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NEWS | June 25, 2021

NSS-SY DEEP DIVE: The Operations Control Center

By Max Maxfield, PSNS & IMF Public Affairs Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Fa

One Naval Sustainment System – Shipyard sprint the USS Louisiana (SSN 724) Project Team at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility began this spring was called the Operations Control Center. The OCC creates a central hub where a cross-functional team of project managers, mechanics, supervisors, logisticians or anyone involved in a project can track performance, facilitate communication among organizations, provide timely resolution of delays and work stoppages, and make decisions when required to prioritize competing work.

One of the tools used by the OCC team to help keep everyone informed about the progress of the overall project and to help track potential non-stop execution of critical and controlling-path work is called the Crew Board.

The OCC team takes primary responsibility for updating the boards in real time. They include information like job descriptions, the current status of a job, the scheduled job start and finish dates, job locations, work stoppages, requirements to resolve work stoppages and who the resolution “owner” is.

According to Matt VanRavenhorst, Naval Sustainment System – Shipyard champion for Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility, fine tuning the use of crew boards doesn’t rise to the level of a full sprint. However, the team would like to figure out how much data should be included on the boards to ensure that they help the project team improve, while not bogging them down adding too many unneeded details.

“We saw enough results at all four shipyards, specifically with the crew boards, that we want to continue doing this,” said VanRavenhorst. “We want to standardize them so that we are all looking at the same thing to see how well they’re working. We want to know what all the pros and cons are.”

VanRavenhorst said NSS-SY sprints are indicating that it’s quicker and easier to get things done and get problems fixed when people at every level can track the status of various jobs. Leaders can especially benefit from crew boards by having a simple tool to help them plan ahead. He said leaders can use the board to ask themselves the right planning questions.