Recap: Sustainment Symposium 2020

Recap: Sustainment Symposium 2020

The team here at GDCA has always looked forward to attending the DMSMS conference each December as a capstone to the year. It was a magical time when DMSMS wonks obsessed with DMSMS solutions and obsolescence management were no longer relegated to a corner of the exhibit hall. We were front and center, and questions of how to innovate and advance the work of dealing effectively with DMSMS were met with open and vigorous conversation.

But as news of COVID broke in early 2020, a domino effect slowly decimated the conference schedule as the world shut down. We quickly adjusted to a new normal. But when August/September rolled around, it hit us: we weren’t going to be able to share what we had learned since we last met with our community and more important, we wouldn’t have the opportunity to hear where everyone else was with their work.

GDCA is a legacy equipment manufacturer (LEM), and although we never host conferences, we do specialize in crafting legacy product lifecycle solutions. Thus, the Sustainment Symposium was born.

In the last few years, the workaround DMSMS solution-finding has solidified into the idea of focusing our efforts on sustainment as opposed to obsolescence management. Because that is what we’re all about and what we want to study and discuss, “sustainment” easily became the theme of the symposium.

When we reached out to our community members, they responded quickly and eagerly. Soon, we assembled a panel of thought leaders in the DMSMS community who all had their own take on how focusing on sustainment impacts DMSMS solution-finding.

Although we want to thank everyone for their attendance and active participation in the symposium, we especially want to thank our presenters and panelists. From learning about the science and metrics of sustainment to the planning and practical application of sustainment methodology, it was a DMSMS wonk’s perfect afternoon. The only thing that could have been better is if we could have gone out for drinks together afterward.

We know that true life cycle sustainment is achievable in our lifetime, and we hope to continue that conversation by highlighting thought leaders who are moving the needle. For those of you who missed the event and for those who attended but have been asking: please visit the Sustainment Symposium resource page for access to the slide decks and discussion videos. For those of you interested in continuing the conversation or workshopping any DMSMS or sustainment issues of your own, we hope you will join us for our monthly office hours.

Thanks again, and we look forward to the next time we can all get together.


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As the pioneer in COTS obsolescence management, GDCA is authorized by our OEM partners to continue to manufacture and repair the embedded legacy products critical to long-lasting applications. Using OEM-authorized IP and original specifications, GDCA provides repair, long-term customer support, manufacturing, and sustainment for over three thousand End-of-Life, COTS, and custom-embedded computer boards and systems.

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