Continuity of Operations exercise declared a success

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Leisa Grant

More than 70 members from Headquarters Air Reserve Personnel Center participated in a Continuity of Operations, COOP, exercise here Monday.

The exercise tested the ability of HQ ARPC technicians to field the Total Force Service Center’s call volume in compliance with the center’s business continuity plan.

This plan was created to provide continuous customer support in the event the Air Force Personnel Center in San Antonio experiences a phone outage due to conditions that hinder their ability to take calls.

“This exercise was important as it demonstrated the flexibility in the delivery of [personnel] services across components and cemented the relationship between the two service centers,” said Col. Ashley Heyen, ARPC director of Personnel & Total Force Services. “This relationship is essential as it enables the execution of functions and tasks of the Centralized TFSC when the capabilities are threatened in the event of a man-made, technological or natural disaster.” 

Weeks of preparation were required before the COOP exercise was able to simulate a real-world event.

At the completion of the exercise, in which ARPC team members fielded nearly 1,200 calls, it was evident that both centers’ were able to transfer primary responsibilities in a manner that was seamless to the customers.

"This was a team effort between the Total Force Service Center in San Antonio and ARPC," said Lt. Col. Terence Kudo, exercise director at ARPC. "We wanted to ensure that we had the ability to answer customer calls in the event of a disruption. We also showed the professionalism and dedication of our ARPC team members in the way they jumped in and handled customer calls, some of whom had never done this before."

Currently, the AFPC is the primary location where all TFSC agents answer calls and create tickets, some of which are then routed to applicable sections within ARPC for processing.

ARPC technicians are able to process personnel actions for Air Force Reservists, Air National Guard members and retirees should the issue need to be transferred from the call center.

Many personnel actions, however, may be completed by the member by submitting a ticket via myPers, without having to contact the service center. In these instances, the call center technician will provide instructions for the member to initiate their self-service action.