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NEWS | June 27, 2022

NSS-SY Spotlight: IT Pillar

By Aime Lykins Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility

Whether on the deck plates or in an office building, the Naval Sustainment System-Shipyard Information Technology Pillar touches all members of the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility workforce. Key focus areas include network and computer upgrades, improving Maritime Systems Environment performance, realigning organizational structures to support digital technology, improving wireless access, automating time keeping, and prototyping digital crew boards.

"It is critical our employees have access to digital tools,” said Capt. Jip Mosman, commander, PSNS & IMF. “Being a world-class organization is about more than just completing availabilities on time. It’s about doing everything we can to support our people by providing the equipment and resources they need to stay safe and get their jobs done efficiently and effectively. That includes providing access to cutting edge, modern technology across the waterfront, which is the focus of the IT Pillar."

In support of digital tools on the waterfront, the IT Pillar engaged in the development of digital crew boards, building upon the Waterfront Pillar’s start-of-shift effort. Shop 26, Welders, became the home of the digital crew board pilot program, which allowed crew members to track jobs using a digital format rather than traditional dry-erase boards. Using the digital boards, a supervisor was able to quickly pull up lead shop daily priority lists from Execution Priorities and assign the jobs for assist work, allowing for visibility using the real-time job information.

“With the digital crew boards being on the intranet, this has showcased the power of having real-time information available to not only my crew, but to my upper management within Shop 26 and the upper management of the project,” said Dan Gile, Shop 26 supervisor.

The digital boards allowed supervisors to provide updates for start-of-shift briefings, reducing the need for in-person meetings. Gile noted that he could be on a computer anywhere within the shipyard and provide updates to his crew. With just a few mouse clicks, jobs can be populated and crew members could see upcoming work, assigned roles, and current job status.

“As a work lead, we can be sent to any project at any time to stand in as supervisor,” said Thomas Hengst, Shop 26 work lead. “It helps by giving you the ability to see all the work you will have on one page to quickly assess the area of responsibility, which previously took a couple days and many phone calls.”

Another key program through the IT Pillar is the PSNS & IMF Digital Transformation Strategy. The strategy is focused on digital enablement of the entire workforce and has set four priorities.

1. Provide computers for mechanics across the waterfront fit for different processes, to include tablets and NMCI laptops.

2. Provide computer accounts to 100% of the workforce.

3. Implement a digital time attestation process and electronic records management to keep computer accounts active through a simple, recurring 14-day process.

4. Work with shops and codes to implement digital processes. For example, installation checks, job history sheets, standard work access, and computer-based training.

The strategy was championed by Code 109, Information Technology and Cyber Security, Code 700BCI, Business and Continuous Improvement Office, and Code 900DX, Digital Transformation Office.

“When we started the 900DX strategy, there were 5,190 employees without ready access to computers,” said Kyle Denton, digital transformation manager, Code 900DX. “Since November 2020, that has been cut down to about 2,030 employees and we have deployed more than 380 tablets and dozens of NMCI computers at shared muster-site workstations for mechanics.”

Recently, Code 109 has provided 1,886 new laptops to replace aged, low-performance workstations with cutting-edge Generation 8 laptops, and are in the process of replacing 5,948 more within the next six months. The new workstations will reduce time spent waiting for stations to boot up and process information faster, making the workforce more efficient and productive.

Through the NSS-SY IT Pillar, digital transformation lessons are being continually learned and shared across the Naval Sea Systems Command enterprise. The PSNS & IMF IT Department and NSS-SY IT Pillar team are committed to getting the shipyard the right equipment and technology to create a successful environment.