Fort Knox, Ky. - Maj. Gen. Jason T. Evans, Army Human Resources Command commanding general, and HRC recently hosted E. Eric (Rick) Porter, U.S. Army Forces Command Deputy Chief of Staff, G-1 and his team for the FORSCOM G1 Manning Conference in support of Army readiness. Senior leaders met at Ft. Knox Oct. 29-Nov. 1 to focus on predictability and optimization of manning.

Other notable attendees at the conference included Lt. Gen. Thomas Seamands, Deputy Chief of Staff, G-1, U.S. Army, human resources teams from U.S. Army Pacific (USARPAC), United States European Command (EUCOM), and other command representatives from across the Army.

Created in 1973, United States Army Forces Command is the largest command in the Army and consists of more than 750,000 active, Reserve, and National Guard Soldiers. FORSCOM provides a multi domain, and globally responsive Total Army force ready to deploy, fight and win our nation's wars.

Manning, or ensuring those Soldiers are available, represents major challenges, especially as the Army grows toward an end strength of more than 500,000, with proportionate growth in the Reserve components, FORSCOM and HRC are collaborating to address those challenges and help units seek ways to improve readiness while preparing to fullfill human resource needs in the event of large scale combat operations.

Army talent management - placing the right person in the right job at the right time, remains essential at HRC. As is providing predictability and sustainability in manning cycles for commanders at the unit level.

In years prior to the Sustainable Readiness Model, as in those with ARFORGEN, units would see significant fluctuations in their numbers which impacted readiness. Today, based on unit mission needs and requirements, HRC strives to avoid any major fluctuation in troop numbers allowing commanders at the BCT level to maintain sustainable readiness.

HRC has implemented policies and procedures at the lowest level that should help retain the benefits of SRM while providing higher levels of predictability such as the Enlisted Active Army Stop Movement Program or Special Category Stabilizations.

Maintaining more constant manning numbers still has its challenges; the increased movement of personnel has made predictability harder to achieve.

Another factor complicating predictability are Professional Development Models for noncommissioned officers. NCO's must complete leadership time for their current grade before moving into broadening assignments in order to remain competitive for promotion.

Theater replacement requirements due to combat-related casualties, vacancies, and the normal rotation of personnel also add constraints to an already overburdened process.

Overcoming these challenges requires constantly examining and reassessing manning and human resources optimization.

FORSCOM units must be able to quickly identify what HR functions could not be executed or sustained in the event of extended, large scale combat. They must also assess where those functions could be better served, and rapidly reorganize or restructure to achieve optimization. In other words, how do we bridge the gap between our current HR capabilities and our future needs?

Enabling the operating force to achieve high levels of readiness through sufficient, quality manning, while addressing challenges in the generating force was the focus for the nearly 100 Soldiers and civilians attending the 4-day conference. All the while keeping in mind the basic tenets of the Army Vision- Soldiers able to deploy, fight, and win, anytime and anywhere.