Marine Corps Business Research

Business Research Applications Paper
In every business atmosphere some form of research being conducted at all levels to improve performance, make better returns on investments, decide on the next project, and many other forms. Research is conducted to provide managers with decision making abilities. How a manager decides to complete one task over another is often based on research. This paper will focus on research in the Marine Corps.

Business Research is defined as “a systematic inquiry that provides information to guide managerial decisions. More specifically, it is a process of planning, acquiring, analyzing, and disseminating relevant data, information, and insights to decision makers in ways that mobilize the organization to take appropriate actions that, in turn, maximize business performance.” (Cooper & Schindler, 2006, p. 4).

In the Marine Corps, many forms of research are being conducted at all times to improve the capabilities and cost effectiveness of the Service as a whole. Many different categories are covered in research in the Marine Corps such as Recruiting and Retention, Training and Education, Procurement and use of various forms of gear and warfighting. The area I will focus on specifically is the staple of the Marine Corps, Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare. Within the realm of Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare and Combating Terrorism Department, areas such as Command and Control, Firepower, Force Protection, Land Mine Countermeasures, Human Performance, Intelligence, Logistics and Maneuver are all areas of research.

The mission of the Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare and Combating Terrorism Department as a whole is: “To lead the Department of the Navy’s Science and Technology effort that develops future combat capabilities for Naval Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare and the Department’s role in Combating Terrorism through the exploitation and subsequent application of Science and Technology in order to enhance the ability of the Navy-Marine Corps team to achieve assured access and conduct decisive operations as the naval portion of a Joint campaign.” “To lead the Department of the Navy’s Science and Technology effort that develops future combat capabilities for Naval Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare and the Department’s role in Combating Terrorism through the exploitation and subsequent application of Science and Technology in order to enhance the ability of the Navy-Marine Corps team to achieve assured access and conduct decisive operations as the naval portion of a Joint campaign.”

The specific components of the Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare and Combating Terrorism Department are below.

Command and Control, often referred to as C2, is basically the use of authority and direction of a commander over assigned forces to accomplish a mission. In today’s use of many forms of communication the C2 has become C4, Command and Control, Computers and Communication. C4 research is aimed at “markedly improving on capabilities in over-the-horizon, beyond line-of-sight, and restricted environment communications; mobile networking; tactical decision making; tactical situational awareness; and small unit position location and navigation.” (United States Navy, 2009).

Firepower research is meant to “develop advanced technologies for application on current and future Marine Corp Expeditionary Firepower systems and all other elements of the kill chain. Current efforts focus on enhanced accuracy, tailored lethality, improved mobility, enhanced targeting and lightweight components.” (United States Navy, 2009).

Force Protection research is meant to “develop, demonstrate and transition advanced technologies for future protection of today’s warfighter in the areas of individual Marine platforms, equipment and autonomous systems. Enhance the ability to stop the most common threats, counter and readily adapt to future threats from a global network of violent extremists while minimizing impact on mission accomplishment.” (United States Navy, 2009).

Mine Counter Measures (MCM) division “develops technologies for critical Marine Air Ground Task Force (MAGTF) Mine Countermeasures needs to make sea and land MCM an integrated, seamless, and fully integral component of Expeditionary Maneuver Warefare. Focus areas include landmine detection, breaching/neutralization of all mine types and enhanced survivability.” (United States Navy, 2009).

Human Performance, Training and Survivability (HPT&S) division focuses on the ability to “empower today’s warfighter by closing human performance gaps using training and survivability solutions, thereby creating tomorrow’s superior warrior. HPT&S is defined broadly to include all aspects of human performance in the domains of Cognitive Performance, Physical Performance and Survivability, and Training Technology Enhancement.” (United States Navy, 2009).

Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance division focuses on “developing and leveraging advanced technologies for applications in future intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance. Enhance situational awareness, and tactical decision making.” (United States Navy, 2009).

The Logistics division focuses on “developing and maturing technologies for application to current and future Marine Corps expeditionary systems. Focus is on supporting on the tenets of Seabased Logistics with emerging technologies focusing of improved distribution, reduced combat load in areas of fuel, water and energy and improved maintenance capabilities.” (United States Navy, 2009).

Lastly, the Maneuver division focuses on “developing, demonstrating, and transitioning technologies that will increase the warfighting capabilities and effectiveness of the MAGTF. This Thrust will capture emerging and “leap ahead” technologies in the areas of mobility, materials, propulsion, survivability and unmanned systems.” (United States Navy, 2009).

All these divisions are focused on making the Marine Corps a better and more capable fighting force. I believe that the Marine Corps has every tool needed to conduct research properly and that the research is conducted in a manner which will best suit the needs of the Corps. The Marine Corps puts very capable people in positions to best effect change in needed areas. Every Marine will conduct a debrief of every mission, no matter the size or scope, once the mission is complete. These “after action” reports are always sent to higher headquarters for review and will eventually make it to the “Lessons Learned” division. Once the missions and briefs reach this level, a report will be generated and sent out to the Marine Corps as a whole. Every Marine will be informed of the problems and success areas of every mission. The lessons learned are sent directly to the schools that teach a particular skill to improve the abilities and knowledge of the young Marines being trained.

Research that is conducted in the warfighting area of the Marine Corps is done very well. One are that I believe needs improvement is the military career development. I believe that many young Marines are not informed of the opportunities that are available, or the steps needed to be successful early in their careers. Young Marines are often focused on learning skills needed for their particular job. This often creates an atmosphere where little time available for professional growth as a careerist. I know and understand that many Marines will only serve a short period on active duty, usually four years, and they are not concerned with what they are doing now and how it may affect their career years down the road. If more training research were conducted to improve the knowledge of young Marines for their future, I believe many Marines would stay in the Marine Corps and be more successful in every aspect of their life.

Regardless of the business type, research is required to be successful. Every manager, leader or executive must have good research in order to make informed and sound decisions. The Marine Corps is well aware of the need for research and does a very good job of it in most areas. Throughout this paper, I have discussed many forms of research currently being conducted for the warfighting portion of the Marine Corps now and into the future.

References
1. Cooper, D.R., & Schindler, P.S. (2006). Business Research Methods (9th ed.). New York: \
McGraw-Hill Irwin.
2. United States Navy. (2009). Office of Naval Research. Retrieved May 16, 2009, from
http://www.onr.navy.mil/sci_tech/30/

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