MARTINSBURG, W.Va. --
The 167th Airlift Wing hosted a Production Assessment Team from the Air National Guard Jan. 24-27, to gauge current aircraft maintenance processes and identify ways to make improvements and increase aircraft availability rates.
PATs operate by-invitation, and the teams are formulated based on the requesting unit’s needs.
A team of 13 cross-functional experts visited the 167th to offer recommendations to improve availability of the unit’s eight C17 Globemaster aircraft.
“A robust Aircraft Availability is integral to combatting our nation’s biggest threat,” said Col. Michael Sherman, 167th Maintenance Group commander. “Therefore, I solicited help from a Production Assessment Team, comprised of subject matter experts from Maintenance and Supply career fields from across the ANG, to assess our maintenance production operation by identifying more effective processes and resource management practices that will positively impact AA.”
While some of the assessment was conducted virtually, the PAT also spent time on-site in discussions with 167th Airmen to share knowledge and ideas. Some aspects of aircraft availability are out of a unit’s control, so discussions focused on controllable factors related to non-mission capable maintenance time, according to Col. Brian McCullough, special assistant to the director A4 National Guard Bureau.
Eight ANG units have been assessed previously and data collected at those units before and after PAT assessments show continued improvement over time, McCullough explained.
“PATs are streamlining aircraft production efforts within ANG flying wings,” McCullough said. “Once these efficiencies are identified, adopted, and implemented, our ANG units are increasing the number of war ready aircraft to present to combatant commanders.”
The PAT provided several recommendations to enhance AA at the 167th, according to Sherman.
“Most recommendations allow us to look at our operation and processes from a different perspective, as well as provides our team with more efficient methods that have been successful at other units across the ANG,” Sherman said.
Follow-up visits are planned for six and 12 weeks after the assessment with quarterly check-ins after that, as needed.