Navy leads Australian business in innovation and process improvement

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Jessica Craig (author)

Topic(s): Honours, Awards and Trophies, Science, Technology & Innovation, Fleet Support Unit

Mr Gregory Laxton (former Executive Director Fleet Support Unit) and current ED FSU, Captain Arran Melville. (photo: )
Mr Gregory Laxton (former Executive Director Fleet Support Unit) and current ED FSU, Captain Arran Melville.

In a testament to Navy people and culture, Warfare Innovation Navy and Fleet Support Unit (FSU) have won Australian Business Awards for Business Innovation and Process Improvement respectively.

It is the second time Warfare Innovation Navy (WIN) has taken out a national business innovation award in as many years for demonstrating innovative solutions to existing business needs.

Director General Warfare Innovation Navy, Captain Adam Allica said it was on honour to win the coveted award for WIN’s actions and organisational development in creating a culture committed to achieving widespread innovation that supports Navy’s mission ‘To Fight and Win at Sea’.

“We have used 3D printers and augmented reality technology at the Centre for Innovation and on ships to help spark innovative behaviour in our people by providing them with new technology and tools which enables the visualisation and realisation of innovative ideas,” Captain Allica said.

“These afloat workshops and other initiatives have provided Commands a focal point for capturing the physical momentum for innovation and acted as a catalyst for their own unit innovations to flourish.”

In addition, the branch creates opportunities for Navy and APS personnel to engage beyond Navy through leading events such as Autonomous Warrior, the first Defence hackathon and offering challenges, hacks and workshop events with Industry, DST and Academia.

Fleet Support Unit (FSU) has also been riding a wave of fresh thinking, by reforming business practices and culture which they were recognised for by the Australian Business Awards.

Executive Director of Fleet Support Unit Australia, Captain Arran Melville said it was a testament to the team led by Captain Gregory Laxton who developed and successfully executed a series of actions across the organisation such as Lean Six Sigma training, Pulse Surveys and a major IMPPACT (Integrated Maintenance Production Planning and Control Tool) upgrade.

“At the end of 2019, through the success of the process improvements, FSU had achieved a fifty percent increase of work utilisation, representing a fifty percent improvement in productivity,” Captain Melville said.

“The achievements during 2019 built firm foundations that FSU will build upon long into the future and has ensured it is “trusted to deliver” by Navy, CASG and Industry, has excellent sustainment outcomes, and is regarded by our officers and sailors as being a great place to work.”