army readiness regulation

Search: View Section 508 Version. Rather than empowering them to “subjectively upgrade” overall readiness ratings (as AR 220-1 does now), which obscures rather than resolves metric fixation, reporting units ought have a larger role in the selection of what metrics capture readiness on the ground.22, Figure 3. 3. But because pacers enjoy disproportionate weight in the USR, any self-interested battalion prioritizes the maintenance of the twentieth pacer over the first command-and-control truck. This is understandable given the size of the force and the degrees of separation between everyday training and TRADOC. Even worse, units will not turn in irreparably broken equipment (a process known as “coding out”) for fear that the loss will drop them below the MTOE-prescribed quantity, opting to retain unserviceable property and thereby precluding the fielding or even requisition of a functioning replacement. (Photo courtesy of J. VanDomelen, https://blogs.mentor.com/jvandomelen/blog/2011/12/28/power-problem-what-now/), From March 2018 to November 2019, the Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General conducted an audit of the U.S. Army’s active component readiness. It establishes procedures for conducting a Soldier Readiness Program (S RP), in order to process soldiers and Department of the Army civilians for deployments/movements under the SRP. readiness in accordance with the requirements stipulated in Army Regulation (AR) 220-1 (Army Unit Status Reporting and Force Registration - Consolidated Policies), and the Leader’s Guide to Objective Assessment of Training Proficiency.17 The Army G-3/5/7 published the Leader's Guide in 2017 as the interim authority for CUSR Objective T- The effects of those flaws are twofold: USRs not only fail to capture the readiness of reporting units, but they also actually harm the readiness of reporting units. This regulation prescribes the purpose, policies, procedures, and responsi- bilities for planning, preparing, executing, and assessing Army Strategic and Opera- tional Readiness. The top priority for Army leadership is readiness. The Army Regulation that governs all Soldier and Family Readiness Group operations is Army Regulation 608-1, Appendix J. Short-termism. Dear Editor, When Soldiers transport small arms to the shop for maintenance, they need to follow the guidance in AR 190-11, Physical Security of Arms Ammunition, and Explosives (Jan 19). Publication Number: AE REG 600-8-101 Publication Date: 6/9/2008 Title: Army in Europe Soldier Readiness Program Status: CURRENT Unit of Issue (U/I): WEB Security Classification: Agency: USAREUR Proponent: Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G1 Prop Office Symbol: PIN: 1000325 Web Footnote: Authorization for Obsolescence: 6/9/2008 This sanitized approach obfuscates the manipulation that can and does occur to ensure these basic fractions yield figures between .9 and 1.00. The resultant amalgam of definitions cripples the military bureaucracy’s ability to manage. Such cannibalized vehicles or other pieces of equipment are sometimes used to skew unit readiness reporting requirements and mask unit logistical and materiel deficiencies. David Barno and Nora Bensahel, “Three Things the Army Chief of Staff Wants You to Know,” War on the Rocks, 23 May 2017, accessed 3 June 2020, Paul Yingling, “A Failure in Generalship,”, George F. Kennan, “America’s Administrative Response to Its World Problems,”. Army mobilization is the process of bringing the Army to a state of readiness for war, contingency, or national emergency. Amidst all this short-termism, “recovery” becomes something of a four-letter word. Theo Lipsky, U.S. Army, is a student at the Maneuver Captains Career Course at Fort Benning, Georgia. This approach enjoys the dual advantages of preempting the defensiveness Wong and Gerras encountered and more credibly promising results. 10 U.S.C. The numerator is what appears on the unit’s property books; it is a digital record of equipment existent for that unit.8, The denominator for equipment readiness is what is on hand, and the numerator is the quantity tracked as “fully mission capable” in the Army’s digital maintenance records. How to negotiate a balance between the dual risks of harmful standardization and unmanageable chaos is explored deeply in the book Seeing Like a State by James C. Scott. The commanders and staff chase readiness as the USR measures it, often at the cost of actual readiness. Recall that S-level measures what equipment units have on hand against what the MTOE dictates they should have. Across all types of equipment, leadership rushes repair jobs or seeks out the easiest fix, undermining long-term serviceability and sometimes further damaging the equipment in the process. Ready and Resilient (R2) is the Army's strategy for strengthening individual and unit Personal Readiness and fostering a culture of trust. Commander’s Unit Status Report Metrics (Figure from Army Regulation 220-1, Army Unit Status Reporting and Force Registration—Consolidated Policies, 15 April 2010, https://armypubs.army.mil/epubs/DR_pubs/DR_a/pdf/web/r220_1.pdf) Army Readiness Guidance 2016-2017; Army Regulation 525-30, Army Strategic Readiness; Related STAND-TO! 1 The reports do so because they demand inflexible quantitative measurements unfaithful to the outcome they purport to depict—how ready a unit is to accomplish its mission. Only strict standardization renders the force legible, whether to the Pentagon or to Congress. According to The Army Strategy, the Army projects that it will reach its readiness goals by 2022, at which point its priority is expected to shift to modernization. Large-Scale Combat Operations Book Set Call for Papers, New Extended Battlefield - Multi-Domain Operations, Battles of the Korean War Virtual Staff Rides, Army Historian - Additional Skill Identifier 5X, https://blogs.mentor.com/jvandomelen/blog/2011/12/28/power-problem-what-now/, https://armypubs.army.mil/epubs/DR_pubs/DR_a/pdf/web/r220_1.pdf, https://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pubs/research_reports/RR2900/RR2979/RAND_RR2979.pdf, https://media.defense.gov/2019/Nov/20/2002214021/-1/-1/1/DODIG-2020-028.PDF, https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/USCODE-2011-title10/html/USCODE-2011-title10-subtitleA-partI-chap2-sec117.htm, https://www.gao.gov/assets/680/679556.pdf, https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/696780.pdf, https://dod.defense.gov/Portals/1/Documents/pubs/2018-National-Defense-Strategy-Summary.pdf, https://www.armyupress.army.mil/Journals/Military-Review/English-Edition-Archives/July-August-2019/Townsend-command-control/, https://warontherocks.com/2017/05/three-things-the-army-chief-of-staff-wants-you-to-know/, http://armedforcesjournal.com/a-failure-in-generalship/, https://publications.armywarcollege.edu/pubs/2321.pdf. This reporting labyrinth obscures what anyone who has compiled a USR knows: unit status reports are deeply flawed. Antiquated encryption tape readers remain while desperately needed high frequency radios or infrared optics disappear. It is not because of the individual but rather because of the devaluation of the individual that such perversions of organizational behavior occur. Those leaders would certainly tolerate more programmatic maintenance. Mission. Lastly, least measurable (and therefore, from a metric-intensive perspective, least credible) but just as tragic is what Muller calls the degradation of the work. Extending command timelines would force a consideration of long-term effects that are otherwise a problem for the anonymous successor. These materials were developed based on Army regulation and guidance, and research on separation and combat deployments. There is no great advantage to monthly reports but many costs, only some of which have been discussed. Military Operations . Decreasing the frequency of USRs to a biannual or even annual iterations would also assuage many of its ill effects. 2. This regulation applies to all directorates, special staff sections, major subordinate commands, tenants, and A leader with more time in the driver’s seat similarly plans for the longer term. It is the work of real readiness. According to regulation, for a piece of equipment to be fully mission capable, it must pass a “preventative maintenance checks and services” inspection without failing a single “not ready if” bullet. Figure 2. Company commanders reported in a 2019 RAND study that they devoted a full 15 percent of their time to “tracking readiness,” second only to USR-adjacent “equipment maintenance and accountability.” Both outstripped the 13 percent of each quarter commanders professed dedicating to “unit-specific training.” Ironically, soldiers shared that a common means of coping with the time burden was to report readiness metrics inaccurately (see figure 3).19 This spells doom for mission command’s “shared understanding,” as staffs and commanders dedicate to data’s collection and grooming the attention that mission orders desperately need. With uncanny unanimity and precision, leaders have echoed these concerns. But overall, the Army had “met or exceeded” the goal of 66 percent of its brigade combat teams (BCT) reporting the “highest readiness levels for seven consecutive quarterly reporting periods.”1. Often, under pressure to produce short-term results, commanders undermine or outright dismantle systems designed to sustain readiness in the long view because those systems do not move at the speed of the USR. SUBJECT: Equipment Readiness Code Rule System 1. The perversion of maintenance that results is a familiar story to anyone who has worked in an Army motor pool. The language unambiguously requires discrete, quantitative metrics. This signals strongly to me that these issues are unfortunately not limited to a single formation. This distrust is not lost on those soldiers, and it invites them to respond in kind. In 2011, Congress established the readiness reporting requirement and defined readiness in the first paragraph of 10 U.S.C. 2. Muller defines short-termism in The Tyranny of Metrics as “diverting resources away from their best long-term uses to achieve measured short-term goals.”14 And because USR reports recur for battalions monthly, they disrupt long-term strategies for the maintenance, acquisition, and retention of equipment in pursuit of a good monthly read. Applicability. Permitting divisions or brigades some role in the authorship of their MTOEs would better marry MTOE materiel with the needs of the unit. The U.S. Army has rewritten Field Manual 7-22, Physical Readiness Training as FM 7-22, Holistic Health and Fitness (H2F). The goal of a high S-level displaces the goal of a well-equipped unit. This way, the digital database through which parts are ordered reports only one broken tank, instead of five or six per company. Yet another painful example of goal displacement induced by USR involves what regulation calls “pacing items.” AR 220-1 defines pacing items (colloquially called “pacers”) as “major weapon systems, aircraft, and other equipment items that are central to the organization’s ability to perform its designated mission.”13 A pacer for a medical unit might be a field litter ambulance; for a cavalry squadron, it might be its anti-tank missile systems and the vehicles on which they are mounted. This practice survives because few commanders command long enough to reckon with the fall out of this behavior. Fort Leavenworth, Kansas 66027 But to understand the scope of the harm, one must first understand the desired end (in this case, readiness) and the metrics used to measure it—the USR and its components. A maintenance section in an armored formation, for example, might report only a single inoperable tank despite several others being broken. Muller has summarized the damage done by quarterly earnings “hysteria” to long-term strategy in the financial sector, and the same basic critique applies to the Army.25 Less frequent reports would permit units some actual recovery periods between training events without the disincentive of ugly USR reports. The result is an army of highly reactive, chaotic maintenance programs and duct-taped fleets. The following argument represents that single, tactical perspective on the problem, but I derive confidence in it from lengthy discussions and review with tactical and operational leaders across every type of BCT in multiple combatant commands. Meanwhile, armament sections learn not to order parts for broken machine guns until after USR reporting windows close, delaying weapons repair by months to avoid flagging them as inoperable. The system of readiness reporting dismisses individual judgment in favor of metrics so much that all agency, informed by integrity or any other Army value, dissipates. As Leonard Wong and Stephen Gerras wrote in the 2015 report Lying to Ourselves: Dishonesty in the Army Profession (from which this piece draws much), “with such a strong self-image and the reinforcing perspective of a mostly adoring American society,” Army leaders often “respond with indignation at any whiff of deceit.”20 Discussions thus falter before they begin as all retreat to their respective corners. Simply put, readiness is the capacity for the armed forces to fulfill assigned missions.3. This adverse effect of metric fixation runs precisely contrary to the stated 2018 National Defense Strategy, which emphasizes a pivot toward long-term readiness.15. Maybe some units aren’t aware of the regulation because weapons aren’t being transported the right way. Implied in the hyperquantification and rigidity of the USR is an organizational distrust of the reporting unit, and therefore the soldiers who constitute it. o Contains extensive information regarding Army Strategic Readiness and how it is reported, prepared, reviewed, and submitted (throughout). Department of Defense Inspector General (DODIG). The Army has undertaken a variety of efforts since 2016 to prepare for potential large-scale combat operations against major adversaries. Innovation aversion, time burdens, and degradation of work. Upon receipt of the repair parts, the maintenance leadership divvies them up to the many other inoperable but unreported vehicles. The purpose of recovery becomes to report it complete, and all the while, units grow weaker. This regulation provides information on medical deployment determinations and in-dividual medical readiness elements. Company Leaders’ Estimates of Personal Time Devoted Per Quarter to Job Tasks (Figure from RAND Corporation, Reducing the Time Burdens on Army Company Leaders, 2019, https://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pubs/research_reports/RR2900/RR2979/RAND_RR2979.pdf) åܛw眉?+¶œs.µƒ¡£¡ˆ: l&° ”àè #0)‚HÂccMý40A@åfbpH¿fàa`Ú¨3ÁrÚ'Ï-i ¡l÷ŸàÈáVÒ¹Á2@š‡Áñ*XœùªfX±'@€ Úlz Contact Us | 913-684-2127. This process cuts out the ordering of new parts altogether. The bedrock of Army morale—the nobility of its mission—crumbles as the mission is reduced to a series of reported fractions. “Mutual trust” fails. And all of the above empower leaders and soldiers within reporting units. The various forms of appeal, whether an “operational needs statement” or a “reclamation,” prove so cumbersome and lengthy that staffs rarely pursue them except in the direst cases. : Army Readiness Guidance; Subscribe to STAND-TO! endstream endobj 1636 0 obj <. The dearth of innovation at the top of the Army’s food chain has received due attention, perhaps most famously from former Lt. Col. Paul Yingling in a 2007 article.18 But metric fixation so deadens innovation at the tactical level that it is no surprise little rises to the level of strategy. To critique metric fixation is not, as Muller repeatedly disclaims, to protest the use of metrics altogether. To close this gap, a regular (perhaps biennial) reassessment that solicits division or even brigade input regarding what ought to be considered a pacer would make pacer OR rates more meaningful. A 2016 GAO report typifies its argument for hard numbers and the tongue-clicking that ensues when results are insufficiently quantified: “The services have not fully established metrics that the department can use to oversee readiness rebuilding efforts and evaluate progress toward achieving the identified goals.”5 Testimony from the GAO in February 2020 sustains this tone, lauding the Department of Defense’s progress as it develops “metrics to assess progress toward readiness recovery goals that include quantifiable deliverables at specific milestones [emphasis added].”6, In view of the above, Army Regulation (AR) 220-1, Army Unit Status Reporting and Force Registration—Consolidated Policies, endows the USR with an unsurprisingly quantitative structure. Pacer designation is an example. But the price of that due diligence is at times one, if not several, unfavorable USRs, and units are too often unwilling to pay. AR 525–30 Army Strategic Readiness This new Department of the Army regulation, dated 3 June 2014-- o Institutionalizes the fundamentals of Army Strategic Readiness (throughout). Lastly, lengthening the periods that commanders command to thirty-six months or longer has the potential to preempt the short-termism USRs engender. Units do so both because of the quick turnaround (one need not wait for a part to arrive from a distant depot if one rips a part off of a neighboring truck), and also because if the maintenance section need not order the part, it need not report the truck as broken, which would spare the USR.

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