2 April 2012 IW Board

Postby Arkad » Sun Mar 04, 2012 2:41 am

I am a proud attrite, and would love to have had the opportunity to choose IW at USNA. Unfortunately (I say in jest), nothing was physically wrong with me, so I didn't have the option. Though we welcome many great OCS grads to our team each year, I would say that more OCS is not the answer. Part of the answer, maybe. But definitely not THE answer.
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Postby Sum1 » Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:19 am

Arkad wrote:Though we welcome many great OCS grads to our team each year, I would say that more OCS is not the answer. Part of the answer, maybe. But definitely not THE answer.


If I may be so bold as to ask... "To what question?"

As an OCS grad (and former enlisted) myself, and current contributor to forums that help civilian and military applicants apply to OCS, I've seen a marked draw down in opportunities. I understand that OCS exists as a means to bolster numbers when USNA and NROTC fall short, but to the RL communities it represents something more significant. It's tough for me to explain to hopefuls that a likely reason why their package, which would have been competitive a year ago, is suddenly not competitive anymore is because of decreased opportunities for OCS.

Again, hopefully I'm not coming across harshly to attrites and lateral transfers, because that is certainly not my intention. I simply am pondering out loud how decreased opportunities for OCS accessions across the board may affect our community and others.

Perhaps the IW community needs an officer or two at USNA as a company officer to show the mids what it's like to be at the pointy end of the spear. I'll take the bullet and be the first!
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Postby Arkad » Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:28 pm

Sum1 wrote:If I may be so bold as to ask... "To what question?"


The question is: How we go about getting more ENSs?

Sum1 wrote:It's tough for me to explain to hopefuls that a likely reason why their package, which would have been competitive a year ago, is suddenly not competitive anymore is because of decreased opportunities for OCS.


Opportunities continue to decrease across the board. We just have a higher percentage of our accessions come via OCS, which makes our OCS cuts very visible. Diversity of accession sources helps us to enjoy greater experiential diversity, as well as diversity of thought. I just hope we learn to accept that each commissioning source has great value and there is not one that is any better than the other. We have had more than a few prior enlisted CTs who became Officers via OCS, USNA, NROTC, and STA-21 who could not service select IW. Through URL training attrition they were able to come back home to where most wanted to be from the beginning. Attrition happens for many reasons, so we need not question their (our) path.

Sum1 wrote:Again, hopefully I'm not coming across harshly to attrites and lateral transfers, because that is certainly not my intention. I simply am pondering out loud how decreased opportunities for OCS accessions across the board may affect our community and others.


Thinking out loud is great. You are not the only one having these thoughts, so by voicing them others get their questions answered or come up with others. Conversation is good!

Sum1 wrote:Perhaps the IW community needs an officer or two at USNA as a company officer to show the mids what it's like to be at the pointy end of the spear. I'll take the bullet and be the first!


We now have presence on The Yard and the Brigade is more aware than ever about what it is we do. We do not have a shortage of people who want to join our wardroom, we have a over constraints that our "Friends in Millington" and Community/Corps Leadership continue to address. Accession Planning might be another good topic for a future OCM video?!?!
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2 April 2012 IW Board

Postby IW OCM » Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:53 pm

The mix and quantity of officers brought into the IW community each year is largely dictated by the "Macro-level" Big Navy constraints and restraints placed on the annual Accession Plan, and less so by value-statements that the IW Community has placed on a particular accession source (i.e. USNA over NROTC over OCS over Lat Txfr). Don?t read too much into it ? just like the promotion plan ? a lot of this stuff just comes down to the math to arrive at the number that we?ve been given. In the case of FY12, the Navy was given the total number of 3990 ? OPNAV N1 had to find a way to distribute that number between all the communities, given each community?s requirements and each accession sources? constraints.

The number of officers that the IW Community brings in each year is based on funded Fleet requirements; the number of billets that are paid for and the rate at which we need to fill them each year. Most communities do not get allotted their full requirement each year (because the Navy cannot afford to), which will eventually lead to the need for lateral gains (attrites and lateral transfers) down the road. If we ?hired? the number we needed each year, there would be less need for lateral gains.

There are two ?halves? of the accession plan. The ?left hand? side of the accession plan deals with Direct Accessions like USNA, STA-21, NROTC, OCS, Reserve Recall, etc. Each accession source has a total goal for all officers, and that total is broken down by each community. Some sources (like USNA) have restrictions on how many officers can go directly to the RL/Staff. USNA might have low direct accession numbers for IW, but that?s not because IW isn?t valued, it?s because the URL communities depend on that accession source for the bulk of their accessions. Also, the IW Community?s annual requirement for ENS? is much less than the URL. USNA also has a physical qualification constraint (i.e. must be NPQ to go direct to the RL/Staff).

The ?right hand? side of the Accession Plan deals with lateral gains. Again, the numbers of officers gained via this source does not represent a subjective value judgment versus Direct Accessions ? it again comes down to math. Lateral Gains are used to supplement shortages that are present in the community due to not being able to bring in enough Direct Accessions, or to make up for losses (resignations, etc). These officers are already ?on the books? (paid for) so to speak ? and are broken down further into Attrites and Lateral Transfers?two different processes.

Training attrites (e.g. ?fallen angels?, BUD/S, etc) with less than 6 years of active commissioned service are reviewed at a monthly Probationary Officer Continuation and Redesignation (POCR) board. The Navy is allowed to keep a certain percentage of these officers each fiscal year. Each community is allotted a certain number of picks each fiscal year, which is typically sub-divided into a certain number of picks each month. That?s it in a nutshell.

Most are somewhat familiar with the semi-annual Lateral Transfer Redesignation board, but there is enough nuance there also that I am hoping to produce a short video soon. For the IW Community specifically, the need is for brand-new LT?s ? we?re overmanned at O-4 thru O-6, so no intent to open quotas there in the near term.

Call if you crave more regarding accessions. I hope this helps.

V/r,
IW OCM
901-874-3123
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Postby Sum1 » Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:34 am

Thanks to the IW OCM for that great explanation.

I fully appreciate the variety of experiences that each new (or newly IW) Sailor brings to our community, regardless of his or her commissioning source. I think IW OCM's explanation came as close as I've ever seen to laying out the particular reasons why if we need to have 50 new ensigns, only 18 come from Direct Accession and 32 from attrites rather than 30 Direct Accession and 20 attrites (for example... numbers made up).
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