09 March 2010

Visit to USS OAK HILL (LSD-51)


Last week, I visited the USS OAK HILL (LSD-51) after I received an invitation to experience a “day in the life of a JO” and get a true deckplate perspective on the administrative programs we currently use on our ships and the impact these programs have on our LPOs, LCPOs, DIV (O)s, and DHs. During my time on USS OAK HILL, the crew candidly presented the goods, bads, and others on the following programs:

Relational Administrative Data Management (R-ADM)
Electronic Shift Operations Management System (eSOMS)
Transaction On-line Processing System (TOPS)
Navy Cash
Training / Operational Information Services (TORIS)
Training Figure of Merit (TFOM)
Casualty Reporting System (CASREP)
Defense Readiness Reporting System – Navy (DRRS-N)
Organizational Maintenance Management System - Next Generation (OMMS-NG)

To the crew of USS OAK HILL – thanks very much for providing me an extremely informative visit. I really enjoyed my time with you and I’m very grateful for your candor and straight-forward feedback on the administrative tools required to operate a warship today. I very much look forward to a follow-on visit in the future.

Understanding that my visit to USS OAK HILL provided only one data point; I will also be visiting an aircraft squadron, submarine, and NECC unit in the near future to continue to build my situational awareness on what it takes to get the job done in our Navy at the deckplate level – if you want me to visit your unit, have your CO send me an invitation.

For the rest of the team, I would like to hear your perspective regarding these particular administrative and maintenance programs and any other tools you use in the course of your daily routine. All the best, JCHjr.




R-ADM? The first thing I was ever instructed on aboard a ship was how to do a muster report in R-ADM, this on my first day in the Ship's Office. That was just about the only thing I was every shown how to do in R-ADM. I taught myself how to take care of PQS's in R-ADM a few years later when I became the training-PO.

R-ADM is awesome, if anyone really knew how to use it, all of it. We could just about get rid of paper on ships.

My opinion? Make a billet for YNs to go to SPAWAR, or whoever invented it, and be the training team that goes out to the Ships and teaches the YNs/PSs who live and die by that program. I literally would leave R-ADM open all the time, and not close it unless my beast-of-burden of a computer finally froze and had to be restarted. (The ITs used to make wagers on how many windows I would have simultaneously open on my PC. The record was 43)

TOPS... Sir, TOPS almost gave me an ulcer on my last deployment. I learned about TOPS when I was told by PAPA Det that they couldn't accept my paperwork any more because I wasn't submitting through this thing, called TOPS. They didn't exactly jump to help me get an account either. About a week later we figured it out and got it rolling. But, then we did a mission where Rivercity had to be set. So, now I couldn't use TOPS.

All of our efforts in utilizing electronic methods of administration to include NKO are paltry compared to the amazingly robust and mature programs developed by the Army. AKO is a dream to use as is DKO (Defense Knowledge Online). The Army doesn't need TOPS, because they have AKO/DKO which functions just like TOPS does for us, and more. They also have what's called "S-1 net". S-1 net is like the YN homepage on NKO, except on steroids and useful. Everything an Army administrator needs is just about right there. I don't know who the Army got to put that all together for them, but AKO/DKO is simply the best proprietary DoD program I have ever used.

I would even say that if we can not get TOPS and R-ADM to where the Army has many of their electronic tools in two years. Scrap them both and adapt the Army's tools to our needs. Because they've done the leg work, let's just flatter them with imitation.

YN2(SW) Battle Yeoman

ADM J. C. Harvey, Jr USN said...

Battle Yeoman, it's always good to hear from you and get the straight-gouge. I'll go and learn more about AKO/DKO. Thanks very much for the steer. All the best, JCHjr