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News | Dec. 13, 2016

Lima’s TEAMS app transforms data use

By Thomas Perry DCMA Public Affairs

LIMA, Ohio, Dec. 13, 2016 — Defense Contract Management Agency General Dynamics Land Systems quality assurance team members recently used technology and collaboration to embrace the Total Enterprise Asset Management System, or TEAMS, online application, which local leadership believes will revolutionize their ability to collect, manage and analyze combat vehicle data.

DCMA GDLS Commander Army Lt. Col. Travis Adkins, who commended his quality team’s integration efforts, said he believes this initiative will have an immediate impact. “TEAMS enables us to provide real-time, actionable acquisition insight across the entire M1 Abrams (Main Battle Tank) enterprise.”

“It allows Life Cycle Management Command program managers, U.S. Army and Joint Program Offices, and other stakeholders to have real-time visibility, manage and analyze data with interactive dashboards, and create customized user-driven reports, as it pertains to the manufacturing and acquisition of combat vehicles and combat support systems,” said Adkins, whose contract management office is located at Joint Systems Manufacturing Center-Lima, Ohio.

According to the TEAMS program office, the application is a robust enterprise application used for collecting, managing and analyzing combat vehicle data throughout the entire life cycle. The application is managed by TACOM Life Cycle Management Command and is hosted on a .mil domain with common access card authentication and can be accessed anywhere in the world via the internet, smartphone or an offline desktop.

Leadership credited David Hobbs, a quality assurance specialist, with incorporating DCMA’s specific module into TEAMS. Although local tools provided the necessary means of data collection and analysis, the output process was cumbersome, conveyance to concerned parties was untimely, and the tool could only be used by the database owner.

“What we have done here has the potential to spread across the entire combat vehicle portfolio for which DCMA provides quality oversight,” Hobbs said.

The DCMA module created in TEAMS now allows the quality assurance team to integrate all data from their legacy databases into one application. The module allows specialists to quickly identify systemic issues relating to government furnished material, monitor production processes across multiple contracts or programs, and document Abrams end item inspection deficiencies. The application also allows quality assurance specialists to input product acceptance information and provide a “born on date” for each vehicle as it pertains to the fleet.

“This has been over a year and half in the making. While some of the initial contributors have since moved on, particularly Bart Mills, they left the rest of the TEAMS integrated product team in a position that would guarantee a successful launch of the TEAMS application,” said Ken Warden, DCMA GDLS quality assurance director. “Much can be said regarding the benefits of this application. While the current DCMA input module is designed around the M1 Abrams tank, it can be easily modified for use by any TACOM managed program.”

During the development of the DCMA modules contained in the TEAMS application, Hobbs and quality assurance colleague Bill Lucas considered and mandated the minimum data requirements referenced in the current QA policy for Product Exam-324, Data Collection and Analysis-323, and Product Acceptance and Release-314, were included.

In addition to the various QA policy data requirements, Hobbs and Lucas recommended the inclusion of data fields that would support provisions outlined in Financial Improvement and Audit Readiness 8.17. The documentation portion of the system will further promote DCMA’s mission to move from detection to prevention and the application will provide real-time data as objective evidence on where the DCMA-GDLS quality assurance team may need to focus surveillance efforts.

“It seems to me that when we moved from quality control to quality assurance the obvious next step would be a move to quality engineering,” said Lucas. “After all, isn’t that what DCMA is?”

Editor’s Note: Defense Contract Management Agency General Dynamics Land Systems is located at Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio. The agency’s JSMC-L facility is unique as a government owned-contractor operated industrial plant which the Army has given DCMA garrison command responsibilities. These responsibilities are carried out by the DCMA-GDLS streamlined command of DCMA Detroit.