met to develop the plan for CTASC collocation, a new team will stand up to develop the plan for CTASC server consolidation. Preliminary studies indicate that a reduction from the current 10 servers to 3 or 4 is possible and will result in more streamlined operations and a further reduction in the support requirement with no degradation in service and support to the tactical logistics community.

Work standing up the COOP site at the Software Development Center at Fort Lee continues. It was expected to be fully operational not later than February 2007, with the first COOP exercise planned for March.
ALOG

Thomas H. Ament, Jr., is a career logistics management specialist serving since March 2003 on the staff of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G–4, Department of the Army. He previously was assigned to the U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR) G–4 staff, where he was responsible for developing the USAREUR Information Warehouse. He currently is enrolled in acquisition management courses with the Defense Acquisition University.