“We can be anywhere in the world in 24 hours.” That is the motto of the 18th Airborne Corp. Whether on a mission of mercy, support. or to engage against hostile forces, the material needs to fulfill that promise are daunting. To make sure that that U.S. Forces Command (FORSCOM) can make good on that promise, Wood River Federal (WRF) brought to bear its expertise in technical planning and assistance, as well as staff augmentation.
Headquartered at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, FORSCOM consists of more than 750,000 active U.S. Army and U.S. Army Reserve, and Army National Guard soldiers. It includes the 82nd Airborne and Green Berets as part of its makeup.
Wood River Federal COMPASS Services include
Providing accurate projected unit requirements for movement of personnel and combat power by surface, sea, and air in support of (Contingency and Operations Plan) in support of Combatant Commanders.
Providing technical and planning assistance to COMPO 1, 2, 3 unit movement officers through email and telephone.
Providing support to establishment of Installation Transportation Offices for COMPO 2 State Joint Force HQ ISO of HQDA Army Power Projection Program Priority Initiatives.
To move vehicles, supplies, ammunition, or materiel to where it is needed logistics is critical. And so, the system for ensuring that the right items get to the right paces must be efficient and correct. Errors cost time and could delay the mission or put at risk those responsible for carrying it out.
Wood River Federal went right to work in the headquarters of the 18th Airborne. Using proper safety protocols, WRF personnel, in concert with U.S. Army personnel, must process all the paperwork related to a real-world or training mission FORSCOM authorizes.
“That doesn’t mean the people, but the unit’s equipment. Whether it went by sea, rail, or air transportation,” says Don Lipper, general manager of U-Tech, part of the WRF group of companies
On any given day, WRF and Army personnel had 700 to 900 tickets that came through their system. A “ticket” represents ALL the equipment tied to a unit mission. That ticket usually represents multiple documents related to the equipment move. If there are any issues with the ticket and its support documents, the ticket is stopped for closer inspection.
“WRF was given the authority, equal to the Army personnel, to shut down the ticket system if they found something wrong, and therefore the movement of equipment. Even in a real-world mission,” says Lipper. It’s all about safety and protocol, he said.
WRF’s past work in logistics at the Tyndall AFB after Hurricane Michael, also made them ideal candidates for handling the role at Fort Bragg.
Besides its expertise in logistics, and technical and planning assistance, Lipper said WRF’s communications made a difference at the 18th Airborne. He worked with base leadership to make it easier to bring in his people in emergency situations.
“We improved the flow of the process. It helped in a one situation when there was a forest fire, and in another when a hurricane that hit the Florida coast. We had parts moving towards those areas in three hours,” says Lipper. Two of WRF’s personnel were recognized with awards from the government and the military for that improvement in the process.
Such opportunities added to the success of the contract, and even allowed WRF to identify issues in the ticketing systems; issues that gone uncaught could have stopped the flow of equipment, created safety issues, or increased the cost of transporting necessary equipment and materiel.