U.S. Marine communication-electronics school training process: discrete event simulation and lean options
Neu, Charles R.
Smith, William R.
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This paper uses discrete-event simulation modeling, inventory-reduction, and process improvement concepts to identify and analyze possibilities for improving the training continuum at the Marine Corps Communication-Electronics School (MCCES), specifically in terms of reducing adverse effects of lost-time spent in the Marines Awaiting Training (MAT) Platoon queue. Every possible improvement that the local commander could make without spending any capital was tested using the Process Analyzer Function (PAN) in Arena. The researchers also tested increasing the number of instructors up to the quantity authorized. Potential effects on the MCCES operating budget are offered, i.e., a cost-benefit analysis based on average salaries was conducted with recommendations for making the training system more efficient while examining potential changes to reduce costs. The premise of the study is that Marines Awaiting Training (MAT) are potential warfighters not gaining value-added training nor benefiting the Marine Corps when waiting in a queue to begin Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) training, i.e., adversely affecting Fleet Marine Forces operational readiness. The study coincides with current emphasis on reducing the Training, Transients, Patients, and Prisoners (T2P2) account. The researchers determined that changing from the present MCCES process of scheduling classes to an on-demand scheduling method, and, in some MOSs, changes to the minimum and maximum class sizes and the number of instructors, would result in a reduction in the average days spent in MAT and the average number of Marines in MAT. By utilizing all recommendations, the researchers identified a potential value savings in terms of salary of $1 1.6 million and a potential cost savings to the barracks and base support costs of $1 .9 million.
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