Prospective solutions to meeting the capability needs described in Chapter 2 would have various potentials to contribute to the goal of achieving tactical small unit (TSU) overmatch. However, no principled means exists to evaluate all solution candidates and implement the ones that would contribute the most. It would be far too tedious a process to evaluate all conceivable solutions against the Doctrine, Organization, Training, Materiel, Leadership and Education, Personnel and Facilities (DOTMLPF) domains and even less practical to implement all of them via the materiel acquisition process.
This chapter discusses four essential actions needed to set the conditions for the Army to exploit the potential available for TSU overmatch. The following conclusions form the basis for these actions:
• In most areas of potential improvement in the human dimension sphere of TSU performance, the Army’s modest funding of human performance research and development (R&D) in relatively narrowly delimited domains has severely limited TSU improvement options. The Army will need to significantly increase investments in human dimension research, development, and engineering to provide a more robust menu of decision options. This required level of emphasis is discussed in the first section of the chapter.
• The Army should have an analytically sound approach for evaluating combinations of potential capability options holistically, rather than evaluating options independent of each other (as stovepiped “eaches”) without considering the TSU and Soldier as functional wholes. The second section of this chapter argues that the established disciplines of systems engineering and system-of-systems engineering are applicable for such evaluations—provided the enriched and comprehensive concept of the human dimension (as discussed in the first section) is fully incorporated into the systems engineering methodology.
• To support fully the anticipated benefits of both a richer palette of potential solutions and an analytical systems engineering approach, the Army must employ a rigorous methodology for developing a comprehensive set of measures of effectiveness (MOEs) and measures of performance (MOPs) that better represent the mission performance of a TSU, including the capabilities and limitations of all relevant components—the individual Soldier, materiel, human dimension, doctrine, and organization—and their interactions, in objective terms. The third section of the chapter discusses this need for more objective measures that are
• The committee doubts that solutions to achieve overmatch capabilities can be successfully implemented with the Army’s typical acquisition approaches because the principled groundwork necessary to analyze the TSU system has not been laid for a natural progression from design to experiment/development and then to acquisition, test, and fielding. In particular, the usual solution space of the DOTMLPF domains has traditionally constrained the available options and programmatic implementation to a predominantly materiel acquisition process. Accordingly, the committee urges the Army to tailor its acquisition processes—within the legally mandated acquisition system—to ensure that satisfactory solutions are developed and fielded rapidly, with a full complement of training and support. The last section of this chapter describes what the committee views as obstacles and weaknesses embedded in recent/current acquisition practices and processes and what it suggests as ways to overcome them.
The committee’s expectation that the greatest returns on TSU investments will come from more thorough integration of the human dimension with materiel advances was discussed in Chapter 1. This expectation derives from the statement of task (including the clarifying guidance from the sponsor) combined with the committee’s awareness, illustrated throughout Chapter 2, of the new emphasis being placed on both the tactical and strategic importance of the dismounted TSU and Soldier in current and expected future Army missions. Since Soldiers touch everything the Army is and does, a challenge is to determine how the whole of today’s panoply of human dimension programs might be recast to give new emphases that will lead to dismounted TSUs and Soldiers with decisive overmatch.
As discussed in Chapter 1, the committee arrived at the following working definition for the human dimension:
As used in this study, the human dimension means all of the attributes of the individual Soldier and of the collected Soldiers of the TSU that impact performance of mission tasks. These include the skills, abilities, and knowledge brought with them into the Army upon recruitment, even from prior education or job experiences; personality traits; individual and collective military training; skills, abilities, and knowledge from prior military assignments; TSU command chain leadership; unit social environment including morale, cohesion, and emotional state; the ergonomic design or human factors engineering of the Soldier-machine interfaces; as well as locale acclamation (time zone, elevation, temperature, etc). Skills, abilities, and knowledge include the physical, mental, and emotional. Bearing with real impact but less directly on mission task performance are the domestic or family environments of
each Soldier, which have not been included here. Nor has the committee included issues of morality that may bear on overall mission accomplishment in a strategic sense but not on tactical tasks, except as morality issues may influence the effectiveness of the unit leadership chain or the health of the unit social environment.
During its information gathering, the committee heard the human dimension referenced and used in a variety of ways that fit somewhere in this definition but seldom if ever covered it comprehensively.
There are R&D programs in the Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences and in the Human Research and Engineering Directorate of the Army Research Laboratory on individual and collective training, leadership, and personnel, but none are adequate to the TSU overmatch challenges. Even if the individual DOTMLPF domains most relevant to the human dimension (e.g., doctrine, organization, training, leadership, and personnel) were adequately addressed in research and analysis, there are questions with exciting potential left hanging. For example, if selection instruments could make it more likely that accessing Soldiers have complementary temperaments, do the TSU leadership challenges in today’s theaters fade, or do they transform into more complex issues? If doctrine provided for more robust on-call fires and logistics support to dismounted TSUs, how should the organization structure exploit the opportunity for load-carrying ability to be a less-critical factor, especially for first-term Soldiers? Would such doctrine and organization changes allow a change in the personnel, possibly to longer-serving, more skilled Soldiers in the TSU? Unfortunately, the committee could find no research or analysis programs addressing any such interactions among the DOTMLPF domains.
The Army G1 (Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel) and the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology share responsibility for the MANpower, PeRsonnel, INTegration (MANPRINT) program, which seeks to ensure that key domains of Soldier-related issues are considered in the design of materiel systems. While integration across the domains is quite broad and doctrinally begins prior to formal materiel program inception, MANPRINT responds primarily to materiel program needs. MANPRINT as constituted currently would not be expected to seek an optimum TSU configuration, be concerned with TSU collective training, or be concerned with social dynamics within a TSU. MANPRINT’s influence is on the course of Army materiel acquisitions, although some of the analytical tools produced for the MANPRINT program could be applied to TSU design and evaluation that fully incorporates the human dimension.1
The Army Medical Corps, led by the (Army) Surgeon General, has responsibility for Soldier (and Soldier-family) physical (and increasingly, mental) health and especially the restoration of performance following injury. With R&D interests that are often colloquially delineated as “skin-in”, the (Army) Surgeon General’s interests focus on
1The MANPRINT domains include manpower (the number of Soldiers required), personnel capabilities (Soldier cognitive and physical capabilities), training; human factors engineering (design of Soldier-machine interfaces to reduce errors, improve performance, and reduce cognitive or other selection demands), system safety (reduce human and machine contributions to accidents), health hazards (chronic risks such as those regulated in civilian occupations by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration), and Soldier survivability (minimizing injury either from the environment or when a platform or unit engages in combat) (U.S. Army, 2001; U.S. Army, 2012).
avoiding performance debilitation rather than maximizing unit performance. Products of Army Medical Department R&D are fielded primarily through the medical practice of Army Medical Department personnel (physicians, nurses, etc). Some medical R&D results influence the design of rations and other programs of the Natick Research, Development and Engineering Center.
In sum, the Army lacks a working definition for the human dimension that is clear and comprehensive enough to inform and guide all of DOTMLPF, five elements of which involve human considerations. As a consequence, there is no single proponent for the TSU, and the Army lacks an in-place, practiced tool of implementation—that is, an administrative organization structured to implement new human dimension-centered technologies into Army practice. This limitation is applicable to all Army acquisition programs, but the scope of this report is limited to the TSU.
Finding: An essential principle for achieving overmatch capabilities is to recognize that the human dimension is at the core of all dismounted Soldier and TSU improvements.
Finding: Existing Army R&D programs are insufficiently resourced to provide a range of human dimension technology opportunities that could be selected to provide overmatching TSU performance.
Finding: The current niche organization of research, development, and engineering tends to preclude exploration of interaction opportunities among the human dimension-related domains of DOTMLPF.
Finding: The Army lacks an engineering-like function to orchestrate the transition of results of human dimension research into operational requirements.
Recommendation 1: To determine overmatch options for the tactical small unit, the Army should provide sufficient resources for the full range of human-dimension opportunities and solutions that might provide overmatching performance.
The Statement of Task discusses weapons with overmatch capability—the M1A2 tank, the F-22 fighter, and the Seawolf attack submarine—as a point of departure for considering overmatch capability for the dismounted Soldier and TSU. Such weapon systems consist of a number of complex subsystems that interact and can be considered to be interdependent. A commonality of all three weapon systems is that they employed systems engineering methodologies during conceptualization and development to determine the configurations of the various subsystems that were best-suited to meet a top-level set of performance and effectiveness metrics for the system as a whole. Since the Army considers the Soldier to be a system (and the committee concurs) and multiple individual Soldier systems constitute a TSU, it is reasonable, by extension from the three referenced overmatch systems, to assume there is value in using systems engineering
methodologies when considering improved capabilities for both the Soldier and the TSU. Perhaps in recognition of the above situation, the Statement of Task explicitly directs the committee to examine the applicability of systems engineering to Soldiers and small units. This section addresses that topic.
As currently structured, the Army’s dismounted TSU is a squad consisting of nine Soldiers organized into two four-Soldier fire teams, led by a squad leader. The capabilities of the TSU are thus a function of the capabilities of its members, how they are organized, their equipment, their training, and their leadership. The individual Soldiers may also be viewed as complex systems. Their basic attributes—physical, psychological, cognitive, sensory and perceptual—differ. Their individual materiel—clothing, weapons, body armor, sensors, communications devices, rations, etc.—impose upon them physical, psychological, cognitive, sensory, and perceptual loads that interact with training and leadership in determining their capabilities. Dependencies are numerous and complex, and it is important that the magnitude of the loads be managed in a top-down, holistic fashion to ensure that a balance is maintained among technologies that may enhance one aspect of capability at the expense of another.
The TSU is an even more complex system than the Soldiers in it. It is composed of individuals who must perform demanding collective tasks, including interfaces with supporting capabilities external to the TSU. It is equipped with materiel that performs unit-level functions rather than an individual function and that may require the cooperative actions of two or more Soldiers for optimal performance. The degree to which individuals are integrated into the small social element that is the TSU is important to collective capabilities. The organization chosen for the TSU provides a framework for decomposing collective tasks into components performed by individual Soldiers and for assigning different loads—again physical, psychological, cognitive, sensory and perceptual—to the members of the unit. Collective training establishes not just collective capability but also the bonds between Soldiers and between Soldiers and leaders. Dependencies that develop as a consequence of doctrine, organization, leadership, and training are critical determinants of decisive overmatch.
If a balanced approach is to be taken to identifying capability options that will make the TSU decisive, then the components of the TSU—the Soldiers—should be treated as systems, and the TSU should be treated as a system of systems. A holistic, top-down perspective should be used, dependencies should be identified and accounted for, and attention should be focused on both the enhanced performance offered by an option along one or more dimensions and the degradations along other dimensions caused by its introduction. Finally, the issue of budgets cannot be ignored. A means of trading between alternative integrated sets of options must be developed that facilitates answering the question “Given additional funds, on what should they be spent?” and the question “Given two alternative option-sets with different capabilities, which is preferred?”
Unlike developments of the Abrams tank or Seawolf submarine, which were a consequence of latent technology advantages and proven science and engineering including a well-developed system analysis, system engineering, and system-of-system analytic capability, the Army should not expect that developing human systems will be anything but challenging. It will not have a rigorous body of physics and engineering principles to apply to the task. But the development of such methodology has long been
Previous Army studies have advocated that a systems engineering methodology is important, given that the Army views the Soldier as a system. Appendix D discusses these studies in that context; the appendix also presents indicators that a systems engineering approach has thus far not been effectively implemented, despite the conclusions of these studies. The committee believes that the Soldier and the TSU must be treated as a system and a system of systems, respectively, if improvements in capability that synergistically provide overmatch are to be achieved. As indicated in the first section of this chapter, the committee attaches equal or greater importance to the integration of an expanded concept of the human dimension into the systems engineering approach to the Soldier and the TSU.
The goal of integrating the human dimension with a systems engineering approach is similar to that of human-systems integration, which builds upon and expands preceding work in human factors research, ergonomics, cognitive engineering, and other disciplines in order to focus on how human beings perform tasks using modern technologies and complex systems. Unfortunately, the programs in the Department of Defense that incorporate human-systems integration have fallen short because the principles of integration are applied too late in the development process and overlook aspects of the human dimension that are critical for TSU performance. See Box 3-1.
The military services have previously addressed limited elements of the human dimension in a systems context under the broad nomenclature of “human-systems integration” (HSI). Currently, the Air Force lead for HSI efforts is the Air Force Human Systems Integration Office, and the Navy lead program is at Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Dahlgren.a The Army continues to fulfill its HSI requirements through the MANPRINT program, which dates to 1986 (U.S. Army, 2009).
The HSI concept was intended to capture the full scope of work associated with accommodating people in systems, and much work published under this rubric has been concerned with integrating human-systems design considerations into the larger domain of systems engineering (for example, see Booher, 2003). However, the Army MANPRINT program focuses on the materiel acquisition process—the process that begins after requirements and specifications have been set for the materiel subsystems of what should be an integrated, human-based and materiel-equipped system. Unless and until the Army rigorously applies HSI principles across the full scope of task analysis (including, for example, communication protocols, mission planning, and concepts of operations for all potential tasks across the range of military operations), requirements definition and specification grounded in these task analyses, system design to those requirements, and acquisition of the integrated system—rather than just applying HSI to isolated materiel acquisition programs—MANPRINT will continue to achieve little more than adjusting the interfaces between the human and the tools of the Soldier’s trade. Furthermore, the committee believes the human dimension, as defined and discussed in this report, covers some nonmaterial elements of the DOTMLPF domains, such as leader development and small group dynamics, that are typically not addressed in the HSI context but are critical to overmatch for dismounted TSUs.
a See the Air Force Human Systems Integration Office website at ww3.safaq.hq.af.mil/organizations/afhsio/index.asp. HSI at NSWC Dahlgren is described at: www.navsea.navy.mil/nswc/dahlgren/ET/HSI/default.aspx.
To identify technologies that would make the Soldier and the TSU decisive on future battlefields, a holistic perspective must be applied. Desired capabilities of the Soldier and the TSU must be described in terms that permit progressively more detailed functional and task decomposition, followed by the assignment of solutions to collective and individual tasks to meet associated task requirements. It is worth noting that any solutions to the challenge of designing the TSU can be viewed in terms of one or more of the DOTMLPF domains: doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership, personnel, and facilities. Also, the objective function of the solutions must include robustness, versatility, resilience, and agility, to guard against the fragility of a single-point solution.
From the perspective of systems engineering, capabilities desired must be described in terms that can be quantified. Relevant examples are the time required to complete a mission, the residual capacity to undertake follow-on missions, or Soldier and TSU agility and versatility. These capabilities must be described in the context of one or more scenarios that incorporate the Army’s standard planning parameters of METT-TC (Mission, Enemy, Terrain and weather, Troops and support available—Time available, and Civilians). In addition, the capabilities must be jointly feasible as an integrated DOTMLPF solution.
Finding: The Army has consistently described the Soldier as a system (implying the TSU is a system of systems), and previous studies have concluded that the Army should use a systems engineering methodology for the Soldier (see Appendix D). Nevertheless, the committee found no evidence that these conclusions had been acted upon in a comprehensive manner. Moreover, these previous studies were framed largely in the context of providing enhanced capability via materiel solutions, whereas the committee has observed that overmatch capability can best be achieved by considering the full spectrum of applicable DOTMLPF domains, making even more important the need for a full-spectrum systems engineering capability in support of the Soldier/TSU.
Qualified system engineering professionals, possibly with centralized leadership located in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology and distributed among the Army Research, Development, and Engineering Centers, would be well positioned to trade off candidate solutions within or among the various DOTMLPF domains while ensuring that specified and required capabilities are achieved. Part of the staff for this function could also be located at the Maneuver Center of Excellence to ensure that an integrated view of the Soldier and the TSU is considered for all requirements, functions, architectures, and designs.
Recommendation 2: The Army should establish a Systems Engineering executive authority to support a system-of-systems engineering environment that will be responsible for developing methodologies and analytical tools to evaluate and acquire total system solutions for the dismounted Soldier and TSU. This executive authority must have sufficient seniority, influence, and budget control to operate effectively across the entire Army acquisition community (including research and development, test, and evaluation) in executing its systems engineering mission.
The decomposition of high level requirements and functions into concrete, measurable system attributes depends upon numerical values or metrics, which allow the systems designer to create and evaluate alternative solutions. At the lowest level of capability analysis, options for improving a capability can be characterized by attribute or parameter values. For the Soldier, these include, for example, performance measures of strength; endurance and load carrying ability; personality dimensions; cognitive, sensory and perceptual abilities; and auditory performance, as well as the standard measures of height, weight, etc. These parameters or attributes, combined with metrics linked to the other dimensions of DOTMLPF, determine how well a given task will be performed under given conditions: how long it will take, how accurate and complete the result will be, how much energy will be consumed, etc. These are MOPs, which quantify how well the Soldier or a TSU performs a task or sequence of tasks. An example would be engaging an enemy with an individual rifle or combined fires of a TSU at x meters and achieving a kill y percent of the time. Beyond the assessment of task performance for the Soldier and TSU are MOEs, which assess changes in behavior, capability, or operational environment. MOPs measure what is accomplished and help to verify whether objectives, goals and end states are being met—for example, achieving kills x percent of the time at y meters decreases TSU vulnerability to enemy small arms fires by z percent.
Associated with each MOP and MOE are acceptability criteria, which set threshold (minimal acceptable) and objective (desired) levels. It is also important to understand that MOPs and MOEs are not only associated with individual Soldiers: TSUs also have MOPs and MOEs. A focused discussion of metrics is contained in Appendix E.
Metrics play an essential role in defining what makes the dismounted Soldier and the TSU decisive and in selecting and evaluating combinations of technologies that would constitute a responsive solution. However, just listing a set of metrics is not enough: the real issue is how metrics are developed, defined, and used in the requirements definition, experimental analysis, acquisition, and test/evaluation processes. As explained with examples in Appendix E, the Army needs metrics that can be applied not just to one item of equipment or materiel solution; the same metrics should be appropriate for use, and applied in practice, across capability options that draw on different combinations of DOTMLPF domains and different approaches within those domains. That is the only way to provide an objective basis for comparing different combinations of possibilities to find the most satisfactory approach for decisive overmatch and to ensure that the approach includes robustness, versatility, resiliency, and agility—attributes necessary to guard against single-point, fragile solutions.
Both the Soldier and the TSU are complex systems of systems composed, at any given time, of humans and materiel and their extended network. The Soldiers and TSU (and someday, learning, autonomous systems) are trained to accomplish their missions in a particular organization according to established doctrine.2 The degree to which a particular mission is accomplished is further affected by such factors as local acclimatization, degree of sleep loss, leadership, social comfort in the small unit, and other
2Doctrine is normally considered to be aligned with operations at levels above the TSU. At the TSU level, doctrine is embedded in operational tactics, techniques, and procedures.
critical elements of the human dimension. If technologies are to be evaluated and design trades made, methods must be available that address the interdependencies among the DOTMLPF attributes of proposed solutions and task and mission performance. The Army does have a tried and tested methodology and a mature set of metrics for Armored Systems and Mounted Combat that, together with models and simulations, can predict or estimate engagement, battle, and campaign outcomes for a given set of performance data and conditions. However, a similar methodology and proven metrics do not exist for the Soldier or especially for the TSU, in dismounted operations such as maneuver warfare or wide area security.
Quantitative models for cost and performance interactions are routine tools of design and engineering for all components of the TSU—except for Soldiers! Such models of anthropometry (body shape and size) have been used for decades in design of military vehicle crew stations, individual weapons, and individual protective equipment. But, the extension of these models to be useful tools in the systems engineering of TSU ensembles has been limited by funding.
In all military services, models predicting crew task performance, including cognitive workload, as functions of operator or crew station design have been key design tools for military vehicles from self-propelled howitzers to aircraft. However, the committee could find no evidence that these models have been considered in designing information technology systems and networks for TSUs.
The interdependencies among the human and materiel aspects of solutions and the various Soldier and TSU capabilities are numerous, complex, and very important. The Army must recognize that any change that improves some aspect of performance or effectiveness will almost certainly impact others because, as stated earlier, Soldiers and TSUs are integrated systems of systems. Significant design trades must be made in the realm of Soldier and TSU, in part because missions have grown more complex, but also because of the potential gains associated with integrating the Soldier and TSU into the Army network. For example, it is now possible, and capabilities will continually grow, to develop Level 1 situational awareness via both organic assets and feeds from adjacent and higher echelons. but this increase in information input comes at the cost of a higher cognitive load. Similarly, the operation of unmanned air or ground vehicles in the TSU may require that organization be changed to ensure that the addition of cognitive and physical tasks does not degrade performance in some other area. As a third example, the potential need to carry additional gear incorporating new technologies may compromise performance over longer duration missions. Options to increase survivability via body armor may appear attractive but if weight is increased, tactical mobility will be compromised and incidences of skeletal-muscular injuries may increase. As a final example, sharing enhanced situational awareness through materiel and human dimension capabilities improves situational understanding (and therefore decision-making) for the TSU as a unit, as well as for the individual Soldiers.
The committee was made aware of ongoing Army efforts to develop MOPs and MOEs for the TSU but was unable to gain any insights into efforts underway. The committee can thus only emphasize how critically necessary a revolutionary metrics development approach is for supporting a rigorous assessment of the integration of all components of the TSU: individual Soldier, materiel, human dimension, doctrinal, and organizational—and their interactions. Clearly, some existing MOPs such as probability of
kill at range or sprint speed across a gap will remain germane. But performance factors such as degraded TSU maneuverability, incidence of Soldier injury caused by loads, or degradation of situational understanding due to fatigue are even more important for assessing decisive action. New factors such as face-to-face communications skills with civilians and conflict resolution skills are now part of security tasks for missions both present and future. From a human dimension perspective, MOPs and MOEs for the TSU must address the impact of organization, leadership, training, and personnel on small unit performance in both the short term and long term. Assessments of new capabilities—for instance, the integration of the TSU into the Army information network—cannot merely measure the performance of a single enabler, such as the materiel interface to an information system, but must rather evaluate all the accompanying doctrinal use, organizational assignment, training, leadership abilities, and personnel skills that must be considered in developing MOPs and MOEs aimed at ensuring TSU overmatch.
The committee recognizes that a rigorous methodology will not happen overnight for developing and maturing MOPs and MOEs that: (1) address the integration of all aspects of Soldier and TSU enhancements, plus their complex interdependencies, and (2) enable objective, validated predictions of Soldier and TSU performance and effectiveness. However the committee was made aware of a significant body of research that has explored the relationships among attributes of Soldiers and TSUs and performance. This research, primarily in the area of TSU capabilities, should be assembled and brought to bear, recognizing that in many cases its application will produce only marginal improvements until larger investigations can be undertaken that address multiple variables simultaneously, in the field or in the lab, to better understand the TSU as an integrated system of systems.
In support of an analytical systems engineering approach, the Army must develop a rigorous methodology as well as a comprehensive set of MOEs and MOPs against which to measure performance and degree of mission success. The Army Warfighting Experiments and the Combat Training Centers may provide venues for opportunistic data collection, particularly when considering topics for which some narrow research results already exist but have not been integrated into the Army's knowledge base. However, there will be topics for which rigorously designed and executed experiments will be necessary, and those might compromise the objectives of a particular Army Warfighting Experment or the Combat Training Centers. Perhaps more important for the subject of this report, the lack of MOPs and MOEs that realistically assess both human and materiel contributions to required capabilities has vitiated real progress toward holistic design and evaluation of the TSU and Soldier, despite a history of advice to that end (see Appendix D).
With regard to the development of a methodology and accompanying metrics, the Army must ensure that it reviews the appropriateness of traditional metrics as well as developing new and innovative metrics development processes that adequately relate to the envisioned Soldier and TSU system-of-systems concepts. Some traditional metrics such as “loss exchange ratio” may not be the most appropriate for assessing the impact of various human dimension characteristics—for example, improved selection of personnel, better training, better leadership—whereas other traditional metrics previously used to assess materiel systems (e.g., impact on decision times, used to evaluate mission command systems may also be adequate for analysis of non-materiel enhancements. New
metrics—for example, ability of squad members to adapt rapidly to the sudden loss of direct and distant leadership with no loss of momentum or decisive advantage—will likely need to be developed. Above all, the Soldier as “end user” should be included at both ends of the design process by contributing to the formulation of MOPs and MOEs on which the design is based and by participating in operational testing of concepts and prototypes during subsequent development and acquisition phases. The description of such a methodology, as well as the role of appropriate MOPs, MOEs, and indicators, is important enough to warrant a fuller discussion, which is provided in Appendix E.
Finding: A rigorous systems engineering methodology and an accompanying comprehensive set of measures that better represent the performance and effectiveness of a TSU are required to fully support the anticipated benefits of both a richer palette of potential solutions. This would include the capabilities and limitations of all of the components—materiel, human, and other dimensions—and their interactions, in objective terms. This need for more objective measures is directed at the entirety of the TSU ensemble that includes human and materiel dimensions, as well as other dimensions and the interactions among them.
Recommendation 3: The Army should develop, maintain, and evolve an optimal set of measures of performance (MOPs) and measures of effectiveness (MOEs) for assessing capability improvements for the dismounted Soldier and TSU by investing in an analysis architecture and infrastructure, including a comprehensive metrics development methodology that supports objective dialogue among combat and system developers, systems engineers, trainers, and program activities. The MOPs and MOEs, together with the guidance for using them, should be tested and validated for practical application and ease of use, as well as for accuracy as predictors and indicators of desired performance and effectiveness outcomes.
As noted in the previous two sections and discussed more fully in Appendix D, multiple studies have advised the Army to train, equip, and sustain the dismounted Soldier as a holistic entity or system, rather than as a user of independent materiel components or “piece-parts.” Yet the committee found limited, if any, evidence that the concept has been implemented within the Army. As noted above, the committee was made aware of an effort to develop MOPs and MOEs appropriate for the range of operations expected of a dismounted TSU, but it was unable to determine the nature of the effort or if it was still active. There is no evidence of the artifacts one would expect to find if a systems engineering approach were being executed. For example, the committee found no architectures for the Soldier as an integrated whole, nor for the TSU. Requirements were found to be incomplete and design criteria not yet developed. Artifacts such as weight tapes may exist for specific materiel systems but do not exist for the full sets of Soldier or TSU equipment. Functional decomposition and task analyses beyond the level of the Army universal task list do not appear to be in use by the various agents responsible for
training, equipping, or sustaining the Soldier and the TSU. There does not appear to be a single authority for defining trades among the DOTMLPF attributes of the Soldier or the TSU and deciding on solutions that are consistent with a holistic, integrated approach. Given this state of affairs, the committee concluded that there are significant barriers to treating the Soldier and the TSU as systems or systems of systems. The committee believes that one of these barriers is the current set of acquisition practices, as discussed in the remainder of this chapter.
For more than two decades, the Army has used the term “Soldier as a System” to describe a holistic approach to developing, procuring, and supporting Soldier capabilities. Yet the committee found no evidence of Army processes that routinely and systematically consider the interdependencies and synchronization between the squad and (small) unit capabilities, and no program of record exists that supports the approach envisioned either in reports released in 1991, 2000, and 2006 (see Appendix D) or in the deliberations of this committee. Instead—at least as of the fiscal year 2010 budget—development, procurement, and support for the dismounted Soldier and the TSU were defined through more than 70 programs of record. During the past 10 years, rapid fielding to deployed or deploying TSUs and Soldiers—typically accomplished outside the formal acquisition process in order to meet urgent wartime capability gaps—has exacerbated the historical piecemeal approach to outfitting Soldiers for their roles in the tasks and missions of a dismounted TSU.
One symptom of the problem lies in the requirements process. The committee was unable to identify in existing Army requirements generation and acquisition processes an integrated assessment methodology (and associated tools) adequate for evaluating desired enhancements to the physical and cognitive performance and mission effectiveness of either the individual dismounted Soldier or a dismounted TSU. A second symptom of the problem is associated with the acquisition system—or at least with current practices within that system. The committee found little evidence of the ties that should exist across the design, development, and acquisition of materiel for the dismounted Soldier and TSU.
Progress is unlikely to happen unless two fundamental changes are made, associated with the two symptoms described above. The Army must create a single, formal, system-of-systems program of record at the TSU level with appropriate authority and budget. Second, consistent with the recommendations of the Final Report of the 2010 Army Acquisition Review, a “collaborative requirements process” should be established under the leadership of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) to develop requirements in a holistic, integrated fashion for the TSU and the Soldiers in it. Only if single, overarching leadership is formally established with sufficient authority and budget is it likely that the necessary systems approach will finally be implemented. That leadership should review Army acquisition processes to determine if they should be changed. For example, does the equipping process as embodied in the Army Force Generation paradigm mean that it is no longer appropriate to think of materiel buys for the total force? Should designs no longer accommodate the “lowest common denominator” of Soldier capability? Instead, does creating a dismounted TSU and Soldier with decisive overmatch capabilities require assigning higher quality recruits to the TSUs and designing materiel with their higher quality in mind?
Compounding the shortcomings of the requirements generation and acquisition processes, the committee believes that the MOPs and MOEs that do exist are much too
simplistic (e.g., MOP of basic rifle marksmanship, MOE of loss-exchange ratio) to assess the complexities (especially cognitive aspects) of an integrated Soldier/TSU analysis effort. Ties that should exist across design, development, and acquisition of materiel systems for the dismounted TSU and Soldier just do not exist.
An integrated acquisition approach for all Soldier/TSU systems is lacking. For example, the portfolio of the Program Executive Office-Soldier (PEO-Soldier) includes lethality (personal weapons), survivability (personal armor), and operating systems (clothing, parachutes) but not direct control of important areas such as human dimension considerations, communications systems, sensor systems, and robotic systems. Additionally, Product Manager, Ground Soldier is located in Fort Lewis, Washington, rather than near the TRADOC subject matter experts at the Maneuver Center of Excellence in Fort Benning, Georgia.
The acquisition strategy implicit in presentations to the committee from PEO-Soldier and the Maneuver Center of Excellence is built on whole-of-Army buys. This strategy is too ponderous and slow for rapidly advancing communications and information collection and networking technologies.3 It leads to buying capability solutions that are either inadequate for the range of perceived threats or too expensive and lengthy to be affordable and practical investments.
The array of technologies available to the Army constitutes an impressive set of potential opportunities to improve the capabilities of the dismounted Soldier and TSU. However no one technology solution in isolation is capable of achieving consistent overmatch, and for each technology solution there is a danger of unanticipated consequences of varying degree unless a holistic approach is taken to evaluating and selecting innovations and improvements.
In the committee’s judgment, a key action that the Army can take to facilitate improving capability and achieving overmatch is to focus on the acquisition process. Responsibility and authority for Soldier and TSU research and development must be centralized. The committee is not the first body to make this recommendation, but its importance—in this period of the central role of dismounted infantry and constrained budgets—is if anything greater than at any time in the last two decades.
Finding. Despite multiple advisory reports, extending back more than two decades, on the critical importance of a holistic approach to developing, procuring, and supporting Soldier capabilities, the Army is still acquiring kit and gear for the dismounted Soldier through separate programs of record (70 separate programs in the fiscal year 2010 budget). Army acquisition essentially consists of providing for independent efforts to support the TSU and Soldier, rather than providing for integrated systems. The urgency to support the force in the field during current operations has led to a reliance on rapid equipment fielding, which has exacerbated this stove-piped approach.
It is questionable that solutions to achieve overmatch capabilities can be successfully implemented with the Army’s typical acquisition approaches because the principled groundwork for a natural progression from analyzing the TSU as a system has
3The “communications and information collection and networking technologies” to which the committee is referring includes all those previously included under the military rubric (now replaced) of C4ISR (command, control, communications, and computing; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance).
The approach of acquiring and fielding every “new” technology to the entire Army has become both impractical and unaffordable. It runs counter to processes tailored to the need for more “rapid fielding” in Iraq and Afghanistan, and is especially counter to fielding in support of dismounted TSU deployments.
Finding: The Army acquisition processes can be tailored—within the legally mandated acquisition system—to develop and field solutions optimized for system-level effectiveness with a full complement of training and support.
Recommendation 4: The Army should establish an executive authority for TSU integration, responsible for option generation and evaluation, requirements currency, and programmatic acquisition for the Soldier and TSU within a metrics-driven, system-of-systems engineering environment.
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U.S. Army. 2001. Manpower and Personnel Integration (MANPRINT) in the System Acquisition Process. Army Regulation 602-2. 1 June 2001. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Army.
U.S. Army. 2009. US Army FY09 Human Systems Integration Plan (Annex to the OSD HSI Management Plan), Version 1.0. Arlington, Va.: Headquarters, Department of the Army, G-1. Available online www.acq.osd.mil/se/docs/Army-FY09-HSI-Plan.pdf. Accessed March 14, 2013.
U.S. Army. 2012. The MANPRINT Program. Seven MANPRINT Domains. Available online http://www.manprint.army.mil/manprint/domains.html. Accessed March 22, 2013.