FORT INDIANTOWN GAP, Pa. -- Pennsylvania Army National Guard Soldiers are playing a major role in the development and testing of a new personnel and pay system that will transform the Army's human resources and pay environment.

The Pennsylvania Army National Guard was selected to be the beta test state for the Army's new Integrated Personnel and Pay System Army (IPPS-A) three years ago, and has since been heavily involved with testing of the system.

Field testing on the new system began Jan. 7 and will run through Feb. 13. During this time, testing by Pennsylvania Army National Guard Soldiers will occur across the Commonwealth, in conjunction with the Army Test and Evaluation Command (ATEC) and IPPS-A personnel, to identify areas for improvement within the system.

The Pennsylvania Army National Guard has provided critical subject matter expertise to ensure IPPS-A system capabilities successfully bridge Army human resource essential services and support, align to Army National Guard policies, processes and procedures, and are in compliance with controls and auditability requirements.

"This initiative involved numerous programs, functional staffs and system stakeholders, both internal and external, to develop and test IPPS-A," said Army Col. Matthew Cooper, Joint Force Headquarters, Pennsylvania National Guard human resources officer.

The diligence of Pennsylvania Army National Guard Soldiers and the valuable feedback they provided will ensure the system is well developed and operating to the best of its ability when it comes time to push the live system to the rest of the State National Guards, as well as the Active and U.S. Army Reserve components, in the near future.

Many of the Soldiers that have been testing the system and experiencing it firsthand have positive things to say about it.

"The system is new to us so there's a difficult learning curve, but this is what we're going to be using moving forward. So this training is important to get everyone on board," said Sgt. 1st Class David Zadzura Jr., personnel non-commissioned officer in charge for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 55th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, 28th Infantry Division. "The potential definitely exists for this system to make our lives in S1 (personnel) more convenient," Zadzura added, "but that requires those of us testing it to provide the necessary feedback and suggestions to get it there."