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A Lean Six Sigma project to improve watercraft maintenance:Pacific Reach is a biennial exercise with the Republic of Korea armed forces, the 7th Transportation Brigade (Expeditionary) (7 TB[X]), and other Army, joint, and interagency organizations. During Pacific Reach 2015, concerns were raised about the poor performance of the six modular warping tugs (MWTs), the key watercraft needed to support the modular causeway system (MCS), which includes the trident pier and roll-on, roll-off discharge facility (RRDF).

The 7th TB(X) collaborated with its strategic partners in the Pacific region, primarily Army Field Support Battalion-Northeast Asia (AFSBn-NEA), which manages Army Pre-positioned Stock 4 (APS-4), to analyze the problem and develop process improvements using Lean Six Sigma. Pacific Reach 2017 served as a pilot program capping the two-year project.

THE PROJECT

The goal of the Lean Six Sigma project was to initiate improvements to Army watercraft maintenance processes to address performance issues. In order to address the MWT concerns and develop solutions, the project team used black belt concepts and tools to define, measure, and analyze the process in order to cultivate solutions for implementation and control.

The first step of the project was to define the problem. The project team agreed that the MWTs were not ready to sustain prolonged operations. The team decided to address only the processes and procedures associated with readiness rates of MWTs located with APS-4.

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A Lean Six Sigma project to improve watercraft maintenance:Pacific Reach is a biennial exercise with the Republic of Korea armed forces, the 7th Transportation Brigade (Expeditionary) (7 TB[X]), and other Army, joint, and interagency organizations. During Pacific Reach 2015, concerns were raised about the poor performance of the six modular warping tugs (MWTs), the key watercraft needed to support the modular causeway system (MCS), which includes the trident pier and roll-on, roll-off discharge facility (RRDF).