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NEWS | Oct. 7, 2021

Employees earn accolades for innovation strategies

By Ms. Jacqueline Boucher

Employees earn accolades for innovation strategies | Article | The United States Army

Team Tobyhanna personnel leveraged Lean thinking to streamline processes and sustain current and future joint service workload, earning accolades for their innovation strategies.

Officials presented silver-level Tobyhanna Army Depot Lean Model Cell Recognition Awards to two Command, Control, Communications, Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) Directorate branches – Air Traffic Navigation Systems and Transponder – for improving quality, safety, schedule conformance and cost performance.

Program managers maintain the model cell promotes a healthy competition within the organization. In addition, it’s been said cost centers that earn the designation feel a sense of pride and disciplined accomplishment, and ownership of processes. When the term cell is used, it is referring to a cost center, a product line within a cost center or an overall process. To achieve a bronze, silver or gold-level lean model cell award the cost center must meet established criteria and undergo a formal evaluation by two supervisors and a process improvement specialist. Supervisors who manage cost centers or work areas can submit nominations to the Resource Management Directorate’s Process Improvement Division.

People apply lean tools and principles to create a model cell. The key is tying that work to the business goals of the organization.

“The whole team really has to be involved to succeed,” said Lead Process Improvement Specialist Chris Simko. “I’d like to commend everyone for taking the initiative to use the tools available, thereby improving their cost center.” Simko works in the Process Improvement Division.

Nomination forms outline how employees in each cost center used Lean and 6S (sort, set, shine, standardize, safety and sustain) methodologies to improve the repair cycle times and flow of all line repairable units for military systems, ensuring operational readiness for the Warfighters.

The Air Traffic Navigation Systems Branch chief wanted to make sure the employees who worked in the branch knew how much he appreciated their hard work.

“Branch personnel are continually making improvements,” Kaschak said. “I can rely on this team of experts to always do what needs to be done to meet customer requirements.”

Each organization has benefited from maintaining a neat and orderly workspace, using visual management to aid workload execution and improving work in process and flow to better track assets, among other things.

“Developing signs and organizing items was a challenge, but in the end it made the job easier,” said James Eiden, electronics mechanic. “Support from depot leadership and team work within the shop were key to our success.” Eiden works in the Air Traffic Navigation Systems Branch.

Changes in the Transponder Branch have helped improve working conditions, making personnel more productive, according to the branch chief.

“This team excels at process improvement,” Bob McLaughlin said. “They readily share ideas and collaborate to come up with workable solutions to meet mission requirements and support the Warfighter.”¬

Tobyhanna Army Depot is a recognized leader in providing world-class logistics support for C5ISR systems across the Department of Defense. Tobyhanna’s Corporate Philosophy, dedicated work force and electronics expertise ensure the depot is the Joint C5ISR provider of choice for all branches of the Armed Forces and industry partners.

Tobyhanna’s unparalleled capabilities include full-spectrum logistics support for sustainment, overhaul and repair, fabrication and manufacturing, engineering design and development, systems integration, post production software support, technology insertion, modification, foreign military sales and global field support to our joint Warfighters.

About 3,700 personnel are employed at Tobyhanna, which is located in the Pocono Mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania. Tobyhanna Army Depot is part of the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command. Headquartered at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, the command’s mission is to empower the Soldier with winning C5ISR capabilities.