Perspective

Employee Spotlight: Todd Stiefler, Director, Logistics Transformation

April 4, 2022
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 Photo of Todd Stiefler with a Technology Background

How long have you been with LMI?

I came to LMI in 2019 from the software division of a large conglomerate where I had worked in its product and commercial organizations. I spent my last two years there standing up and running a team to capture industrial IoT opportunities in the global aerospace and defense sector. During our partnership with LMI on a predictive maintenance pursuit, I got to know the team and the rest is history.

 

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What are you responsible for as director, logistics transformation (LTX), at LMI?

As director of LTX, I lead a team accelerating the delivery of technology-enabled logistics solutions to our federal customers. We bring the best of LMI’s deep logistics subject matter expertise and marry it with our proven capabilities in data engineering, data science, and agile development to create uniquely valuable tools for our customers. Our team is a mix of LMI experts and those with tech company experience who drive process discipline for portfolio and product management, customer discovery, commercialization, and customer success. We help LMI rapidly develop solutions, embrace innovation, and compete effectively with other commercial firms. These firms have neat digital tools but no understanding of our customers and, thus, cannot deliver the tailored solution that we offer.

LTX is one of LMI’s newest subservice lines (SSL). Why did LMI decide to stand up this new SSL?

LMI has been growing rapidly; however, with the evolution of digital logistics solutions in supply chain resiliency or predictive logistics, for example, we were not moving fast enough. LMI had been organized around communities of experts in different functional areas like supply chain management, acquisition and sustainment, or policy analysis. The leaders of those functional lines of business led high-performing teams and did not necessarily have time to uncover opportunities for innovation and combine the right resources to create new solutions for the market. LMI made a huge leap forward last year when we stood up the Forge™, our rapid prototyping and agile development team. The Forge™ explores the art of the possible with our customers and our internal experts, moving toward a viable solution faster than any comparable group I have ever seen. The LTX team has a symbiotic relationship with the Forge™—our direct customer experience sets the strategy for where LMI wants to go as a digitally powered logistics company and the Forge™ helps us make that a reality.

What is LogSmart™ and what makes it different than other digital solutions in the marketplace today?

Our customers struggle to assess and integrate digital solutions in their daily work. They know the huge potential but are overwhelmed with vendors offering proprietary tools and widgets that may or may not solve their highest priority challenges. LogSmart™ is a suite of applications aligned to the unique missions and contexts of government logistics with applications targeted at optimizing fleet operations and maintenance, maximizing supply chain resiliency, improving the acquisition process, and more. We add new LogSmart™ applications based on the strong demand in the market for the union of LMI’s digital and logistics expertise.

LMI developed LogSmart™ to show our customers how to integrate advanced analytics into their logistics operations rapidly without buying proprietary, black box solutions from commercial vendors. In many cases, our customers make meaningful progress starting with the data and the IT environments they already have. For example, in the Department of Defense’s Advana environment, the data sources, data science libraries, and visualization capabilities are powerful enough to create powerful predictive maintenance and fleet management tools that could compete with offerings from Silicon Valley startups. All that is required is a team with the right combination of logistics understanding, analytics and modeling capabilities, and agile development knowledge to deliver it. Our LogSmart™ fleet solution leverages these tools in a repeatable and proven way to deliver actionable insights without integrating more software or paying ongoing license costs.

Another distinguisher for LogSmart™ is our heavy focus on delivering prescriptive, actionable information to users based on each organization’s unique requirements. Data science has advanced to where we can describe trends and predict future data points even with very little context about the world we are analyzing. Users do not need to be logistics experts to generate what, until recently, were expert-level descriptive and predictive insights. For truly prescriptive insights, however—insights that illuminate courses of action and their implications at the user level—expertise becomes key. Going from “this is happening” to “this is what you should do about it” requires a different level of familiarity with the user’s daily work, organizational objectives, policy, budgetary, and environmental constraints, etc. Our customers have trusted us for over 60 years to assess and recommend options for logistics operations. LogSmart™ solutions apply state-of-the-art digital tools to do this important work faster, repeatably, and at scale.

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LogSmart Logo with text that reads "The right logistics insights before you need them."

Why do you like working at LMI or why did you pick to work at LMI?

LMI is defined by the quality of the people and the sense of mission that informs everything we do. Those same factors that make LMI teams so great for our customers also make LMIers great colleagues: we trust each other because we all have the same underlying motivation to deliver impactful results for the federal government. There is no substitute for our alignment of values and common core beliefs about why we are here: we can react quickly, deliver results, and have fun all at the same.

Based on your experience, what makes LMI different from other government consultancies?

What sets LMI apart is the clear sense of our mission and our commitment to delivering quality and impact. This shows in the work we do for our customers but also in what we decide not to do. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve reviewed opportunities to do meaningful work, but the government has structured the contract such that we cannot deliver what the customer needs to our exacting LMI standard, so we decided to pass. The LMI mission means something because we hold ourselves to the same high standard on projects with 200 consultants and projects with two consultants—it goes against our core principles to do less than our best. I’m eager to combine that commitment and excellent service delivery with our digital expertise to create LMI-worthy, data-driven solutions for our customers.

What has been the most impactful project you have supported while working at LMI?

Building the LTX team is the most exciting thing I’ve done at LMI, and I expect it to be the most impactful, as well, for the company and, more importantly, for our customers.

What’s the part of your job that makes you excited to come to work every day?

This is the second time in my career that I’ve ended up in the role of lead intrapreneur, building a startup inside a well-established company. It’s what I really love to do: starting with a big and ambiguous opportunity, figuring out where to start, bringing great talent to the team, and making things happen.

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