The Essington Lewis Awards recognise excellence in industry and the Department of Defence collaboration, working together to overcome challenges or problems – ensuring that the ADF has or will have the materiel it needs, when it needs it, and at a cost that represents value for money.

Sadly, this year's awards could not go ahead in-person as initially planned due to pandemic-related restrictions and domestic border closures. However, ADM will announce the award winners on our website and via electronic direct messages on Monday October 18.

Ahead of the announcement, we will be running a series of articles on the finalists in each category. Today we are proud to cover the finalists for Minor Acquisition - under $50 million: the SmartBase Maintenance Scheduling from Navy’s Missile Maintenance team and Ocean Software; and the Seaworthiness Management and Assurance Reporting Tool (SMART) Project from 12th Level and Navy’s Seaworthiness team.

SmartBase Maintenance Scheduling: Ocean Software & Navy Missile Maintenance

The Navy Missile Maintenance group in Orchard Hills approached Melbourne-based Ocean Software to search for a simple solution to improve situational awareness and consolidate multiple, disparate and disconnected systems to undertake maintenance activities.

The result was a 'cost-effective, speedy and simple' solution that saves time, limits or removes duplicate data entry, reduces error, increases visibility and situational awareness across single/multiple facilities, while enhancing reporting to Management and Commanders.

A true collaboration between Defence and Ocean was key to the project’s success despite the challenges of Covid-19. Defence was able to utilise simple procurement methods to get the project approved. A clear Statement of Work set the boundaries for the project and ensured each party was clear on expectations, what was to be delivered, and what was in and out of scope.

Bi-weekly project status meetings ensured the project remained on track and regular technical workshops and reviews ensured all software functionality was developed and delivered according to the customer’s requirements, on budget and on time.

The Seaworthiness Management and Assurance Reporting Tool (SMART) Project from 12th Level and Navy’s Seaworthiness team.

According to CDRE Chris Smith, SMART is "an intuitive, integrated, evidence-based, (near) real-time seaworthiness decision-making tool that provides the ground truth on the preparedness and readiness of the asset - measured against its Operating and Support Intent."

The program began in 2018, when staff were required to manually trawl through vast amounts of raw data in various fundamental inputs to capability databases. 12thLevel used their human-centred-design methodology and worked closely with SURFOR to unravel the complexity of the seaworthiness management problem.

The use of SMART in areas of risk near-to-real-time identification, analysis and management has introduced accountability whilst reducing ship-staff workload. In turn, this has allowed for significantly increased decision making speed, as well as assurance of the fleet program and warship capability. The system will be used by Navy Information Management to form the backbone of their Enterprise level data warehouse.

Congratulations to both finalists and we look forward to announcing a winner on October 18.


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