Wednesday, October 17, 2012

ECBC Strategy Makes Customers Top Priority

With the completion of Fiscal Year 2012 (FY12) and the beginning of FY13, ECBC’s directors share an update on the Center’s three main strategic goals: Customers, People and Emerging Threats. In the first blog post, Director of Program Integration Suzanne Milchling discusses steps that have been taken and initiatives that are planned to answer our customers’ calls.

I’m Suzanne Milchling, the Director of Program Integration and champion for the customer goal here at the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC). In this blog post, I’d like give you some insight into the Center’s FY12 costumer goal achievements and into our upcoming plans for FY13.

As the champion for customer goal initiatives, my role is to help ensure that ECBC continues to provide excellent and consistent customer service to its clients in the chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosives (CBRNE) defense arena. In helping our customers tackle their current and future challenges, we strive to equip and empower the warfighter with innovative technologies that counter enduring and emerging chemical and biological (CB) threats.

We are committed to meeting our customers’ requirements and exceeding their expectations by efficiently delivering high-quality products and services. The customer goal team has worked directly with key stakeholders to assess our performance and identify ways can improve our efforts.

During FY12, members of ECBC’s leadership team met with some of our top external clients to survey their satisfaction for our products and services with regard to cost, schedule, performance and communication. Clients that were interviewed included the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Joint Science and Technology Office, the U.S. Army Chemical Materials Agency, the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization, the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center as well as the U.S. Army CBRN School.

Customers’ responses reflected that ECBC remains known as a national asset in solving complex CB problems ─ providing a unique combination of expert knowledge, capabilities and facilities. While overall feedback was positive, we realize that we need to stay on top of our game in many different ways throughout FY13 ─ especially in times where funding is scarce. For example, some costumers identified cost and schedule as areas of improvement.  Therefore, we focused on addressing the current fiscal climate and our survey results in the Center’s customer goal initiatives for FY13.

We will continue to provide exceptional products and services by emphasizing and promoting collaboration across the Center, the CBRNE community and other DoD organizations. In addition, we will develop approaches that help our customers understand the value of our products and services. We will also expand internal resources and tools to help our employees understand and address customer needs even better. In an effort to precisely fulfill customers’ requirements, we will continue to collect feedback from our internal and external stakeholders in regards to satisfaction levels and incorporate potential improvements into our processes.

On our path forward, I will work closely with the directors of Engineering and Research and Technology here at ECBC. Recognizing that our people, customers and technical competencies are essential to our organization’s success, we are implementing all three strategic goals – which are interconnected – across ECBC.

Please stay tuned for updates on the People and Emerging Threat goal on our ECBC blog. And, I encourage you to post a comment, if you’d like to share your thoughts or if you have a question!

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