Just a few years ago, a lack of epic proportions impacted individuals across the United States, leading to headlines on national newscasts.
From toilet paper to lithium-ion batteries, vehicles, furniture, and more, these supply chain issues were caused by a myriad of factors, including COVID-induced labor and raw material shortages, weather, and consumer inventory build-up.
Now imagine a shortage of bullets, aircraft parts, or other fighter equipment used to support military capabilities. Supply His chain is essential to Americans’ daily lives, but it’s even more important to national defense.
The Supply Chain Risk Management (SCRM) program team at Air Force Commodity Command pre-plans for any weak spots that could impede military capabilities. The team identifies and investigates vulnerabilities, reports them, and develops plans for mitigation.
“Senior leaders really understand that product support and maintenance directly impacts readiness,” said Maj. Gen. C. McCauley von Hoffman, AFMC Civil Engineering Logistics Director. Force protection and nuclear integration. “Unless our weapons systems are sound, our supplies and equipment are available and in place, we are going nowhere and recruiting nothing.”
SCRM networks understand the importance of ensuring a high degree of assurance that mission-critical components are available, highly reliable, and resistant to risk throughout their lifecycle.
AFMC Team Lead and Subject Matter Expert Mike Hoover said: “There are many ways in which supply chains can be disrupted and must be approached proactively.”
SCRM is not a new idea. Logisticians have preached the importance of vulnerability in their supply chain since the Middle Ages, but only recently has it become the focus of senior leadership across the Air Force.
Traditionally, the military has viewed its combat strength as its teeth and all the support behind it as its tail. Its tail is essential for maintaining combat power, military strength, and sustaining the nuclear business.
“Combat is not just an operational challenge, it’s a team challenge,” continued von Hoffmann. “It requires precise prepositioning of assets, generation of persistent missions, and resilience of supply he chain.”
“I love hearing other MAJCOM commanders speak in those terms, not just General Richardson,” she added.
The SCRM team provides advice, suggestions and acts as subject matter expert.
“There are multiple categories of risk,” said Senior Master Sargent. Julie Maddox, AFMC Supply Her Chain Risk Manager. “Vulnerability can occur naturally in the market or environment, or it can be a threat from an adversary,” she said.
Shipment and transportation delays due to extreme weather, labor shortages, raw material contamination, market dynamics, company closures and acquisitions are very common and have a significant impact on logistics.
Enemy threats are less likely to occur, but have greater impact on supply chains and ultimately combatants. Especially if the supplier is the sole source of supply.
There are many ways SCRM teams can work to mitigate supply chain vulnerabilities, but one of the most common is a proactive process called ‘illumination’. Illumination thoroughly reviews specific companies and parts. The team delves into the financial, ownership, and other business he dynamics from Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3 suppliers, looking for anomalies.
A recent example of successful Illumination involved changes that were contracted for an upgrade of the Weapon Systems program. The research found that certain software configured by the supplier is directly owned by a Russian state-owned company.
The SCRM team was able to communicate FOCI (Foreign Ownership Control or Influence) information to program managers, allowing them to choose solutions that pose less risk to key weapon systems.
And the work doesn’t stop there. The information is shared with other organizations to refine and improve our SCRM processes and functions, enabling better and more timely future decisions.
The SCRM team shares information not only within AFMC, but also with Air Force companies, the Department of Defense, and other organizations, including the FBI and Homeland Security. They facilitate collaboration and integration of fragmented initiatives.
“Now that we are here, the program will be fully empowered to manage the entire risk portfolio,” said Hoover. “It’s imperative that everyone recognizes vulnerabilities early in the process.”
The team publishes AFMC SCRM Pulse, a monthly email newsletter featuring the latest uncategorized supply chain risk management news impacting the supply chains of the U.S. Government, Department of Defense, and industrial base. . News Brief incorporates only open source news articles to educate SCRM practitioners and those who want to expand their knowledge on the subject.
People can subscribe to SCRM Pulse and inquire about future SCRM training opportunities using the SCRM workflow (HQAFMC.A410.SupplyChainRiskMgt@us.af.mil).
Sidebar: Aviators aren’t the only ones involved in the risk management process. Suppliers should also learn how to mitigate the threats they may encounter. Opportunities are now available for small businesses to learn about his SCRM and learn how to solve SCRM related challenges.
A Supply Chain Risk Management (SCRM) small business outreach event is scheduled for Thursday, September 1 at 1:00 PM ET at the Wright Brothers Research Institute in Dayton, Ohio. Registration information is available at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/400811707607.
|Posted on:||Aug 31, 2022 13:17|
|position:||Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, USA|
This work, Team reveals supply risks affecting defenseto Michele Donaldsonidentified by DVDSsubject to the restrictions set forth at https://www.dvidshub.net/about/copyright.