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-Home > Spotlights-2015-07
Spotlights-2015-07
31
JUL
Ideas of the Week: The contributions below represent some of the great ideas that we have received since the website was launched. Thanks to the many innovators, within and outside of the Department of the Navy, that continue to provide impressive suggestions!
idea

Every Sailor who takes an advancement exam is told to review their respective bibliographies (Bibs) in order to study for an upcoming exam. While this can be a useful thing to say at some level on the active component (AC) side of things as they have technical publication libraries, reservists (especially those not located near a fleet concentration) do not have that kind of information readily available to them. Usually they take to third-party websites (www.navybmr.com is a classic example) in order to find just some of the reference materials needed. Understandably some rates will have varying degrees of security classifications and some material will not be available for upload due to this, however a majority of the information can be, and should be, harnessed into one go-to point for each sailor to readily access and review the information available to them. Thus I propose that as much advancement exam reference material as possible (with current revisions) be digitized and loaded into either a website which is easily accessible, or into the soon to be released mobile application. Some may say NKO would be a good spot for this, but even the CNP Vice Adm. Bill Moran has said, "NKO stinks". Given this level of readily accessible, and continuously updated, information, we can have Sailors who are better skilled, better informed, and more confident about the jobs which they perform.
- Submitted by a Sailor
idea

Why at the end of the quarter or physical year do we scramble to spend all the money in the command. This happens a lot with flight hours. I have gone flying just because we needed to burn flight hours. Why can’t we just carry over the flight hours instead of losing it and if we have money left over after the physical year the command shouldn’t be punished with getting a smaller budget but maintaining the same one.
- Submitted by a Sailor
idea

Every Sailor will tell you: There are numerous and redundant systems that contain personnel service record information. Sailors must access, use and monitor multiple personnel systems that do not share data, or do not share data in a reliable and timely manner. Here is a small sample of systems that Sailors must engage directly and monitor closely in order to have successful careers: Official Military Personnel File (OMPF), Electronic Service Record (ESR), Electronic Training Jacket (ETJ), U.S. Navy Awards (NDAWS), Officer/Enlisted Personnel Summary Record (PSR), Physical Readiness Information Management System (PRIMS), Joint Service Transcript (JST)/Sailor-Marine American Council On Education Registry Transcript (SMART), Relational Administrative Data Management System (RADM), Total Workforce Management Services (TWMS), Navy Family Accountability and Assessment System (NFAAS), Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS), Defense Medical Human Resources System-internet (DMHRS-i), etc. 
 
Recommendations
1) If ESR is the replacement for the old paper Field Service Record, then mandate its use as the single repository of Navy personnel data. 
2) Perform all personnel transactions using ESR functionality. 
3) Ensure ESR updates OMPF efficiently and effectively to support Sailor promotion, retention, assignment, separation and retirement processes. 
4) Consolidate all other systems’ functionality into ESR. For example, direct all training data be entered into ESR and then “kill” redundant systems and functionality found elsewhere (example, RADM, TWMS, DMHRS-I, Advanced Skills Management (ASM), etc.)
5) If systems such as RADM, ASM and TWMS provide unique capability that must be retained, then “downsize” the system to deliver only that unique capability (in other words, eliminate redundant functionality). 
6) For DOD systems that cannot be “killed” ensure successful (prompt, accurate and complete) data transfer of essential personnel information into ESR. Specifically, ESR, NFAAS and DEERS should be closely synched. 
 
Expected Results
1) Navy personnel have two complementary records – OMPF and ESR – that document their personal and professional achievements accurately and completely. 
2) Eliminating the requirement to access and use multiple systems reduces the Fleet’s administrative burden significantly. 
3) Resources saved (money and time) by eliminating redundancy can be redirected to the Navy’s warfighting mission. 
 4) Navy leaders and servicemembers are confident that OMPF and ESR accurately reflect the personal and professional achievements of all Navy personnel.
 
- Submitted by a Navy Civilian
idea

Sleep and fatigue during underway watchstanding. The attached ""Sleep and Fatigue"" brief addresses a circadian 3/9 watch rotation that allows Sailors to get more and better sleep underway. It has been studied in some detail by the Naval Postgraduate School and has proven benefits that include shorter, more focused watches, a stable work routine, and better sleep in a circadian routine. Many ships are using it, but in discussing the details, I find that many are not leveraging ""best practices"" such as rotating every 2 weeks, holding officer's all later in the day, etc. Your program could accelerate the dissemination of lessons and best practices and provide advocacy.
- Submitted by a Navy Officer
(The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense or the United States government.)
30
JUL

The Sailors and Marines of the naval reserve forces possess an enormous amount of civilian training and experience that must be used to stimulate innovation within the DON. Often time the military personnel systems do not fully recognize civilian talent. The SECNAV wants to leverage the incredible talent of the reservist. Read more here...
29
JUL

Virtual and Simulated Training help develop your instincts, allow for real-time direction and feedback, and provides the opportunity to experiment with different environmental/situational variables. Virtual training and simulation have the ability to revolutionize how we train our Forces today and in the future.
 
Today the Department of the Navy launches an Ideation Challenge for Virtual Training and Simulated Environments. Register for Naval Innovation Network’s (NIN) online crowdsourcing forum, The Hatch, and submit your ideas on Virtual Training and Simulated Environments ...
28
JUL

The pace of technological change today is rapid and it is likely to accelerate in the future. Several emerging fields such as autonomous systems, advanced robotics, additive manufacturing and directed energy have the potential to fundamentally change how the navy operates today and will provide game-changing warfighting advantages in the future. However, technology without a properly trained workforce will be ineffective. To ensure the skills of our Sailors and Marines keep pace with the changing technological environment, the SECNAV directs the naval services to start anticipating future personnel demands. Read more here...
27
JUL

Less than a week into the war, the mid-Atlantic fleet action began between U.S. and German forces. After the opening gunfire, the American line, although outnumbered 18 to 9, had crippled or sunk several ships and seemed set to win due to better position and firepower. Suddenly, the Imperial German zeppelin formation broke though the cloud cover, unleashing a swarm of single-seat “dragonfly” attack craft to sink the battlewagon USS Susquehanna...
24
JUL

Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) recognized several employees and development teams for their innovative solutions to mission challenges in a ceremony July 22. This recognition is part of NAVSEA’s new Commander’s Award for Innovation program. The program encourages employees to develop ideas that eliminate waste, improve work flow, create value and support the command’s strategic business plan. This program also aligns with the Secretary of the Navy’s direction that commanders create incentive programs for recognizing innovation...
23
JUL

The information age and proliferation of data has revolutionized all aspects of how we do business within the Department of the Navy (DON). This trend is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. See what the SECNAV is doing to ensure the DON Workforce stays at the forefront of this rapidly evolving data-centric environment...
20
JUL

ARLINGTON, Va. (NNS) -- On July 7-12, 16 teams-from the United States and as far away as Indonesia, Taiwan and South Korea-hit the water with custom-built autonomous surface vehicles (ASVs) at the eighth annual RoboBoat Competition, held in Virginia Beach, Virginia...
16
JUL

The mission of the Department of the Navy requires strategic thinking, operational excellence and coordination of complex issues in geographically dispersed, stressful conditions. Structure and hierarchy are critical components to success. At the same time, the DON must anticipate, adapt, and thrive in a rapidly changing environment, which requires freedom, the flexibility to innovate at all levels, and the ability to flatten the organization, break-down silos, and create cross-disciplinary synergies. The mission and structure are unique, but we can learn from other innovative organizations in order to cultivate the organizational characteristics and culture which will provide the foundation for an innovative DON...
15
JUL

Every Marine, Sailor and civilian in the Department of Navy has ideas for how to do their job better or to improve their organization. To stimulate innovation, the department must incentivize and reward those innovators who bring their great ideas to reality. The SECNAV just announced the overhaul of existing innovation incentive programs and the creation of new innovation awards. Read more here:...
13
JUL

One of Secretary Mabus’s three Department of the Navy Innovation goals is Information as an Asset. Today, retired Captain John Litherland explains how the profusion of sensors in the world, their ever-growing numbers and capabilities for collecting information, will radically the vulnerability of ships and aircraft. He argues of an imperative need for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps to develop new ways to think about such an operating environment...
10
JUL

GENERAL QUARTERS, GENERAL QUARTERS. Reload your Idea Guns and fire the Final Protective Line! The Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Campaign in The Hatch is only open until 15 July. Make sure that you submit your ideas and contribute feedback to others’ ideas before the Campaign ends...
150605-N-PO203-565
09
JUL

Today, Vice-Admiral Philip H. Cullom returns to explain how Innovation can change Navy Department energy use. His argument is plain: saving energy isn’t simply about being “green;” instead, better energy use costs less, letting the Department devote resources elsewhere, and, most significantly means operating forces can operate forward longer. Gains in efficiency get taxpayers more Navy and Marine Corps capability and capacity for the same number of dollars, and over the long term Innovation may allow ships to operate without a logistical “tail” at all...
08
JUL

The Secretary of the Navy, Commandant of the Marine Corps, and Chief of Naval Operations have each expressed their support for increasing the use of simulation to foster innovation and prepare for operations. But how far can the DON go in these virtual worlds? We are about to find out as the SECNAV directs key leaders to develop a DON roadmap....
07
JUL

Second Lieutenants at The Basic School in the late 1990s were required to read Orson Scott Card’s novel Ender’s Game. At the time, I could not understand why, with the Marine Corps’ rich operational history, we were required to read commercial science fiction. Had learning from our own legacy become somehow insufficient...
02
JUL
Ideas of the Week: The contributions below represent some of the great ideas that we have received since the website was launched. Thanks to the many innovators, within and outside of the Department of the Navy, that continue to provide impressive suggestions!
idea

Currently, Officers have 14 uniforms, Chiefs have 13, and junior enlisted have 12. While having to maintain them (or at least most of them), most only wear 4 or 5 with any regularity. Why not get rid of some of the seasonal uniforms and eliminate variations that are only distinguishable by their color? We have only 3 working uniforms (NWUs, coveralls, PTU) and yet we have 5 dinner dress uniforms! Do we really need to have that many variants of uniforms?
- Submitted by a Navy Officer
idea

Convert Navy Correspondence Manual document types to Microsoft Word formats to be downloaded on DoN computers. Clearly the correspondence manual was made with typewriters in mind and we can't all be YNs. All current computers are issued with Microsoft Word. Word allows the creation of formats for use in creating documents. This would assist in reducing the administrative distraction of constantly referencing the Correspondence Manual and correcting the one misplaced space in the entire document. We are warfighters, not administrative masterminds. Yes, attention to detail is key in our profession, and yes, we should all be capable of figuring out the Correspondence Manual ourselves but we have the technology to eliminate much of the time wasted on these projects by simply creating and downloading these formats. If this were implemented, you would open word, select the type of document (memorandum, letter of transmittal, etc.) and fill it out as appropriate. The spacing and numbering (lettering, as the case may be) would already be a part of the format. And for commands, they would simply have to save their own letterhead in the appropriate spot. While this would not eliminate all typos, it would make most of them more substantive in nature rather than formatting issues as is the current case. Alternatively, the manual could be overhauled to conform to Microsoft Word's preconceived notions of numbering, lettering (roman numerals, arabic numerals, upper case letters, lower case letters), and tab spacing. By reducing the inordinate amount of time spent on reworking paperwork for proper formatting, people's talent and time can be better spent on more pressing issues related to our real jobs. Obviously this would require minimal training to spread the word about the availability of such formats so they could be properly utilized.
- Submitted by a Navy Officer
idea

Removing the risk and habitability requirements for manned ships opens up the design possibilities for Artic equipment. One example would be a rescue device. For example, an enclosed snowmobile with a fuel trailer could go a long way to rescue a downed pilot, stranded hiker, or person in distress in a blizzard. This vehicle could have autonomous or semi-autonomous behaviors, but also have remotely operated capability as well. Another opportunity is ice breaking. Currently, traditional ice breakers go over the ice and use the ship weight to break it. Perhaps an unmanned semi-submersible ice breaker of substantial size (think submarine) could have a very narrow and very gradual snow plow shape along its length that used momentum and buoyant force to lift the ice (putting it in tension), then passively convey it along the plow blades out of the newly formed channel. You could heat the interior up to an uncomfortable temperature for humans and let the heat help reduce icing problems on the hull. There may also be some strategic opportunities with ice vehicles.
- Submitted by a Navy Civilian
idea

When most hear "MWD", they think "Military Working Dog"... but what if it could mean "Military Working Drone." Professor Warwick of Reading University has already proven that rat brain cells can be used as processors for simple, learning robots. Advancements in bionics have shown the ability of animal brains to manipulate computers and robotics. These biological processors already have the innate ability to process visual information in ways computers still have difficulty - perhaps instead of trying to purely brute-force program our way to AI, we should seek out ways to use the pre-existing natural computers in nature to do some of our work for us. These bionics, as well as Chinese initial development of a mind-controlled drone, also allow for a style of "auxiliary" drone - something that follows along with and reacts to a user inputs - such as a reconnaissance drone that operates while a Marine or SEAL has their hands free to operate their weapon while getting inputs in a pair of goggles? This small example offers interesting opportunities, as we essentially give the warfighter an extra "limb" or "eye."
- Submitted by a Navy Officer
(The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense or the United States government.)
01
JUL

Transparency - You've asked, and we've answered. The Hatch welcomes stages, where you can track the status of ideas as they progress toward implementation. The more the crowd engages with others on the Hatch, the better chance ideas have of advancing.
Communities and Disciplines - On the homepage of the Hatch, you can now click on #HATCHTAGS associated with specific Warfighting Communities and Disciplines, which will take you directly to ideas that interest you.
Mobile Application - If you haven't tried it out, you should! The Hatch has a mobile application that allows you to vote and comment on any ideas in the Hatch. Search for "IdeaScale" in your iOS or Android app store! Don't wait; join the conversation now! 
 
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