ARLINGTON, Va. -- The capabilities possessed by the Integrated Personnel and Pay System – Army (IPPS-A) for routing and processing Personnel Action Requests (PARs) improved significantly for the National Guard during a collaboration between IPPS-A System Integrators and National Guard System Integration Branch (SIB) Chiefs on April 1, 2020.
The enhancements added will allow each intermediate approver in the workflow chain to edit fields and content, and delete key supporting documents that require workflow while executing a PAR transaction. These enhancements will save Human Resources professional’s hours, even days of work time.
“In some cases, PARs were being sent back from brigade level,” said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Lionel Blair, Virginia Army National Guard SIB Chief. “Prior to these enhancements the originator was the only one who could update a PAR. So, if we don’t have to send the PAR back to the originator, you’re saving a significant amount of time.”
IPPS-A is the Army’s new 21st Century Human Resources system, and part of the Army’s move to a more modern force. Part of this modernization is going paperless when it comes to the Adjutant General career field.
Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jackeline Delancey, IPPS-A Release 2 Defects Manager, helped organize the demonstration. Chief Blair, fellow Guard Soldiers, and Peggy Richardson, of the IPPS-A Release 2 Sustainment Team all wanted to collaborate with one another to improve workflow in the system, according to Chief Delancey.
“It’s an dramatic advantage to be able to push actions through for approval,” said Delancey. “Each party wanted to hear the other’s ideas. They all wanted to flush out any questions about workflow issues and come together on solutions.”
Richardson taking time to sit with Blair, and other SIB Chiefs to go step-by-step through the PAR process shows Blair how dedicated Richardson and other system integrators are to the project.
“Ms. Richardson working with us is absolute value added,” said Blair. “If it wasn’t for relationships like these, and everyone on and associated with the program being open to input from all echelons we wouldn’t be where we are at today.”
According to Richardson, she was just doing her job.
"We're here to create solutions for the Army, and part of that creative process is listening to our client's needs," said Richardson. "We want to take all necessary steps to ensure we are giving our client the best possible solution."
Blair added that Richardson and other system integrators on the program have asked for feedback from clients since the building and implementation of IPPS-A began.
“The designers realize that feedback is what improves a product,” said Blair. “They’ve asked for feedback from day one, and that’s why we’ve continued to make progress with the system.”
(Story by Justin Creech, IPPS-A STRATCOM)