THE COHORT PROGRAM
New thinking. More collaboration. Better results. That’s the recipe for Army modernization, and we’re helping lead the way through our Cohort Program — the first of its kind for the U.S. military and unlike any other program in the market.
About the Cohort Program
Cohorts are playing an increasing role in startup communities around the world. They offer a way for companies to improve their outcomes by tapping the learning and connections of an accelerator partner. In exchange, cohort members are usually asked to share a piece of their profit.
We decided to put a twist on that concept for the U.S. Army. Our Cohort Program is similar to an accelerator, similar to a hackathon, similar to traditional acquisitions, but none of those things by itself. It brings together a group of companies that don’t usually work with the DoD and focuses them on solving a specific Army problem. They work side by side with Soldiers and with a community of Army experts and stakeholders on a shared learning journey.
MEET THE FIRE FASTER COHORT:
THE FIRST COHORT IN THE SPARTN PROGRAM
These 15 companies were selected to solve the first problem released through the Army’s new SPARTN program, Fire Faster. As part of that opportunity, they were also invited to join the Fire Faster Cohort for greater access to Army stakeholders and end users and for deeper insight into the problem they’re working to solve.
How It Works
Every cohort through AAL is different, because every problem is unique. We work with Army clients to gain deeper insight into their problems and co-develop a tailored program with their goals in mind. But each cohort shares two things — a focus on working with the best solvers and a commitment to solutions that can transition and scale.
Our cohorts aren’t focused on making one widget or bound by rigid requirements. We work on dissecting and solving complex operational problems for the Army.
No one thrives in a vacuum. So we bring Army clients and cohort members together throughout the program to share insight and solve the problem as a team.
By including Army program managers throughout the design process, we deliver realistic solutions while reducing risks to cost, schedule, and performance.
Rather than spending millions on one solution that may not work, we validate new ideas that can solve multiple problems and scale into other dual-use solutions.
OUR FIRST COHORT:
FIELD ARTILLERY AUTONOMOUS RESUPPLY (FAAR)
To win in a Multi-Domain Operations environment, the Army knew it needed field artillery to fire farther and faster than ever before. The Extended Range Cannon Artillery (ERCA) program was part of the answer. But, as the Long Range Precision Fires Cross Functional Team (LRPF CFT) dug into the CONOPS, they realized that solving one problem led to another: Once you build a bigger, better cannon, how do you get the right ammunition to the right place at the right time?
The commercial industry has driven incredible advancements with automation and robotics, so LRPF partnered with the AAL team to tap some of that thinking through the FAAR Cohort. The cohort worked alongside stakeholders to explore how best-in-class commercial tech could help address this challenge — and how the Army could quickly identify and work to incorporate those technologies.
In just 12 weeks, the six companies in the FAAR Cohort co-designed and presented 14 new solution concepts that could enhance the ERCA resupply process. Watch it unfold in our docuseries that goes behind the scenes the first cohort.
The Cohort Program is just one of the ways that we’re supporting Army modernization by challenging why and delivering what if.
Whether you’re a small business interested in joining our next cohort or an Army leader interested in funding a new cohort, we’re ready to talk. Together, we can unite the best commercial thinking and technology to transform the Army.