By Nathan Pfau, Army Flier Staff WriterJune 13, 2014
FORT RUCKER, Ala. (June 13, 2014) -- When it comes to winning awards, Fort Rucker is no stranger to the feat, and the installation's Network Enterprise Center continues that commitment to excellence with its most recent win.
The Fort Rucker NEC earned the medium-level NEC of the Year for the 93rd Signal Brigade, which encompasses nearly all medium-level installations on the eastern side of the U.S., according to Tom Barrett, NEC director.
Winning the award wasn't easy and was the result of the collective effort of team members who work to create one seamless unit, said the director.
"We are one cohesive team and we try not to have any barriers within our own team or to our customers to help that effort," he said. "Winning the award is validation that we're doing the right things at the right time. Our most important service is for our customers, so it's good to know that our customers are getting world-class service."
Sharon Storti, NEC information technology specialist, agreed and added that the Fort Rucker NEC's strong teamwork is what drives the organization to push forward.
"I think it's the overall ability for us to work together and solve a lot of the problems that come our way," she said. "A lot of things get pushed down at the NEC level, and once it gets down to our level, we work hard to find the solutions to solve a lot of the problems."
The NEC serves to provide all baseline telecommunications, information assurance and automation services for the entire installation. It's in that area of expertise that nominees for the award are graded, according to Barrett.
"Each installation NEC submits a packet that goes to the (93rd Signal Brigade) and those packets then go to a board. (Then) each board member rates them," said the NEC director. "The output of the boards will then go to the brigade commander who makes the final selection for the award."
There are three separate categories: large, medium and small, all according to installation size. Fort Rucker, along with most installations in the U.S., falls under the medium category.
Within those separate categories, installations are graded in seven different criteria ranging from progressing toward a global network enterprise and state, to innovative solutions, two categories that Fort Rucker excels at, said Rita Guilmette, NEC chief of business and plans division.
"A lot of times other installations will come to us for help and ideas with a lot of the problems they have," she said. "If we find a solution to a problem or a better way to do something, many installations will come to us and ask us how we did that, so that they can implement the process at their installations."
"We try to be innovative and figure out different ways of doing things, so we help out quite a few installations when it comes to that," added Storti. "Once we have a successful test added and we show other installations how we implemented the program, we'll even go on to try and see if we can make it work Army wide from there."
Barrett said winning awards is not something the team strives for, but what they strive for is excellence in the service they provide.
"This just confirms the decisions we make day in and day out as it relates to our team and helps us know that those are good decisions," he said. "It's all about the customer and knowing that we provide that excellent service for them."
"I think winning this award helps to motivate us to do even better," added Storti. "Achieving the award instills a lot of pride -- knowing that you work for an organization that excels in everything that is put in front of them."