Approval to merge all IDC communities

Approval to merge all IDC communities

Postby telowery » Sun Apr 15, 2012 9:57 pm

From an email I received today....


Admirals,

I briefed CNO today on the IDC War-fighting Effectiveness Way Ahead. He
approved all Step 1 actions on Slide 4 of the attached brief which includes
implementation of a single IDC competitive category, a NAVMAC study to
identify and validate IDC work across the Navy, and an accessions plan to
support a potentially broader billet base. He whole heartedly endorsed our
efforts to mainstream Information Dominance as a War-fighting Pillar. He is
not convinced, however, that the IDC needs to move into the URL to achieve
this goal--we will re-evaluate this initiative (every six months or so) as we
move forward.

I am committed to completing all the Step 1 actions and will seek your
continued support in moving all of these objectives forward as rapidly as
possible. While significant work remains; I am encouraged we are headed in
the right direction with the right purpose and certainly appreciate your
efforts in helping move our Navy smartly into the information age.
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Postby telowery » Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:00 pm

From the brief....

Step one: Complete the transition of four communities into a
more effective warfighting Community.


[B]Step One Actions
Complete the transition
[/B]

Complete:
 ID Warfare Qualifications
 Consolidated IDC Detailers & Community Managers
 Single Designator Series (18xx)
 Command & Milestone Billets/Numbers Identified
 ID & CYBER Advanced Education (CMU, NPS)

Near Term (2012 – 2013):
 Common Administrative Screen Boards
 Career Paths Aligned
 Senior/Mid-career/Accessions Education
 Identify and validate IDC work across the Navy – NAVMAC Study
 CYBER Zero Based Review
 Single Flag IDC Statutory Board (O7 & O8)
 IDC Organization Development Afloat Concept/Experimentation/Evaluation
Mid term (2013-2014+):
 Single IDC Competitive Category (FITREPs then Promotion Boards)
 Align Validated Fleet IDC Work by Designator – start fill transition
 ID Operational Capability (ROC) & Projected Operational Environment (POE)
 Accessions plan to support billet base
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Postby Sum1 » Sun Apr 15, 2012 11:19 pm

Saw this last week. It has just enough business-speak to make the true implications a little vague, but my first impression was it seemed to be a move towards an aviation-like model (multiple 1300-series designators, same promotion boards, but specialized skills are maintained and identified by the 3rd digit in the designator). Jobs get identified by the specific designator or the more generic "1800," which would flag it as "any IDC." Further delineations achieved by the use of AQDs and NOBCs.

At least that's how I imagine it'll proceed. Not really a "sky is falling" kind of event, but certainly something to keep a close eye on. The community managers are going to be busy across the IDC, though! I really see this as the next step to more closely align the various IDC communities to reduce redundant skill-sets and foster some sort of single community collaborative model.
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Postby Wolfpack » Mon Apr 16, 2012 3:53 am

Sum1 wrote:Jobs get identified by the specific designator or the more generic "1800," which would flag it as "any IDC."


to avoid any confusion, 1800 is Oceanography, where as 1850 is any IDC qualified officer.
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Postby O-4's hate me » Mon Apr 16, 2012 4:35 am

telowery wrote:Mid term (2013-2014+):
 Single IDC Competitive Category (FITREPs then Promotion Boards)


How do we maintain community strength across all designators if one designator proves more competitive in promotion boards? I'm sure the URLs have it figured out, I just never paid much attention to it.
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Postby yoshi » Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:09 pm

Don't believe the URLs have figured out how to avoid some designators being more special than others. Otherwise, helo/P3 pilots would be on par with jet pilots when it comes to flag numbers and command opportunities. Unless, of, course, you buy the idea that a disproportionate number of the best officers in aviation somehow always wind up going to jets.

This particular move is interesting. I don't believe it is related in any way to making IDC skills beter or improving the job we do. The origin of each of our communities generated from a demand signal requiring skills so specialized they were outside the capability of the URL communities. We were cretated to fill that niche and doing so is why we are all restricted line. Perhaps things have changed and now we are more in the spotlight than previously. Still, I don't see how what we do is any different than what we were created to in the first place. In the end, we are supporting a URL commander, not actually serving as the commander making decisions. And no, I'm talking about the CWC construct. There is not one IWC in the Navy who has ever decided to conduct their versoin of warfare. That job is the URL. So, we will remain restricted line and probably rightsully so. Since we are restricted line, designed and formed to present and maintain specific skills sets, we owe it to the Navy to be as good at those core skills as we possibly can be.

Currently, an IW JO is able to serve in a "real IW" type billet about every other billet, on average. As IDC merges, now there are other billet "opportunities" and requirements to consider. At some point, there will be "milestones" to reflect the comunities' contribution to the IDc and to assuage personality conflict. This means the JO will now go from serving every other billet in one specialty area (IW, Intel, IP, METOC) to serving maybe once out of 4 tours, thereby weakening experience and expertise in every area. As these officers mature through a one size fits all system, how can we believe their level of competence will match that possessed by those officers currently serving in today's system? This seems a particularly pressing question now, given the crumbling technical knowledge base of both our officer and enlisted communities. I personally believe this is a huge step back for the competence level of our wardroom, not nonecessarilyw, but down the road. This said, it should be very good for the career side of things for most JOs today and I'm sure it will help the manning and numbers folks a great deal, which is likely why the scales have tipped in favor of this move. I just want to make sure someone points out the concept that it will hurt technical competence and ultimately undermine the efficiency and quality of each specific effort (IW/Intel/METOC/IP), just as it happened in each of the other services. We have discussed this thing forever (pages and pages over the last 3 years on this site are dedicated to one IDC community and the URL topic), though, and its time to get onboard or get out.
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Postby Sum1 » Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:58 pm

Wolfpack wrote:to avoid any confusion, 1800 is Oceanography, where as 1850 is any IDC qualified officer.


Thanks for the correction! I would try to make some generic excuse, but reality is I was underinformed (my own doing).

yoshi wrote:This particular move is interesting. I don't believe it is related in any way to making IDC skills beter or improving the job we do. The origin of each of our communities derived from a demand signal requiring skills so specialized they were outside the capability of the URL communities. We were cretated to fill that niche and doing so is why we are all restricted line. Perhaps things have changed and now we are more in the spotlight than previously. Still, I don't see how what we do is any different than what we were created to in the first place. In the end, we are supporting a URL commander, not actually serving as the commander making decisions. And no, I'm talking about the CWC construct. There is not one IWC in the Navy who has ever decided to conduct their versoin of warfare. That job is the URL. So, we will remain restricted line and probably rightsully so. Since we are restricted line, designed and formed to present and maintain specific skills sets, we owe it to the Navy to be as good at those core skills as we possibly can be.

Currently, a an IW JO is able to serve in a "real IW" type billet about every other billet, on average. As IDC merges, now there are other billet "opportunities" and requruiements to consider. At some point, there will be "milestones" to reflect each comunities' contribution to the IDc and to assuage flag resentment. These means the JO will now go from serving every other billet in one specialty area (IW, Intel, IP, METOC) to serving maybe once out of 4 tours. As these officers mature in a one size fits all system, how can we believe their level of comptetence will match that possessed by those officers currently serving in today's system? This seems a particularly pressing question now, given the crumbling technical knowledge base of both our officer and enlisted communities. I personally believe this is a huge step back for the competence level of our wardroom, not now, but down the road. This said, it seems to be very good for the career side of things for most JOs today. Also, I'm sure it will help the manning and numbers folks a great deal, which is I'm sure why the scales have tipped in favor of this move. I just want to make sure someone points out the idea that it will hurt technical competence and ultimately undermine the efficiency and quality of our effort. We have discussed this thing forever (pages and pages over the last 3 years on this site are dedicated to one IDC community and the URL topic), though, and its time to get onboard or get out.


I'm not sure I agree that this move would be all bad or that IW officers would become the IDC's version of helo/P3 pilots (P3 pilots stationed in sweet areas and never deploying on ships are pained everywhere at the comparison). These efforts appear to have two potentially huge advantages:

1) Cost savings as we remove duplicate effort and redundant expertise.
2) As we refocus on the things that make us special as a community we can promote an environment where we dive deeper into the technical aspects of the job than we necessarily do now.

I suppose the biggest concern I'd have is there are already flavors or swim lanes forming within the IW community. The question of how someone who's built a fleet-track career progression compares with a cyber-track person within the IW community now becomes much more broad as we add the rest of the IDC into the picture. Is this initial ambiguity enough to offset the potential advantages? I bet it's not.
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Postby Wolfpack » Mon Apr 16, 2012 5:05 pm

yoshi wrote:This particular move is interesting. I don't believe it is related in any way to making IDC skills beter or improving the job we do. The origin of each of our communities generated from a demand signal requiring skills so specialized they were outside the capability of the URL communities. We were cretated to fill that niche and doing so is why we are all restricted line.
In the end, we are supporting a URL commander, not actually serving as the commander making decisions. And no, I'm talking about the CWC construct. There is not one IWC in the Navy who has ever decided to conduct their versoin of warfare. That job is the URL. So, we will remain restricted line and probably rightsully so. Since we are restricted line, designed and formed to present and maintain specific skills sets, we owe it to the Navy to be as good at those core skills as we possibly can be.
I just want to make sure someone points out the concept that it will hurt technical competence and ultimately undermine the efficiency and quality of each specific effort (IW/Intel/METOC/IP), just as it happened in each of the other services. We have discussed this thing forever (pages and pages over the last 3 years on this site are dedicated to one IDC community and the URL topic), though, and its time to get onboard or get out.

If we all go to one competitive category, selection is based on how well the individual is doing his/her job. Then, at the board, the top across the IDC will be picked. Look at the recent O6 selection ? 5 IW and 10 Intel ? what if the Number 6 IW is better than the number 8 Intel, the right thing for the IDC is that the IW get selected. Of course, there are issues that need to be addressed, such as how does the IDC make sure it promotes enough officers to fill its requirements (i.e. if you select two more IW at the expense of the OCEANO community, how much of an impact is that for OCEANO ? huge). I am encouraged that this is in the FY13-14+ category, not the FY12-23 category.

Regarding the IWC not conducting their own version of warfare, there is no reason that the IWC cannot be the supported versus supporting commander. The IDC of last year is NOT the IDC of the future. The IDC needs to further mature Info Dominance as a warfare area, than it can sit at the table with the other warfare commanders and participate as an equal in war fighting, regardless of URL or not.

I don?t understand why a single competitive category will hurt the technical competency and undermined the efficiency and quality of the communities. You will be evaluated on how well you do as an IW officer in your jobs, as will everyone else. I did not see anything on the list that suggests that the IDC is getting rid of the individual communities. They all have specific requirements, and they all also have strong complementary relationships w/ the other communities in the IDC.

I like how the brief looks forward and realizes that the IDC of today is really the same organizations that existed before the IDC was stood up. The structure needs to change to realize its full potential.
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Postby yoshi » Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:22 pm

Sum1 -
1) Fist, I don't believe cost savings are a defineable benefit where competence and acumen are involved. You get what you pay for. Why do we have specialized doctors and engineers when it would be cheaper to merge them into larger, more general groups? Second, where is the duplicate effort and redundant expertise in these communities? I know I don't know jack crap about how to be a METOC officer, IP, or Intel. Maybe I'm just not that good. I don't see any redundancy between these communities, excpet for perhaps at some staff commands. 2) What makes the IDC community special (if we are competing for promotion and billet opportunities, we are one community, not four). What would the IDC make its focus and purpose? Whatever the answer, in order to incorporate all aspects of IDC into one community, the result would necessarily be broader and less specific than it is now. You can't dive deeper if you have less oxygen (time available) and more places to see (billets).

Finally, I believe the "initial ambiguity" you describe below is more accurately captured as "don't have a freaking clue". Frankly, there is no track model for officers to follow. There never was, and the move to IDC as one community pretty much ensures all ideas of certain career tracks inside of each individual community as they exist now are finished. That would be way too narrow a focus to be of benefit to the larger IDC, and it would be against the idea of bringing well-rounded experience to the leadeship of the IDC.

Wolfpack -
I agree - the IDC should notionally be a potential benefit to the careers of many quality. However, in order for all of the IDC's mainstay efforts to be represented and properly maintained, IDC leadership must have a solid understanding and broad experience level. So, at some point, the jobs people hold becomes as important as their level of quality. Also, can anyone tell me how we measure our quality people? It isn't FITREPs, we all know that. Again, it should be good for the savvy IW officer and for those who have a clue. Its interesting to see the way you feel about FY12-13 versus 13-14. I actually believe they should do it as soon as possible. I mean, if we are going to do it, let's get it on. If it takes us two years to figure the how and why, we obviously don't have a clue how we should proceed. The question which then presents itself to all sage people is then: why did we decide to do this without a defined way forward? The answer isn't very flattering.

Supported versus supporting-
You're right, an IDC person (or a Human Resources peron, or anyone, really) could theoretically be a supported warfare commander, except that as long as you are restricted line, you won't be. That's the way it is. To my knowledge, no one has officially made the case to the URL community defining why we need that authority to execute our assigned mission. Our fleet mission is to provide I&W and answer the Commander's PIRs. So, who is supporting who is abundantly clear. Personally, before we levy 20 JOs to figure out how to make the case for being supported, I would prefer we tackle the tougher issues of figuring out why our SSES divos can't get their kids to the F schools, why the CRCs and staffs don't hammer them in message traffic about, why CID isn't fixed to accomodate the needed throughput, and why we can't seem to figure out the roles and responsibilities for our organizations. It kind of pisses me off that we put off fixing problems such these in favor of chasing some URL pipe dream. I got no problem being URL, but for Christ sake's, be realistic. I've had this conversation with a few folks before, and it seems pretty much divided between C10f folks and folks with multiple sea tours. If we are on a platform that is ordered to move somewhere in order to accomodate what we do, we believe we are being supported. The URL reality is that what we would do in such a situation is their mission, and they are charged with executing it with their personnel (us). Anyone who has written a BMR can tell you what name goes in the From line. Its not the IW Officer's organization. Why does information dominance need to further mature into a "warfare area"? We, as the IW community, don't even have our own NTAs - we have to borrow Intel's and cram anything new under EW. Let's get ourselves figured out and the basics fixed; then we can worry about what beastly warfighters we are.

I am under the assumption IDC will be one comunity, particuarly as we will be competing in one category and for the same billets. Not sure how else it could be defined. If others are of a different opinion regarding a loss of techincal competence, this is a non-starter and not really worth discussing. Maybe a few pointed questions about SIGINT/CYBER to the next Army officer you meet (other than those at the mothership) would change some opinions.
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Postby Wolfpack » Tue Apr 17, 2012 1:18 pm

Yoshi,
Some interesting point, but one thing that jumps out is that if anyone is looking at the IDC and OPNAV to fix any issues within the IW community or any of the other communities, it is a recipe for disaster. The IW senior officers need to be the ones to adjust within the IW community, not some staff in DC or a conglomeration of officers from across the IDC.
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