Presidio of Monterey Workforce Development a resource for career guidance

By Winifred BrownFebruary 25, 2022

Presidio of Monterey Workforce Development a resource for career guidance
Stephanie Schafer, chief of Workforce Development at the Presidio of Monterey, introduces an online Operational Excellence training class on goal setting in her office at PoM, Calif., Feb. 24. (Photo Credit: Winifred Brown) VIEW ORIGINAL

PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. (Feb. 25, 2022) – As the chief of Workforce Development for U.S. Army Garrison Presidio of Monterey, Stephanie Schafer continuously asks herself how she can help employees feel more invested, happy and engaged in their jobs.

“Engaged employees are not only motivated by money,” Schafer said. “Do I have job satisfaction? Am I given opportunities to do something that’s interesting and meaningful? Do I feel appreciated? Do I feel happy and safe here? All of those things are factors in employee engagement and retention.”

While Schafer reaches out to the workforce through emails, trainings and employee recognition programs, she encourages employees to reach out to her as well. Workforce Development offers a variety of programs and resources designed to help civilian employees progress in their careers and, ultimately, increase Soldier readiness.

For employees to ask informed questions, however, it is necessary for them to know what the garrison’s Workforce Development program offers.

Schafer, a retired sergeant first class with more than eight years of experience as an Army civilian, oversees a variety of U.S. Army Installation Management Command services and programs that include the Service Culture Campaign, the onboarding program, leader and workforce engagement services, training and employee recognition programs.

She also directs the employee professional development training program, which includes Operational Excellence, or “OPEX,” customer service training and monthly professional development trainings. Other than a monthly report she sends to IMCOM, however, Schafer is not involved with annual Department of Defense and Army training requirements.

Not only can Schafer help supervisors put together training to address particular issues, she can assist individuals set themselves up for future career success through professional development.

This month alone, Schafer has sent information via email about Massive Open Online Courses, often called “MOOCs,” the new Army Housing Management Certificate, and the “Interactive Leader Development Guide,” among other training opportunities.

Schafer also hosted a training session on goal setting and time management Feb. 24, as well as an OPEX training session on problem solving.

In addition, Schafer can help with Individual Development Plans and the upcoming annual Defense Performance Management and Appraisal Program requirements.

“Step by step, call me,” Schafer said. “We’ll do it on Teams together.”

All employees are unique, Schafer said, and with the widely disparate career fields within the garrison workforce, her approach to helping people is flexible and adaptable.

“I’m not telling you what you need,” Schafer said. “You know what things are interesting to you, and maybe you don’t know what the end point is right now, but what’s the next right thing for you? What’s the next thing that you can do that’s going to make you happy in the moment and maybe set you up for success?”

Within the next month, garrison employees will receive a training needs assessment survey via email to assess how the garrison can increase the effectiveness of directorates and employees, Schafer said, and she encourages employees to respond.

Schafer also encourages employees to visit the Army Substance Abuse Program Office, often called “ASAP,” and the Employee Assistance Program, which offers help for more personal matters. The programs, which also fall under the Directorate of Human Resources, offer much more than help with drug and alcohol issues.

Civilian employees are critical to the success of the Army’s mission, Schafer said, and their success as individuals is important.

“The more competent we are, the more engaged we are, the more invested we are,” she said, “the more effective and efficient and cost effective the military can be in accomplishing its mission.”

Reach Schafer at or (831) 242-5474. Contact ASAP at (831) 242-6960. Learn more about PoM Workforce Development and available career resources at