A tribute to the ARPC Service Delivery Transformation Team

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Doug Ottinger
  • Director of Future Operations and Integration
With this article, I would like to recognize a group that I have had the pleasure of working with for the past four years. I'm referring to the unsung heroes of the Service Delivery Transformation Team. This team has made lasting and significant improvements to the quality of service we provide our customers and the way we work here at the Air Reserve Personnel Center. 

It was four years ago last month that the SDTT met for the first time. Since that time this group has gone through every phase of team development and back, but in the end, they made significant and lasting changes to the ways we deliver personnel services to our Airmen. 

The original members of this team were: Lt. Col. John Babcock, SC; Craig Carter, SC; Staff Sgt. Carrie Doolen, PSD; Gloria Goodgain, DPP; Daryl Gruneisen, XP; Doug Jessup, XP; Reniese Johnson, DPA; Lt. Col. Karen Kinne, SG; Thomas Laursen, SC; Lt. Col. Allison Lynch, DPB; Maj. Doug Ottinger, DPS; Hugo Padilla, DPS; Master Sgt. Mike Ruggeri, DPS; Cindy Slovik, DPS; Senior Master Sgt. Sharon Tucker, DPS; Nicole Vaughan, XP; Maj. Kim Wheeler, PA; and Greg Zipprich, SC.

Many of these folks have moved on to other jobs, been promoted or retired; but their impact on ARPC remains. 

Their mission was to transform ARPC's service delivery methods by automating, streamlining and aligning current processes within a tiered service delivery model; and that's just what they did. 

In the first six months, the team managed to move several services from the back shops to the Web, which made these services much easier for the customer and reduced workload for us. 

One of the first processes transformed was the 20-year letter reissue process. 

The 20-year letter has always been an important document for reservists. It's their proof of achieving enough points to be eligible for a Reserve retirement once they reach 60 years old. 

However, reservists frequently misplace this letter and need a new one. Before the SDTT, the Airman would have to call ARPC, be transferred to a retirements technician who would research their information, generate a new 20-year letter and mail it to them. All in all, this process took 5-10 days to complete. 

After the SDTT, all Aimen have to do is logon to the virtual Personnel Center - Guard and Reserve, request a new letter, and they can download the new letter in less than three minutes. A retirements technician isn't even involved now.

The SDTT oversaw redesign of ARPC's Web site and launch of the vPC-GR, which provides a user-friendly portal for the Citizen Airman to access frequently asked questions and submit personnel service requests any time, day or night. 

This platform became the backbone for almost every process the team transformed; continually moving more services to the Web, reducing ARPC workload and improving customer convenience. Since its inception in 2004, vPC-GR has maintained an average customer satisfaction rating of at least 85 percent. This success can directly be attributed to the SDTT.

Additionally, the team worked together to establish coordination procedures and accelerated workflow procedures when customer requests pass between directorates that always keep the customers' needs first. The team completely re-engineered the retirements process, streamlining and automating many parts of it. Now, retirements are processed and approved on average in 40 days versus the 60 days it used to take.
These are just a few of the accomplishments of the SDTT over the past four years, and there's still plenty more to do. Future tasks have been passed to the newly established process council. Yes, just as folks have had to adjust to changes brought on by the SDTT, the SDTT has had to adjust. 

But I just couldn't let the incredible hard work of this team fade away without giving credit where credit is due. To my fellow SDTT members, those who have moved on and those who remain, I say it was an honor working with you. We did what we came to do!