This is better than trying to find out what inventory we have in different parts of the country, Army chief General Bipin Rawat has said

NEW DELHI: In an attempt to automate its inventory system, the Army is digitising all the items in its possession—from ammunition stocks to vehicles to aviation assets. The Army has undertake the exercise to increase the “visibility” of its existing inventory and cut down on wastage by optimally using the available resources and reducing the maintenance costs. It is also aimed at improving the supply chain to the Army’s logistical echelons, as the system also reveals to the logistician where a particular item is required.

“Automated inventory is coming up for spares, vehicles and equipment. This is better than trying to find out what inventory we have in different parts of the country. We will know what we have in the inventory and what we can delete,” Army chief General Bipin Rawat has said.

The Army chief also explained that the automation of ordnance inventory has commenced. “It will help in better management of stores by reducing wastage and avoiding purchase of same items by different agencies and finally help in cutting cost,” he said.

Officials dealing with the matter added that the automated inventory system is called Computerised Inventory Control Project (CICP). It is based on SAP, an enterprise application software, which has been modified to meet the Army’s requirements.

The project is being implemented in two phases for the Ordnance Corps, which is tasked with handling the supplies for the Army. The corps deals in four verticals: Ordnance (clothing, guns, spares, etc), ammunition, vehicles and aviation. Officials explained that in the first phase, the central level, which includes the defence ministry, the Army headquarters and close to 20 logistical echelons in the four verticals, will be embedded in the system

In the second phase, the system will connect all the central depots and 500 echelons to each other and to the data centre in Delhi. The system will not only automate inventory, but also the data such as file movement, issue and receipt of inventory and provisions, which presently was done manually on hard files.

Although the process of automation in the echelons had started a few years ago, it was only stand alone, didn’t have all the functionalities and interconnection with each other. “Now, with the new system all the functionalities of the logistic echelons will be automated, like even attendance and leave,” said an official.