The U.S. Army is experiencing the joys of paperless collaboration and task management.
It’s been about eight months since the Army Enterprise Staff Management Systems (AESMS) project office followed the directive of the Army vice chief of staff and transitioned the headquarters’ 8,367 users to an off-the-shelf Accenture digital task management tool known as “TMT.” So far, things are going great.
TMT promises effective task management for the “enterprise,” adaptable to use cases beyond a single team or project. But transitioning to this tool meant pulling employees away from a piecemeal system that involved some automation and a lot of folders being passed around.
“Transition was a little difficult — you know change management is tough as you bring new things in,” Lt. Col. Toy Frasier, a product lead at AESMS, told FedScoop. But now that the solution is live, he added, users see the benefits and feeling positively about it.
These benefits include added transparency and efficiency — Gus Burnside, deputy product lead at AESMS, told FedScoop the office has seen a 15 percent decrease in late tasks since TMT went live. Users can also track where in the process a task is, which program leaders say helps build accountability.
Now, Army HQ is seeking to install itself as the “program of record” for the tool, with the AESMS team promoting TMT to other commands and helping those commands onboard too.
AESMS holds a centralized contract with Accenture as well so that individual commands don’t have to pursue individual contracts. Commands can simply procure the tool, software-as-a-service style, through headquarters, Burnside said.
Project leaders like Frasier are very aware that change is hard, and that this inertia is the biggest hurdle the office faces in its evangelical mission. But he’s confident that ultimately the benefits of digital collaboration speak for themselves.
“Trust the process and allow it to happen,” Frasier advised.