Original Date: 05/01/2000
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Product Operations Depot
The Product Operations Depot is a service organization within Northrop Grumman Defensive Systems Division (DSD) that repairs and retrofits line replaceable units (e.g., control oscillators, radio frequency [RF] amplifiers) and shop replaceable units (e.g., modulators, power supplies) for various customers. The Depot is comprised of four major functions: Administration, Production Control, Test and Repair, and Material Control. In the past, the Depot had no access to Test Result Notices (TRNs) which, among other things, provide failure thresholds and integrated corrective actions (both process and supplier). Consequently, the ALQ-135 program experienced a high rate of correlation failures resulting in decreased system reliability, poor customer satisfaction, and high product quality deficiency report rates. To resolve these issues, the Depot implemented Best Value Manufacturing (BVM) practices where appropriate to specific customer requirements for depot-level support.
The Depot is also working to reduce and streamline the contract data requirements list (CDRL) deliveries for its customers by providing contract data in an electronic format. For example, the ALQ-135 Depot Support Contract calls for maintenance data collection records (AFTO 349 Form) to be submitted for each depot-level repair. A project is underway to collect the required maintenance data (e.g., TRNs, daily assignment ticket system labor, depot material, logistics) electronically from the operations and depot data systems to meet CDRL requirements. This effort will greatly reduce the time to produce CDRL data and provide customers with accurate and timely information. The Depot is producing approximately 5,000 to 6,000 TRNs each year. The data is collected by Sustaining Engineering and Depot personnel to assist in trend and failure analyses, the troubleshooting and repair of customer systems, and the correlation of production and field failures.
In July 1995, the Depot was designated as Zone 10 for the Excellent Performance Indicators (EPI) program. Its mission is to establish Statistical Process Control (SPC) metrics to measure and evaluate Depot performance; use performance measures to reduce costs and product turnaround times while improving product quality and customer satisfaction; and provide guidance, leadership, and communication to all zone members for the implementation of EPI.
Zone 10 has consistently shown marked improvements and won quarterly and annual awards for its efforts. As a result, the Product Operations Depot has reduced its rates of return, increased customer satisfaction, and provided high system availability. All new program bids now include the use cost of supplier-developed test systems to reduce correlation issues. These efforts assist Northrop Grumman DSD in producing quality products for its customers.
For more information see the
Point of Contact for this survey.