U.S. Navy Shipyards: An Evaluation of Workload--and Workforce--Management Practices

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The U.S. Navy spends nearly $ 4 billion annually on maintaining ships. Most of this work is done at public shipyards that perform some of the most complex tasks the Department of Defense must accomplish. Shipyard managers face some unique challenges. The shipyards are required to be flexible enough to meet both planned and emerging operational needs that can cause significant disruptions to schedules and workloads. Laws and policies dictating when, where, and by whom maintenance can be performed limit management options.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780833045690
  • Publisher: Rand Publishing
  • Publication date: 12/25/2008
  • Pages: 186
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

John F. Schank (PhD in Information Technology (All But Dissertation) George Mason University) is a senior operations research analyst at RAND.

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Table of Contents

Preface iii

Figures ix

Tables xi

Summary xiii

Acknowledgments xxi

Abbreviations xxiii

Chapter One Introduction 1

Depot Maintenance of Naval Ships Is Big Business 1

Overview of the Four Public Shipyards and Other Repair Facilities 4

Norfolk Naval Shipyard 6

Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility 7

Portsmouth Naval Shipyard 8

Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility 9

Other Facilities 11

Management of the Public Shipyards 13

Objective of the Research 15

Research Approach 15

Organization of the Monograph 16

Chapter Two An Evaluation of Planned and Actual Workload Demand 17

Shipyard Workload Plans 17

Factors Influencing the Demand for Depot-Level Services 19

Force Structure 19

Maintenance Policies, Practices and Philosophies 21

Maintenance Requirements 22

Other Considerations 23

Workload-Demand Forecasts 24

Variability and Uncertainty in Planned and Actual Demand 27

Summary 32

Chapter Three Cost-Effective Workforce Strategies 35

Workforce Planning at the Public Depots 36

The Shipyard Workforce and Workforce-Planning Process 36

Workforce-Management Strategies for Meeting Variability and Uncertainty 38

Analytical Framework and Methodology 45

The Workforce Allocation Tool 47

Data on Workload Demand 49

Data on Workforce Characteristics 50

Data on Cost Factors 51

Productivity and the Relative Cost of Labor 53

Variation in Productivity with the Use of Overtime 53

The Effect of Worker Type and Experience on Productivity 56

The Relative Productive Cost of Labor 58

Strategies for Meeting Planned Workload Demands 61

Implications of Workload Inflation 63

Findings andRecommendations 68

Chapter Four Additional Workforce Considerations and Sensitivity Results 71

Shop-Level Evaluations 72

Workload Variability 73

Overtime 74

Recruiting Challenges 75

Time to Become Productive 76

Attrition 76

Demographics 76

Shop-Level Summary 78

The Limitations of Seasonal and Borrowed Labor and the Implications of Off-Site Work 79

The Implications of Productivity Assumptions 80

The Sensitivity of Available Workforce and Total Cost to Overtime Productivity 80

Increased Productivity for Borrowed Workers 82

Chapter Five An Evaluation of Alternative Workload Allocation Strategies 85

Shift Work from the Private Sector to the Public Sector 87

A Systemic Shift 87

Short-Term Shift 93

Shift Work Between Public Shipyards 95

Summary 96

Chapter Six An Evaluation of Other Organizations' Workload- and Workforce-Management Practices 97

United Kingdom Dockyards 98

Workload-Management Strategies 98

Workforce-Management Strategies 99

European Commercial Shipbuilders 100

Workload-Management Strategies 100

Workforce-Management Strategies 101

The Depots of Other U.S. Military Services 101

U.S. Army Depots 102

U.S. Army Depot Workload-Management Strategies 103

U.S. Army Depot Workforce-Management Strategies 104

NASA Space-Shuttle Maintenance 105

Findings Relevant to the U.S. Navy 108

Retain Core Capabilities and Competencies, Subcontract Others 108

Avoid Excess Overtime 108

Use Temporary Labor to Meet Infrequent Peak Demands 109

Promote a Multiskilled Workforce 109

Smooth Workload Demands 110

Augment Work 110

Track Performance 111

Chapter Seven Conclusions and Implications 113


A Depot Laws and Policies Governing Management Options 119

B Depot Maintenance Industrial Base Study Questionnaire 127

C Mathematical Details of the Workforce Allocation Tool 143

References 157

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