The U.S. Army maintains countless records of operational information and tasks associated with individual and unit readiness data. Being able to integrate this information in real-time and leverage historical analytics can align the operational requirements to the units that are ready for action, identifying qualified and available personnel that are best fit for each specific mission requirement.
Currently, 85% of that activity is conducted manually with telephone calls, spreadsheets, and files. This legacy system works but is far from efficient and open for human error. A CTMA demonstration of the Mission Analysis Readiness Resource (MARRS) system developed by MKGCS LLC and has propelled the U.S. Army into the 21st century.
MARRS is a secure cross-platform Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system-of-systems that captures and provides near real-time data for performance analysis and planning across organizations. MARRS presents readiness information from a strategic perspective with real-time operationally relevant information, and visually depicts the capability of the available force. This includes a unit to mission comparison of size, composition, and capabilities, using scenarios, and operational needs analyzed over time
“Our current systems were designed in the 80s and delivered in the 90s,” says Lori Mongold, Chief at Department of Army Strategic Operations Enterprise and Global Force Information Management (GFIM) Chief Management Officer. “When we call someone up from the Reserves, we are interrupting someone’s entire life. MARRS helps make the right decision for the total force.”
The GFIM Office has recently adopted the MARRS platform into its portfolio thanks to the results from the CTMA initiative. It will provide the tools necessary to dynamically develop, design, and document the Army’s force structure at rest and in motion. This program integrates previously siloed systems that managed family support, force management and planning, pay, personnel records, equipment condition and location, and other aspects that manage the employment and deployment of forces. In essence, MARRS will provide an operational readiness roadmap to getting a unit prepared for its mission. It will serve as a bridging strategy to the objective environment.
“The CTMA initiative allowed us to experiment using their ‘try-it-before-you-buy-it’ model to ensure that it worked for us. It has now been validated at the three-star level,” says Ron Schultz, the government Project Coordinator along with Dan Lehman, the MKGCS Project Manager. “This system is now being evaluated by the Air Force and will demonstrate the scalability of MARRS at the enterprise level.”
GFIM will evolve both long-term and immediate bridging solutions that integrate and automate Army operational business processes, using an interoperable, collaborative environment, to enable the seamless exchange of authoritative data across the operational community of practice to provide rapid, accurate, and auditable outcomes to support risk-informed senior leader decisions.
“The Army has made a strategic priority to advance from the industrial age to the technology age. Wars are non-kinetic and are being fought in the digital age. We need to use data in wartime and replace our legacy disparate systems that don’t communicate,” says Mongold. “Senior leaders understand that data is our new weapon. We need to increase the veracity of our data and the MARRS system gives us the level of data that we’ve never had before. The system is designed to ensure that the right people with the right skillsets are deployed and employed to the right place at the right time for the right mission.”
MARRS will not only save time, and effort, reduce errors, but will also save cost. MARRS automation, when adopted, can result in a significant reduction in man-hours required for data entry. An independent Lean Six Sigma black belt study from the Military One Source 2015 Demographics Report determined an effective usage of MARRS conservatively saves one man-hour of processing time permission through the reduction of redundant reporting and processing. When the processes automated by MARRS are combined with readily accessible information across all commands, the elimination of redundant systems like the Army Reserve Commands UTS (Unit Tracking System), conservatively enabled over $5 million per year in cost savings/avoidance across the enterprise.
“We need to be prepared to fight whenever and wherever the Army is needed. No more spreadsheets. MARRS coming to the GFIM is huge. Now we can talk the talk and walk the walk while being good stewards of taxpayer dollars,” says Mongold.
Army Reserves use MARRS to develop new medical units
An example of MARRS in use to benefit the country is found in new Army Reserve Medical units. Information about this new unit is highlighted in the May 8, 2020 issue of STAND-TO!
To respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Army Reserves has stood up more than 12 new 85-Soldier units comprised of medical professionals. Utilizing the benefits of the MARRS system, the Army now has the Urban Augmentation Medical Task Force (UAMTF) that provides an expeditionary, deployable, and scalable medical staff to assist in impacted communities. Communities benefitting from these new units are:
- New York City
The whole article can be read here https://www.army.mil/standto/archive_2020-05-08/?s_cid=standto