Operation Hire Now aims to more rapidly fill 70-plus vacancies
Operation Hire Now is a one-time initiative being tested by the Mission and Installation Contracting Command Human Capital Directorate to address workforce opportunities in the General Schedule 7, 9 and 11 positions across the command. (Photo Credit: Daniel P. Elkins) VIEW ORIGINAL

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (March 17, 2022) -- A strategic hiring initiative to recruit and hire approximately 70 Army civilians to fill current and projected vacancies aims to streamline the hiring process by freeing up time for hiring managers while decreasing staffing times and turnover rates for both entry-level and developmental contracting and support positions.

Operation Hire Now is a one-time initiative being tested by the Mission and Installation Contracting Command Human Capital Directorate to address workforce opportunities in the General Schedule 7, 9 and 11 positions across the command.

“Standardizing and centralizing hires in developmental 1102 positions provides more efficient hiring and a more effective delivery of acquisition services for our mission partners,” said Maria Allen, the MICC deputy chief of staff for personnel, at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas. “Decreasing fill times for 1102 contracting positions at the entry level command-wide while supporting the acquisition mission and executing our civilian pay funds is key to achieving maximum staffing levels for successful mission execution.”

To achieve this, human resource officials are developing and administering the hiring program in accordance with established policy adhering to Office of Personnel Management merit system principles. This will permit the directorate to achieve an overall fill rate aligning with higher headquarters goals, according to Patrick Hill, a MICC human capital specialist. He added Army Contracting Command human resource officials obtained funding to fill MICC positions at a 91% rate, compelling the MICC to fill its vacancies and projected vacancies at a quicker rate in order to execute civilian pay funding.

Dean Michalec, the deputy for human capital, explained that while there are few concerns with hiring people in GS-7 positions with a target to GS-11 depending on the MICC location, Operation Hire Now introduces efficiencies to the laborious process for hiring officials.

“If we are hiring at 20 offices, each has to complete a three-person resume panel followed by an interview panel with three different people. Some offices have an internal approval process before any selection can go to a civilian personnel advisory center specialist, which also could involve numerous people,” Michalec said. “This could entail 120-plus people in the hiring process. This is nothing new, but it is time consuming, nevertheless.”

Headquartered at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, the MICC is made up of two brigades, two field directorate offices and 28 installation contracting offices across the nation. Michalec added Operation Hire Now consolidates the application referral and review processes at the headquarters to identify the most qualified candidates for interviews involving hiring subject matter experts from each of the brigades and field directorates.

“Instead of involving 120 to 150 people across the command, we can accomplish the same results with six to 10 people. The amount of workhours and productivity saved in our subordinate offices and CPAC is significant,” he added. “We still have to work with each CPAC on the job offers, but we hope this efforts streamlines the hiring process for this one event.”

The hiring initiative will be accomplished in four phases. The first two phases now underway involve identifying the hiring panel and administrative support as well as vacant and recruitment positions during the first week. Program managers next plan to consolidate standardized vacancy announcements applying maximum hiring flexibilities to speed recruiting and hiring.

Consolidated vacancy announcements, opening March 23, include:

The third phase entails human resource personnel at the MICC headquarters coordinating with respective brigade and field directorate office staff and selecting officials. The fourth phase includes a candidate resume review and interview with the appropriate brigade or field directorate hiring managers to include selection, preferably no more than 14 days from the issuance of referral certificates from the civilian personnel advisory center.

About the MICC

Headquartered at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, the Mission and Installation Contracting Command consists of about 1,300 military and civilian members who are responsible for contracting goods and services in support of Soldiers as well as readying trained contracting units for the operating force and contingency environment when called upon. As part of its mission, MICC contracts are vital in feeding more than 200,000 Soldiers every day, providing many daily base operations support services at installations, facilitate training in the preparation of more than 100,000 conventional force members annually, training more than 500,000 students each year, and maintaining more than 14.4 million acres of land and 170,000 structures.