Va. Army Guard trains on new Army logistics management system

A Virginia National Guard Soldier conducts training on Global Combat Support System - Army Aug. 23, 2016, at Fort Pickett, Virginia. (Photo by Cotton Puryear, Virginia National Guard Public Affairs)

A Virginia National Guard Soldier conducts training on Global Combat Support System – Army Aug. 23, 2016, at Fort Pickett, Virginia. (Photo by Cotton Puryear, Virginia National Guard Public Affairs)

FORT PICKETT, Va. — Virginia Army National Guard logisticians from across the commonwealth wrapped up weeks of training on the new Global Combat Support System – Army Sept. 1, 2016, and the new information management system promises better integration of supply, maintenance, property and tactical finance functions.

“GCSS-Army ties the Virginia Army Guard into the Department of Army’s integrated system for greater efficiencies and command oversight,” explained Col. Michael H. Swanson, deputy chief of staff for logistics for the Virginia Army National Guard. “It went smoothly overall and almost two years of preparation at the state level went towards ensuring successful implementation of GCSS-A.”

According to the program web site, GCSS-Army is the tactical unit / installation logistics and financial system that will track supplies, spare parts and organizational equipment as well as unit maintenance, total cost of ownership and other financial transactions related to logistics for all Army units. It impacts every supply room, motor pool, direct support repair shop, warehouse and property book office.

“This system puts everyone on a common platform, and it migrates us from the legacy systems that we have used since the 1960s and 1970s into one modern system that does everything,” said Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia. “Moving into this new system is a challenge no matter who you are because it takes tremendous time and energy to make the conversion and move all your data. Our logistics teams at every level have done the hard work necessary to make the implementation successful, and I commend them on their commitment and dedication to making this transition happen.”

GCSS-Army replaces existing systems like the Standard Army Retail Supply System, Standard Army Maintenance System Enhanced, Property Book Unit Supply Enhanced as well as a number of unique applications and the materiel management structure associated with these systems.

The system has a web-based capability to provide users access to information and exchange operational data related to tactical maintenance, materiel management, property accountability, tactical financials and other related sustainment functional areas, and it integrates tactical logistics information for leaders and decision-makers to provide a single maneuver sustainment picture to manage combat power as well as readiness in support of the Guard’s state mission.

Attendees for the training included property book officers, supply sergeants and clerks, master drivers, ground maintenance and logistics management officers and noncommissioned officers at the company, battalion, brigade level as well as unit commanders and executive officers. Users with access and permissions can login and perform their missions regardless of their position in the modular structure or location throughout the world.

The first week of training included a 16-hour battalion logistics manager course, an 8-hour master driver’s training course, a 4-hour commander’s course and 16-hour maintenance manager course. The following weeks featured 40-hour property book and unit supply course and 40-hour maintenance course, followed by validation courses in property book, supply and maintenance.