Maritime Logistics in a Changing Strategic Environment – Part 3

May 8, 2019 | By kgabel
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This issue includes the third excerpt from Rear Adm. Peter Stamatopoulos’ publication “Maritime Logistics in a Changing Strategic Environment: A Supply Officer’s Perspective.” Each excerpt offers valuable insight detailing how the Supply Corps plays a critical role in supporting the Navy. Part three takes a close look at Force Development. You may read the document in its entirety on the eSUPPO app.

Force Development

Background and Context
The “Strengthen Naval Power at and From the Sea” line of effort (LOE) in the Navy’s 2016 publication “A Design For Maintaining Maritime Superiority” describes a need to compete decisively from the ocean floors to outer space and all points in between, including in the information domain. The amplifying section of the LOE offers a list of broadly themed alignment actions which, if properly executed, should enable the achievement of the ultimate goal … that is, a powerful Navy, judiciously resourced and signally combat ready, preeminent among the world’s maritime forces. Achieving this measure of dominance at the most economical cost represents a herculean endeavor. It challenges our Navy at every level, both organizationally and individually. A cohesive, Service-wide approach, grounded firmly in the Navy’s operational design construct, is the prerequisite for success.
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Building, maintaining, training and employing a capable force requires a confluence of interactions across the Navy enterprise. The parties to these interactions include Joint and Service level staffs, Fleets, Type Commanders, squadrons, Systems Commands, support agencies and industry. Each of these entities constitutes an integral piece of what can be a bewildering functional puzzle. To aid in navigating these complex arrangements, the relevant organizations and their activities are best addressed under three overarching headings; Force Development (FORDEV), Force Generation (FORGEN) and Force Employment (FOREMP). These three concepts provide the nominal framework for the realization of the Navy’s design.
The Optimized Fleet Response Plan
A full appreciation of the FORDEV, FORGEN, and FOREMP triad is not possible without a basic understanding of the Optimized Fleet Response Plan (OFRP). The OFRP is designed to improve the Fleet’s readiness generation process. It aligns and synchronizes Navy-wide activity and resources to a stable cycle. The specific, stated mission of OF RP is to: “Optimize the readiness generation process to achieve and sustain maximum employability for all forces. Transition Fleet production of operational availability for deploying forces from a demand based to a supply based model, thereby making optimum use of resources and force structure.” The OFRP model, effectively implemented, serves as a framework to coordinate training, maintenance/modernization and deployment cycles to provide Fleet commanders a ready force in support of numbered fleets, Navy component commanders and GCCs. It consists of the five distinct phases listed below. Note that the FORDEV concept supports and is, in fact, foundational to each of them. The OFRP phases that correlate to Force Generation and Force Employment are annotated in parentheses as applicable:
  1. Maintenance Phase (FORGEN). The period in which major shipyard or depot level repairs, upgrades, force reconstitution and platform modification occurs. The goal of this phase is on time completion of maintenance, modernization and integration so that Navy forces are able to adhere to an aligned training schedule with phased durations, with follow on deployment as planned.
  2. Basic Phase (FORGEN). Its stated purpose is to provide a continuous and uninterrupted block of time to focus on the development of core required operational capabilities through the completion of basic-level training, inspections, certifications, assessments, and visits.
  3. Advanced Phase (FORGEN). The advanced phase exercises unit warfighting capabilities through academic, synthetic and live training in advanced tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP) in all required operations capabilities (ROCs) within a challenging environment.
  4. Integrated Phase (FORGEN). The goal of the integrated phase is to synthesize individual units and staffs into aggregated, coordinated CSG, ESG, ARG, SAG, or other combined-arms forces. It is also designed to build proficiency in naval and joint command and control structure operations.
  5. Sustainment Phase (FOREMP). During sustainment phase, Navy forces continue to conduct unit-level training to maintain readiness. Note: The OFRP process is discussed expansively in Annex B.
The three previously mentioned lines of effort – Force Development, Force Generation, Force Employment -- underpin the OFRP. Force Development is the vehicle for integrating and synchronizing systems and procedures to best prepare forces to enter the FORGEN segment of OFRP, which includes the maintenance, modernization, training and certification processes. The Force Employment phase starts upon group/unit certification, and includes the deployment and sustainment periods. The FORGEN and FOREMP lines of effort will be discussed in subsequent sections.
The Force Development (FORDEV) Concept
Force development is an ongoing process that is technically external to the OFRP, but its products and effects pervade and influence every aspect of it. The stated intent of FORDEV, to “integrate and synchronize activity across the Fleet to deliver forces ready to enter the Force Generation phase of the readiness cycle,” means that there will of necessity be a wide range of organizations and entities involved in this line of effort. The operative word within the statement of intent is “activity,” a term left deliberately broad. Any discussion of FORDEV must highlight the fact that weapon systems and capabilities are not one and the same. Weapon systems are undoubtedly integral to warfighter success and can provide a tactical advantage; however, the capability cannot be realized without the training, tactics, and procedures needed to employ it effectively. As such, FORDEV is not simply “up-gunned” weapons systems, improved ILS or a procurement wish list. Its activities encompass the integration of new systems and platforms, concepts of operation, force structure and manpower needs, emergent capabilities and training issues. This list is by no means all inclusive. The importance of the FORDEV initiative is underscored by past instances when systems and platforms were delivered to the Fleet prematurely. If a new ship or aircraft is received and deployed without the requisite parts availability, well-planned maintenance schedules, trained manpower and technical support to make it fully viable, the operational impact and price of recovery tend to be onerous. Time and experience have proven that it is much more cost effective and efficient to “do it right the first time,” or at least as close to “right” as possible. This is no simple proposition when those organizations with critical roles in the process cross many levels of the chain of command and span several claimancies. The challenge is further complicated by the need to synchronize new systems across platforms in order t o deliver a complete and fully ready capability to the Fleet. For example, a new C5I system o n an afloat unit offers no operational benefit if there are no complementary systems installed to utilize it.
The Requirement
Let’s look at a hypothetical scenario. A GCC begins the laborious endeavor of building an OPLAN in response to tasking from higher authority. The GCC, working in tandem with the Navy Component Commander, defines a need for a multi-purpose shallow draft combatant capable of mine countermeasures, surveillance, logistics support and other functions. The warfighter must have this capability in order to execute the tasking, but no current platform exists to meet the need. The GCC and Navy component place the capability the unit would deliver as a critically needed platform in the annual Integrated Priority Listing (IPL) submission to the Joint Staff, along wit h powerful justification for its development. Once the validated need is forwarded to the Joint Staff, it is reviewed by the Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC), which is comprised of Flag and General Officers from the Services, Combatant Commands and Joint Staff. After the platform has successfully earned the JROC’s initial approval, it enters a process of ongoing assessment with specific review milestones on its way to production. That process is termed the Joint Capabilities Integration Development System, commonly abbreviated as JCIDS. The JROC, under Joint Staff auspices, owns JCIDS. The sequence of documents and reviews would likely be something like this. The Initial Capabilities Document (ICD) is the most common starting point for a new JCIDS requirement. The ICD format is codified in the Joint Staff’s JC IDS Manual. Approved by the Capability/Resource Sponsor, the document template requires some important mandatory entries. In addition to a detailed description of the capability need, the document must also incorporate a summary CONOPS and recommendations on the Milestone Decision Authority … that is, the entity with the interest and expertise to review progress and assess readiness for advancement to the next phase of production. Joint DOTMLPF (Doctrine, Organization, Training, Materiel, Leadership and Education, Personnel, Facilities) Change Requests (DCRs) are the Sponsor’s means of documenting the non-material solutions required along with the new platform. T he various Joint Staff directorates serve as Functional Process Owners across the DOTMLPF spectrum, advising the Sponsor as needed and overseeing the recommendations generated as a result of the DCR. This documentation would address considerations that are peripheral but essential to the development of the hardware as identified in the ICD. “Non-material” within this framework might include the training, concept of employment, technical documentation and other non-hardware necessities – all of which are integral to successfully fielding a new platform or system. Since our hypothetical example essentially defines a need for a new platform, the next product in JCIDS is the Capability Development Document (CDD). This step represents the Sponsor’s refined capability requirement, encompassing Key Performance Parameters (KPPs), Key System Attributes (KSAs) and additional performance characteristics. This document incorporates much more detail than the ICD. It is described exhaustively in the JCIDS Manual. The Capability Production Document (CPD) is the Sponsor’s primary means of proposing the operational performance attributes at a system level necessary for the acquisition community (operating in parallel) to produce a single increment of a specific system. It presents performance attributes, including KPPs and KSAs, to guide the production and development of the current increment. Each increment must represent a safe, operationally effective and useful capability solution in the intended environment, commensurate with the investment. Not every new capability or platform follows the above documentation sequence with precision. There are variations within JCIDS depending on the nature of the project, whether the requirement is for a new innovation or a sweeping modernization to an existing capability, or if the overall cost is above or below a given threshold. It’s also important to bear in mind that as validated “capability requirements” work their way through the JCIDS hoops, acquisition and budgeting activities must occur simultaneously and in close coordination.
The DoD’s Defense Acquisition Executive (DAE) is the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. The DAE serves as the Milestone Decision Authority (MDA) for Major Defense Acquisition Programs, but may delegate this role to the head of a DoD component, who may in turn delegate it to a service component acquisition executive. In the case of the Navy this would be the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition (ASN (RD&A)). The extent of the delegation of MDA authority is usually dependent on the Acquisition Category (see DoDI 5000.02 for a detailed breakdown of the various categories) of the program of interest. In the case of our hypothetical example, this responsibility would likely fall to ASN (RD&A) because of its inherently nautical flavor. For our example, the ASN (RD&A) would assign the project to a Program Executive Officer who would then turn over full oversight responsibility to a Program Manager (PM). The PM would be charged with accomplishment of all development, production and sustainment objectives to meet the warfighter’s needs. He or she must also answer for costs, contract performance reporting and coordination of the rigorous schedule of “in progress” review milestones previously referenced. The PM would of necessity maintain close liaison with those Navy Systems Commands with key roles in developing technical, maintenance and parts support for the emerging platform. The most critical Navy responsibilities in new capability development will be discussed later in this section. [caption id="attachment_8941" align="aligncenter" width="520"]
Figure I. Interaction between Capability Requirements process and the Acquisition Process.
material Development Decision Diagram
Figure I. Interaction between Capability Requirements process and the Acquisition Process.
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Figure I. Interaction between Capability Requirements process and the Acquisition Process.   Because all acquisition programs respond to validated capability requirements, it is important that the leadership within the acquisition and budget communities be engaged as advisors to the validation authority as the project progresses. Consistent with this coordinative theme, the acquisition process runs in parallel with and is connected to JCIDS as illustrated in Figure I. The initial step in the DoD acquisition process is the Material Development Decision, which determines that a new product is, in fact, needed. This determination drives technical analysis, the result of which is the identification of the optimum material solution to satisfy the GCC’s requirement. This action occurs after review of the ICD as described previously. The result of the analysis is the Risk Reduction Decision (Milestone A), which is an investment determination to pursue specific product or design concepts. It commits the resources required to mature technology to begin the process and takes measures to reduce risks prior to programming the funding for development, production and fielding. The dedication of resources to product development for manufacturing and fielding is termed the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) phase by DoD. This phase immediately follows technology maturation (if required) and risk reduction analysis. The EMD commitment is divided into three related decisions: (1) requirements decision point (called the CDD Validation Decision); (2) a determination to release a solicitation for development to industry, called the Development Request for Proposals (RFP) Release Decision Point; and (3) a decision to award the contract(s), which represents Milestone B in the process. Formally, the development contract award at Milestone B is the critical decision point in an acquisition program because it commits resources to a specific product, budget profile, choice of suppliers, contract terms, schedule and the entire sequence of events leading to production and fielding. The consequences of this specific action will impact t he entire life span of the system under consideration.
110323-N-SF508-027 PACIFIC OCEAN (March 23, 2011) Sailors assigned to the Warlords of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light (HSL) 51 decontaminate an SH-60B Sea Hawk helicopter aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67) during a radiation survey and decontamination evolution. Shiloh is off the northeastern coast of Japan conducting humanitarian assistance operations as part of Operation Tomodachi. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Charles Oki/Released)
110323-N-SF508-027 PACIFIC OCEAN (March 23, 2011) Sailors assigned to the Warlords of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light (HSL) 51 decontaminate an SH-60B Sea Hawk helicopter aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67) during a radiation survey and decontamination evolution. Shiloh is off the northeastern coast of Japan conducting humanitarian assistance operations as part of Operation Tomodachi. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Charles Oki/Released)
Photo By: MC3 Charles Oki
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The decision to enter production (Milestone C) is primarily based on developmental testing and is usually informed by operational assessment. It authorizes the resources to launch production and deployment. This commitment to production is very expensive an d difficult to reverse. The process just described is generic with respect to decision points and milestones, but it is representative of how our shallow water vessel capability gap might be approached. It’s important to bear in mind that Milestone Decision Authorities have the latitude to tailor programs in the most efficient way possible, to incorporate the elimination of some phases or adjust milestones and decision points along the way. Figure I should be reviewed carefully to ensure a basic understanding of the connectivity between JCIDS and the acquisition process.
The acquisition process is not so rigid that it cannot be adjusted if the platform requirements so dictate. But one aspect is non-negotiable. And that is the requirement for funding. The DoD budgeting process is based on the annual budget preparation cycle, which is managed by the Director, Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation (DCAPE) and the Comptroller for the Deputy Secretary of Defense. The product of this effort is the Future Years Defense Program (FYDP), which projects five years of spending. While individual program decisions fall under the DAE or designated MDA, the budgeting decisions are made separately at the Service Chief or Secretariat level, with the advice of the DAE and others. Within all DoD components, MDAs will advise the budget authorities to ensure that acquisition programs are adequately funded and that program plans are consistent with funding levels. Funding responsibilities are generally assigned to the Services at a ratio that is commensurate with their expected employment of a given platform. In the case of a hypothetical multi-purpose shallow draft combatant, Navy could reasonably expect to receive 100% of the bill. The Navy’s budgeting process (see PPBE section in Annex A) is driven by competing priorities and ongoing milestones that roughly parallel the JCIDS sequence. In our hypothetical case, the OPNAV staff directorate N96 would be assigned Resource Sponsorship. The Resource Sponsor would be responsible for the programming of funding to support the development, production and life cycle support of our fictitious capability gap.
Research and Development Logistics Responsibilities
The end product of Force Development is derived from a broad cross section of entities and processes. A visual representation is provided in Figure J. [caption id="attachment_8943" align="aligncenter" width="520"]
Figure J. Visual representation of the inputs to the FORDEV concept.
Force Devp
Figure J. Visual representation of the inputs to the FORDEV concept.
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Figure J. Visual representation of the inputs to the FORDEV concept.   Many of the key development responsibilities depicted above were alluded to in the previous discussion of the requirements development, acquisition and budgeting processes. A brief summary is offered here despite a bit of overlap with the earlier sections.
Secretary of the Navy
The Secretary of the Navy bears overall responsibility for the Service’s acquisition functions. The Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, however, may be delegated to perform those research and development functions related to military requirements and operational test and evaluation. The Secretary of Defense mandates that each department appoint a sub-entity to serve as the service Acquisition Executive, with full time responsibility for all acquisition functions. As previously inferred, the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition (ASN RD&A) fulfills that role for the Secretary.
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development & Acquisition)
The ASN (RD&A) wields programmatic oversight and milestone and program decision authority for some acquisition categories. The ASN (RD&A) also coordinates the “analysis of alternatives” which occurs after the review of the Initial Capabilities Document and prior to development and implementation of a new platform or system.
Chief of Naval Operations
The Chief of Naval Operations provides direct support to the ASN (RD&A) throughout the process, assisting with coordination of the “analysis of alternatives” and advising the Secretary on the allocation of resources. The CNO also validates and prioritizes warfighting capability needs for funding consideration and manages the ICD/CDD/CPD Joint Capabilities and Integration Development System documentation process, closely coordinating with the Joint Requirements Oversight Council along the way. The CNO has additional, wide-ranging responsibilities outside the actual acquisition process. Not the least of these is maintaining the integrity of the originally validated capability proffered by the Fleet. The CNO, in harness with the ASN (RD&A), the Fleet and the Program Manager, must consistently strive to maintain the link between acquisition actions and the warfighting tasks they are meant to support. It is incumbent on the Resource Sponsor to ensure that the original capability gap is not obscured as resources are applied and the requirement is translated into reality. The CNO directorate assigned resource sponsorship is further tasked to review the Integrated Logistics Support (ILS) planning, and program and monitor, with the support of OPNAV N4, funding execution for system acquisition and life cycle support.
Hardware Systems Commands
170218-N-KB401-147 MEDITERRANEAN SEA (Feb. 18, 2017) The fast combat support ship USNS Supply (T-AOE 6) resupplies the Danish navy frigate HDMS Peter Willemoes (F 362) and the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) during a replenishment-at-sea in the Mediterranean Sea. The George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group is conducting naval operations in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations in support of U.S. national security interests. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Michael B. Zingaro/Released)
170218-N-KB401-147 MEDITERRANEAN SEA (Feb. 18, 2017) The fast combat support ship USNS Supply (T-AOE 6) resupplies the Danish navy frigate HDMS Peter Willemoes (F 362) and the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) during a replenishment-at-sea in the Mediterranean Sea. The George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group is conducting naval operations in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations in support of U.S. national security interests. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Michael B. Zingaro/Released)
Photo By: MC3 Michael B. Zingaro
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The Commanders of the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR), Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) and Space & Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) exercise the authority of the acquisition executive to directly supervise program management and to maintain conscientious oversight of cost, schedule and performance, reporting directly to ASN (RD&A) for all matters pertaining to research, development and acquisition. These Systems Commanders (SYSCOMS) are further responsible to Fleet Commanders for in-service support; providing support services to Program Executive Offices (PEOs) and Direct Report Program Managers (DRPMs) – both discussed later in this section – without duplicating their management functions; and serving as the technical authority and operational safety and assurance certification authorities for their respective areas of responsibility. The importance of the SYSCOM role in life cycle and technical support cannot be overstated. The catalog of their duties is exhaustive (see SECNAVINST 5400.15C for a comprehensive discussion), but the below list highlights a few of the most notable.
  1. Oversee the core processes required to support the acquisition, in-service support and disposal of weapon and IT systems. Core processes include: a. Systems engineering b. Test and evaluation c. Integrated Logistics Support d. Configuration Management e. Demilitarization and Disposal f. Comptroller, legal, contracting and administrative support services
  2. Operate and sustain the infrastructure needed to support acquisition, fielding and in-service support of weapons, IT systems and commodities
  3. Incorporate advanced technology and operating “lessons learned” into design, maintenance, modernization and acquisition specifications for weapons and systems
  4. Exercise program oversight on programs not assigned to a PEO or DRPM and deliver reports to ASN (RD&A)
  5. Support PEOs and DRPMs as needed and appropriate
  6. Serve as Head of Contracting Activity for both assigned and PEO/DRPM programs
  7. Serve as milestone and program decision authority for assigned ACAT III, IV and other programs as delegated
Commander, Naval Supply Systems Command
The Commander, Naval Supply Systems Command (COMNAVSUPSYSCOM), acts on behalf of ASN (RD&A) to serve as the Logistics Support Authority (LSA) in support of the Fleet and other SYSCOMs, PEOs, DRPMs and Program Managers (PMs) and their acquisition programs throughout their respective life cycles. COMNAVSUPSYSCOM also exercises ASN (RD&A)’s authority as Head of the Contracting Activity (HCA) for work under its cognizance, wields programmatic oversight and delivers reports relative to the execution of the LSA role. Program Executive Officers and Direct Report Program Managers PEOs and DRPMs act for and exercise the programmatic authority of the acquisition executive to directly supervise the management of assigned programs. They are tasked to maintain oversight of cost, schedule and performance, and report directly on all acquisition related program matters directly to the ASN (RD&A). PEOs and DRPMs (representing special programs reporting directly to ASN RD&A) must work closely with both the hardware SYSCOM and COMNAVSUPSYSCOM to ensure optimum technical and logistics support for their programs.
Program Managers
Program Managers report to the PEO. They are vested with the authority, accountability, and resources necessary to manage all aspects of their assigned acquisition programs from concept development to demilitarization and disposal. PMs must also formulate and defend program plans and budgets for development, test and evaluation, Fleet introduction and in-service support. They are further tasked to incorporate availability, reliability and supportability requirements into initial designs, acquisition strategies and procurement documentation. Additionally, PMs must implement technical requirements changes across systems and assess their impacts on specifications and configuration management.
This section has offered an overview of the institutionalized processes by which new platforms, systems and modernization initiatives are delivered to the Fleet. The hardware comes with an entire suite of additional considerations, some of which were addressed in the previously discussed DOTMLPF Change Request (DCR) action in the early phases of the JCIDS process. The list includes training, maintenance, parts support and more. One of the most important of these peripheral factors is the Concept of Operations (CONOPS) development, which requires an elevated level of research and coordination. Through Fleet and Table Top exercises, studies and assessments, the foundational data for CONOPS development is generated. The information and understanding gleaned from those efforts is aggregated and exhaustively reviewed. The Fleets, TYCOMs and Warfare Centers then collaborate to codify the tactics, training, procedures and techniques to support and employ the capability as it is integrated into the Fleet. The resultant CONOPS and other elements must be incorporated adeptly if the newly programmed platform is to reach full operating capability as efficiently as possible. The convergence point for them is at the Fleet … with the N8/N9 Directorate. The N8/N9 Directorate (and its analytical arm, the FORDEV OPT) and the external organizations it must coordinate with reflect the broad scope of its responsibilities, not only with respect to new platform integration, but with modernization of existing systems, expansion of current capabilities and new innovations in warfighting concepts of operation. Typical membership of the OPT includes: USFF Directorates and the integration functions they serve:
  • N8/9 – Chair and overall coordination
  • N1 – Personnel and Manpower Issues
  • N2/39 – Intelligence
  • N3 – Global Force Management and Fleet Operations
  • N41 – Logistics and Spare Parts Support
  • N43 – Fleet Maintenance
  • N46 – Shore-based infrastructure and support
  • N6 – Automated Systems and Cyber Security
  • N7 – Readiness and Training
  • Type Commanders – Man, train and equip responsibilities
  • Naval Warfare Development Command (NWDC)– Codifies new concepts and processes into doctrine per the above discussion
  • Strike Group and Amphibious Readiness Group Representatives–End users of the products under review
The FORDEV OPT must also liaison with all those commands engaged in the Requirements, Acquisition and Budgeting processes in order to guarantee successful coordination of new capabilities and concepts. The Fleet represents only one entity in the greater process, but through its N8/N9 and the FORDEV OPT it plays the pivotal role with respect to their integration for warfighter employment.
Force Development from the Fleet Perspective
The FORDEV process has been loosely institutionalized under the auspices of the U. S. Fleet Forces Command’s Force Deployment Operational Planning Team (FORDEV OPT), which is chaired by the N8/N9 directorate. The OPT’s working objective statement follows: “The FORDEV OPT will leverage and integrate Fleet, OPNAV and Acquisition community activities to establish a repeatable process to ensure readiness of operational forces (e.g., CSGs, ARGs, MSC, Forward Deployed Forces, Expeditionary Forces, SSNs and MPRA) to enter the force generation phase of the readiness cycle as approved in Master OFRP Production Plans.” These activities include:
  1. Ensuring the wholeness of new material and non-material capabilities being delivered to Navy operational forces
  2. Coordinating with OPNAV and program offices to align the delivery and installation schedules of new platforms and systems (deliberate and urgent) to operational forces to ensure full incorporation into the Force generation phase
  3. Ensuring shore training and maintenance infrastructure are able to support force generation requirements
  4. Ensuring Fleet manpower, maintenance, training, environmental and other policy supports the force generation process
  5. Ensuring Fleet experimentation and doctrine development are responsive to feedback and aligned to the FORDEV and FORGEN phases of the readiness cycle to quickly support operational forces in FOREMP
A cursory review of the scope of the FORDEV enterprise should validate the indispensability of the OPT. Even with the dedicated leadership of the USFF N8/9, the coordination of so many functions and the need for such a wide range of organizational inputs is a daunting enterprise. New capabilities are identified through ongoing review and analysis by the Services, Combatant Commanders (both geographic and functional) and other DoD components. The idea is to address gaps and risks that might preclude or obstruct their individual and collective ability to fulfill the mandates of our national military strategy.
The processes of requirements definition, acquisition and budgeting may appear to be complex, cumbersome, labor intensive and unwieldy. That’s because they are. But as mentioned at the onset of this section, it’s of paramount importance to deliver the right capabilities at the best possible cost. In his 1996 book “The Unsinkable Fleet: The Politics of U. S. Navy Expansion in World War II,” historian Joel R. Davidson took note of the indiscriminate lack of serious study devoted to new ship construction combined with what was, in effect, a blank check to the Department of the Navy during that great period of national emergency. “The inescapable conclusion,” he observed, “is that Navy expansion goals had become completely divorced from strategic planning and were influenced by political possibilities more than any thorough reassessment of the Fleet’s long term requirements.” This model, or anything resembling it, is unsupportable in today’s funding environment. Our current approach, with the three interdependent elements of requirements determination, acquisition and budgeting, has evolved to its present state after 60+ years of refinement and lessons learned. It may not be streamlined, but it is effective. With the pivotal dual concerns of operational readiness and sensitivity to the sacrifices of the taxpayer, we as a Service are not positioned to cut corners. Neither should we seek shortcuts with respect to integrating new and modernized platforms into the Fleet. The most sophisticated systems in the world are of little use if our combatant units lack the manpower or trained expertise to operate them. Nascent technologies and capabilities require new methodologies that must be codified, and parts support packages that judiciously weigh cost and expected failure rates. So many organizations, individuals and processes must coalesce to deliver the right solution to the warfighter and they must preserve that level of synergy throughout the life cycle of the system to ensure its uninterrupted viability. The coordinated delivery of these elements constitutes the Force Development concept. The FORDEV processes and products optimize the capability of the Fleet. They feed the Force Gene ration and Force Employment phases and ultimately make the OFRP a viable and sustainable reality.
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As illustrated in “A Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority,” we have entered an age of new technological threats, resurgent geopolitical rivals and escalating geographic obligations. Augment those concerns with our expansion into new and non-traditional warfighting domains, and the need for in-depth understanding of the FORDEV processes becomes manifest. We have every reason to expect that a new strategic environment will impact our national military strategy, our planning guidance and the scope and complexity of our acquisition and modernization efforts. The repercussions will certainly be felt in the composition and capabilities of our deploying Carrier Strike Groups and Amphibious Ready Groups, with storeroom level implications for every individual combat unit. As professionals, we can better manage our systems and parts if we understand the processes that delivered them to us.
Notes for the Logistician
There are roles for the logistician in every step discussed in this section, most of them critical to the development and delivery of new or improved warfighting capability to the combatant unit. Logisticians would have been engaged in the GCC’s planning process that identified the need for the shallow water vessel and they could most certainly expect to be part of the team that received and validated the IPCL input on the Joint Staff. Their expertise in acquisition, budgeting and life cycle logistics is prominent and invaluable, as are their contracting functions at the Systems Command level. The construction and maintenance of parts support allowances is dependent almost wholly on the Naval Supply Systems Command, and Fleet logisticians are indispensable participants in the integration functions that were discussed under the FORDEV OPT umbrella. The afloat supply officer is impacted to some extent by every process described in this section. A new capability or system equates to expanded storeroom needs. A Resource Sponsor action may impact the unit level operating budget. A Program Manager decision might well influence repair parts range and depth. There are as many possible examples as there are activities and actions associated with Force Development. Spring 2019