New PCS program puts customers in driver's seat
May 26, 2009
SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. - With nearly 200,000 Permanent Change of Station (PCS) moves expected in the approaching season, it is important for Department of Defense personnel to note several broad changes to the personal property shipment process.
The uniformed services began using the Defense Personal Property System (DPS) to move DOD personal property Nov. 19, 2008. DPS is the system that drives the new Defense Personal Property Program (DP3), formerly known as 'Families First.'
"The more a servicemember or DOD civilian knows about the new program, the better their move will be. DP3 and DPS really put them in the driver's seat," said Lt. Col. Daniel Bradley, deputy chief of staff for Personal Property at SDDC. "It allows them to manage, hands-on, their personal property move with improved information and access."
DPS provides the capability to self-counsel on-line from any computer with internet access around the clock, seven days a week. Once PCS orders are in hand, members can estimate their household goods weight, enter relevant information, request pick-up and delivery dates, and let their prospective mover know of unique items that require special attention, all without going to a transportation office. Once their move is complete, they can file claims for damaged or missing items on-line as well.
A significant feature of the program is that servicemembers have a direct voice in determining the quality of movers they and their fellow servicemembers receive. DPS captures the customer's assessment of the move in a short 12-question evaluation called the Customer Satisfaction Survey (CSS). The evaluation scores are used to rank moving companies, awarding top performing companies with more shipments.
"The CSS is a critical piece of the program, and it requires participation," said Bradley. "The only way we can expect an improved program in the future is if servicemembers complete this evaluation for all moves."
Prior to beginning any household goods self-counseling in DPS, members should contact their Personal Property Shipping Office to determine if the type of shipment they have is eligible for movement in DPS.
There are computer system requirements to access DPS. A list of these requirements can be found on the front page of www.move.mil.
"DP3 represents a new era of household goods movement for the DOD," said Bradley. "Because each move is unique, DP3 gives the customer the opportunity to work more directly with the moving company than the previous personal property program to establish what each member needs."
More information can be found at www.move.mil under "DOD Customer."