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VFFTSGT
08-21-2013, 12:23 AM
This concept needs to come to an end. It is one of the biggest waste of resources. I believe it was the Medical Groups that first starting do this years ago and then everyone jumped on board with it.

My first few years in...everyone was open for business from 0730-1630. In my unit at the time, you were not allowed to close. Even when there were picnics, commander calls, etc., someone was left behind...typically the standby guy or a couple people would tag in and out.

Now...shops in comm, LRS, CE, FSS and other units are doing it. I wouldn't be surprised if I called 911 and they said they were closed for training.

I have personally witnessed people in multiple units on facebook and doing other things goofing off during these "closed for training" days.

Everyone seems to pick different days, but why Friday? So you can dart out early every Friday, right and no one will notice... Everything "trained" will be forgotten by Monday...seems if you were training you would want to start the week off "training."

Then there is the benefit of these "closed for training" days...are they really benefiting the Air Force?! Your people should be stellar if they get a full day every week to do nothing but "training." But the service rendered typically says otherwise. Then there is the training plan and training records. Closed for training every week, you should have stellar training plans and stellar training records. Nope...10, 20, 30+ days non-progression with no justifiable reason is common place still. Journal entries...non-existent. MTP's not current.

Every organization and every office should be open and serving "customers" from 0730 - 1630, Monday - Friday, period.

Want to cut people out early one day? Fine, but a NCO or two should stay around to take care of the people on base that need your services.

Training should happen on-the-job...you know that concept taught to us long ago...OJT. A NCO or other "trainer" does a job and has a young Airman right there with them learning. Need extended time...go in the back and train, but the office should remain open with other people running it.

Gonzo432
08-21-2013, 12:32 AM
Roger that.

grimreaper
08-21-2013, 12:33 AM
Yup, I know people in some of these units and have asked them what they really do during these "training" days. Most of the time, the answer was nothing but a bunch of BS and they admitted it.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4Fy6AUMv8E

SomeRandomGuy
08-21-2013, 12:42 AM
This concept needs to come to an end. It is one of the biggest waste of resources. I believe it was the Medical Groups that first starting do this years ago and then everyone jumped on board with it.

My first few years in...everyone was open for business from 0730-1630. In my unit at the time, you were not allowed to close. Even when there were picnics, commander calls, etc., someone was left behind...typically the standby guy or a couple people would tag in and out.

Now...shops in comm, LRS, CE, FSS and other units are doing it. I wouldn't be surprised if I called 911 and they said they were closed for training.

I have personally witnessed people in multiple units on facebook and doing other things goofing off during these "closed for training" days.

Everyone seems to pick different days, but why Friday? So you can dart out early every Friday, right and no one will notice... Everything "trained" will be forgotten by Monday...seems if you were training you would want to start the week off "training."

Then there is the benefit of these "closed for training" days...are they really benefiting the Air Force?! Your people should be stellar if they get a full day every week to do nothing but "training." But the service rendered typically says otherwise. Then there is the training plan and training records. Closed for training every week, you should have stellar training plans and stellar training records. Nope...10, 20, 30+ days non-progression with no justifiable reason is common place still. Journal entries...non-existent. MTP's not current.

Every organization and every office should be open and serving "customers" from 0730 - 1630, Monday - Friday, period.

Want to cut people out early one day? Fine, but a NCO or two should stay around to take care of the people on base that need your services.

Training should happen on-the-job...you know that concept taught to us long ago...OJT. A NCO or other "trainer" does a job and has a young Airman right there with them learning. Need extended time...go in the back and train, but the office should remain open with other people running it.

I am on the fence on this one. When I worked at finance sometimes our "closed for training" days were actually catch up on work days. Of course we trained while we did the work but being closed was necessary due to the volume of work in the office. Imagine the following scenario that used to happen all the time:

Customer: I need to check on my voucher
Me: When did you drop it off?
Customer: 3 days ago
Me: Normally they take 5-7 days to pay
Customer: Can you just check and see if it is input yet?
Me: (after checking) no it has not been entered yet.
Customer: what is the delay?
Me: After we close down for the day I try and enter as many vouchers as I can but I am obviously standing here talking to you so I can't enter it right now.

When we were allowed to close for training we could sometimes get about 200 voucher processed instead of 50-100. That ultimately cut down on future customers. With that being said I think closing for training should be done sparingly and only out of necessity. Also before someone says that we should have came in on Saturday to catch up I would point out we were already doing that and still couldn't keep up. Also if we had questions on some items on the voucher and were working on Saturday we would have to wait until Monday to get them answered which is not efficient.

Silverback
08-21-2013, 12:44 AM
[QUOTE=grimreaper;647912]Yup, I know people in some of these units and have asked them what they really do during these "training" days. Most of the time, the answer was nothing but a bunch of BS and they admitted it.

Yeah in my unit. "Training days" are filled with fluff.

Venus
08-21-2013, 01:06 AM
I was reading Gen Robin Olds book written by his daughter Christine, when he took command of a wing in Thailand and found out that some off the flightline offices closed during normal duty hours he changed it to the same hours of the flightline, if mx and ops were pushing out combat sorties which was 24 hours a day they were also open. Of course that could not happen in today's USAF, that would be just plane mean.

imported_Shove_your_stupid_meeting
08-21-2013, 01:14 AM
I am on the fence on this one. When I worked at finance sometimes our "closed for training" days were actually catch up on work days. Of course we trained while we did the work but being closed was necessary due to the volume of work in the office. Imagine the following scenario that used to happen all the time:

Customer: I need to check on my voucher
Me: When did you drop it off?
Customer: 3 days ago
Me: Normally they take 5-7 days to pay
Customer: Can you just check and see if it is input yet?
Me: (after checking) no it has not been entered yet.
Customer: what is the delay?
Me: After we close down for the day I try and enter as many vouchers as I can but I am obviously standing here talking to you so I can't enter it right now.

When we were allowed to close for training we could sometimes get about 200 voucher processed instead of 50-100. That ultimately cut down on future customers. With that being said I think closing for training should be done sparingly and only out of necessity. Also before someone says that we should have came in on Saturday to catch up I would point out we were already doing that and still couldn't keep up. Also if we had questions on some items on the voucher and were working on Saturday we would have to wait until Monday to get them answered which is not efficient.

I remember those days. They were awful.

Rizzo77
08-21-2013, 01:16 AM
How ' bout this for ridiculous? The Army shuts down for Waste of Time (some call it "Sergeant's time"), usually on a Wednesday or Thursday morning. ALL Army offices close for business, to include those that HAVE NO SOLDIERS. Furlough THOSE mother****ers.

Gonzo432
08-21-2013, 01:21 AM
I was reading Gen Robin Olds book written by his daughter Christine, when he took command of a wing in Thailand and found out that some off the flightline offices closed during normal duty hours he changed it to the same hours of the flightline, if mx and ops were pushing out combat sorties which was 24 hours a day they were also open. Of course that could not happen in today's USAF, that would be just plane mean.

Robin Olds was the best, they don't make 'em like that anymore. He'd never make Major today.

efmbman
08-21-2013, 01:27 AM
How ' bout this for ridiculous? The Army shuts down for Waste of Time (some call it "Sergeant's time"), usually on a Wednesday or Thursday morning. ALL Army offices close for business, to include those that HAVE NO SOLDIERS. Furlough THOSE mother****ers.

Being a retired Army guy (and NCO) I do remember those days. In the line units, I questioned this practice because the line units have no customers. Realizing that, shouldn't those units be 1) training, 2) preparing from a training exercise, or 3) recovering from a training exercise? Those units that are customer oriented should not shut down completely for "training". A good leader will find a way to accomplish the mission and train the troops. I would welcome the sight of a junior NCO watching over a troop while learning a task even the task was being done for me. How the hell else will they learn?

When I was with the combat support hospital, I would seek out the newer medics and have them start IV's on me. The fake arm is decent, but nothing like a live-fire to really understand the task. Better to infiltrate my arm than do it to a casualty that actually requires the IV to stay alive.

To sum up: training is constant. Closing the shop for training indicates that the leader may not be able to handle the mission and training.

I am sure many of you will come up with exceptions, but that's how I see it.

Rizzo77
08-21-2013, 01:41 AM
Being a retired Army guy (and NCO) I do remember those days. In the line units, I questioned this practice because the line units have no customers. Realizing that, shouldn't those units be 1) training, 2) preparing from a training exercise, or 3) recovering from a training exercise? Those units that are customer oriented should not shut down completely for "training". A good leader will find a way to accomplish the mission and train the troops. I would welcome the sight of a junior NCO watching over a troop while learning a task even the task was being done for me. How the hell else will they learn?

When I was with the combat support hospital, I would seek out the newer medics and have them start IV's on me. The fake arm is decent, but nothing like a live-fire to really understand the task. Better to infiltrate my arm than do it to a casualty that actually requires the IV to stay alive.

To sum up: training is constant. Closing the shop for training indicates that the leader may not be able to handle the mission and training.

I am sure many of you will come up with exceptions, but that's how I see it.

Exceptions? You got it, rockstar (and it's medical!):

The 43rd MASH in Korea - I went to sick call on a Thursday morning, only to find that it was closed for Waste of Time. "But I'm REALLY sick!" "If it's that bad, come back to sick call at 1300 or go to the emergency room." I'm stupid and decided to tough it out. After an extremely miserable morning, I went and stood in line at the 1300 sick call. Following all of the waiting and tests, they determined that I had food poisoning, and was granted a sick call slip with intructions to rest and should "take the day off". That was at 1600, at which point I was told to "take the rest of the day to rest." I'm glad I puked on their floor.

jpeters
08-21-2013, 01:41 AM
I know half our Squadron does this. Their "training" days are usually them BSing or making plans for the weekend. It has gotten so bad that some people don't even go anymore because it is just a waste of time. The Airman and Family Readiness Center closes on Thursday here, they just turn off the lights and sit at the computer and don't do any training at all. I guess that's one of the bad things about having a front office with windows for walls. Everyone can see what you are doing all the time

WX Vortex
08-21-2013, 02:55 AM
Less with less!

FLAPS, USAF (ret)
08-21-2013, 03:38 AM
I am on the fence on this one. When I worked at finance sometimes our "closed for training" days were actually catch up on work days. Of course we trained while we did the work but being closed was necessary due to the volume of work in the office. Imagine the following scenario that used to happen all the time:

Customer: I need to check on my voucher
Me: When did you drop it off?
Customer: 3 days ago
Me: Normally they take 5-7 days to pay
Customer: Can you just check and see if it is input yet?
Me: (after checking) no it has not been entered yet.
Customer: what is the delay?
Me: After we close down for the day I try and enter as many vouchers as I can but I am obviously standing here talking to you so I can't enter it right now.

When we were allowed to close for training we could sometimes get about 200 voucher processed instead of 50-100. That ultimately cut down on future customers. With that being said I think closing for training should be done sparingly and only out of necessity. Also before someone says that we should have came in on Saturday to catch up I would point out we were already doing that and still couldn't keep up. Also if we had questions on some items on the voucher and were working on Saturday we would have to wait until Monday to get them answered which is not efficient.

You guys shutting down to play catch-up is BS. Why not keep your doors open during normal duty hours, then do overtime to catch up on vouchers? When mx is behind on fixing jets we don't tell ops to shut down flying for a day so we can catch up, we go on 12 hour shifts.

CJSmith
08-21-2013, 04:58 AM
MTF needs to have a "closed for training day".

akruse
08-21-2013, 05:16 AM
You guys shutting down to play catch-up is BS. Why not keep your doors open during normal duty hours, then do overtime to catch up on vouchers? When mx is behind on fixing jets we don't tell ops to shut down flying for a day so we can catch up, we go on 12 hour shifts.

MADNESS!

TREYSLEDGE
08-21-2013, 07:51 AM
Training days are helpful for some career fields. In mine we have a lot of deployable equipment and tasks that we don't do on a daily basis in our garrison job. So we need to keep proficient and ready to deploy. Yes sometimes this doesn't take a whole day, so the rest is filled with CBTs and stuff. But, we always have crews on standby in cases of emergency or urgent work.

If we didn't have one day a month for the entire squadron to do this, the shop NCOICs would still have to shut down their shops to conduct the training. So instead of having one of our 7-9 shops closed at different days throughout the month (which could give some the impression that our squadron is always closed for training) we pick one day that the shops may go to minimum manning to conduct our required training.

imported_Shove_your_stupid_meeting
08-21-2013, 08:42 AM
You guys shutting down to play catch-up is BS. Why not keep your doors open during normal duty hours, then do overtime to catch up on vouchers? When mx is behind on fixing jets we don't tell ops to shut down flying for a day so we can catch up, we go on 12 hour shifts.

Well to be fair, he said they did come in on Saturdays. If his office was anything like the one I worked in many years ago, working "overtime" on a daily basis was probably common too, at least for the kids on the counter.

BRUWIN
08-21-2013, 10:29 AM
Training days are vital to mission accomplishment. MPF in particular. If they don't take the time to train at least once a week than their customer service would be atrocious.

efmbman
08-21-2013, 11:14 AM
Exceptions? You got it, rockstar (and it's medical!):

The 43rd MASH in Korea - I went to sick call on a Thursday morning, only to find that it was closed for Waste of Time. "But I'm REALLY sick!" "If it's that bad, come back to sick call at 1300 or go to the emergency room." I'm stupid and decided to tough it out. After an extremely miserable morning, I went and stood in line at the 1300 sick call. Following all of the waiting and tests, they determined that I had food poisoning, and was granted a sick call slip with intructions to rest and should "take the day off". That was at 1600, at which point I was told to "take the rest of the day to rest." I'm glad I puked on their floor.

The remark about exceptions was to those that disagree with me. I agree with you - closing for "Sergeants Time" is counterproductive for customer oriented units. Line units should not require Sergeants Time since they should be in a training posture constantly. I am glad you puked on their floor, too.

BOSS302
08-21-2013, 12:20 PM
If a CE squadron is closing for training, then that CE squadron is wrong. Even on Prime BEEF days, there are crews within each shop in the Ops Flight who are responsible for responding to Emergencies & Urgents. And since most CES Ops Flight shops have civilians who do not need to dick around with CBTs and formations, they should be available for everything.

I myself have never been part of a CE squadron that closes for training. I'm sure it has happened. It sucks that it has because I hate nothing more than for CE to be lumped together with FSS' failures...

SomeRandomGuy
08-21-2013, 12:20 PM
You guys shutting down to play catch-up is BS. Why not keep your doors open during normal duty hours, then do overtime to catch up on vouchers? When mx is behind on fixing jets we don't tell ops to shut down flying for a day so we can catch up, we go on 12 hour shifts.

The office I am talking about I was already working 0700-1900 6 days per week. Heck there was even one day where I came in at 0400 so I could get some things done before everyone else arrived. I know people always say just "work more overtime" but I can tell you that a good leader knows that is not the answer. If you had a plumbing leak in your house and the entire living room was full of water would you bring in guys to work overtime bailing or would you shut the water off for one day so you could fix the leave?

Trust me on this one if finance is backed up on processing documents you are wasting your time stopping by anyways. Your document is just going to sit on someone's desk until they get all the other stuff off their desk. That means you run the risk of having it get lost. Also you have to remember that things like military pay have cutoff dates. We have to have any pay updates entered by the 23rd of the month in order for it to hit your paycheck on the 1st. If I close down on the 22nd to get all documents in it actually serves the customer much better even though they will complain about it.

imported_DannyJ
08-21-2013, 12:34 PM
The office I am talking about I was already working 0700-1900 6 days per week. Heck there was even one day where I came in at 0400 so I could get some things done before everyone else arrived. I know people always say just "work more overtime" but I can tell you that a good leader knows that is not the answer. If you had a plumbing leak in your house and the entire living room was full of water would you bring in guys to work overtime bailing or would you shut the water off for one day so you could fix the leave?

Trust me on this one if finance is backed up on processing documents you are wasting your time stopping by anyways. Your document is just going to sit on someone's desk until they get all the other stuff off their desk. That means you run the risk of having it get lost. Also you have to remember that things like military pay have cutoff dates. We have to have any pay updates entered by the 23rd of the month in order for it to hit your paycheck on the 1st. If I close down on the 22nd to get all documents in it actually serves the customer much better even though they will complain about it.

Sounds like your E9 or CC let manpower rape the manning and wanted a bullet for their performance report. If you were working 6 12s for more than a few months, your leadership and functional should have been fired. I don't think anyone was pointing the finger at your level, but nonetheless, it's still bullshit to close to "catch up". MXG/CCs world wide would have kittens if my unit closed for training.

BOSS302
08-21-2013, 12:35 PM
The office I am talking about I was already working 0700-1900 6 days per week. Heck there was even one day where I came in at 0400 so I could get some things done before everyone else arrived. I know people always say just "work more overtime" but I can tell you that a good leader knows that is not the answer. If you had a plumbing leak in your house and the entire living room was full of water would you bring in guys to work overtime bailing or would you shut the water off for one day so you could fix the leave?

Trust me on this one if finance is backed up on processing documents you are wasting your time stopping by anyways. Your document is just going to sit on someone's desk until they get all the other stuff off their desk. That means you run the risk of having it get lost. Also you have to remember that things like military pay have cutoff dates. We have to have any pay updates entered by the 23rd of the month in order for it to hit your paycheck on the 1st. If I close down on the 22nd to get all documents in it actually serves the customer much better even though they will complain about it.

"Lost" as in accidentally lost....or "lost" as in it was filed in a special cabinet called a file shredder?

jpeters
08-21-2013, 01:03 PM
Training days are vital to mission accomplishment. MPF in particular. If they don't take the time to train at least once a week than their customer service would be atrocious.

I'm in the same squadron as MPF and I can tell you that unless they are training at their house/dorm or in the smoke pit, they only do real training like once a month. The other days they just take a long lunch, go home early, or do nothing during the time they are closed. But I have noticed that there hasn't been as many complaints about lost documents or repeat visits for the same stuff as much as there use to be, so I guess they must train very well on that one day they actually train.

SomeRandomGuy
08-21-2013, 01:16 PM
Sounds like your E9 or CC let manpower rape the manning and wanted a bullet for their performance report. If you were working 6 12s for more than a few months, your leadership and functional should have been fired. I don't think anyone was pointing the finger at your level, but nonetheless, it's still bullshit to close to "catch up". MXG/CCs world wide would have kittens if my unit closed for training.

Actually what happened was the Air Force Financial Services Center (AFFSC). When they stood the AFFSC they asked for the manning to run it one year prior to actually opening. They wanted these "experts" to have the process nailed down before they accepted our workload. So we lost the bodies long before we ever lost the workload. That would have been fine if MAJCOM had allowed us some leeway on metrics. The problem is that no one wanted to see red on a slide even though it was easily explainable. This lead to a situation where we were told by our awesome commander and E9 that we would still be meeting the main metrics no matter how we had to do it (similar to what FLAPS proposed "suck it up and work some overtime for the next few months"). The problem was complicated when the AFFSC had system issues and kept pushing our dates back. That meant instead of a few months to a year it went for almost 2 years.

After the AFFSC stood up things got even worse because they also had manning issues and the people that worked there would reject just about anything if they could. I saw one voucher was rejected because they couldn't tell if the zip code should be 97008 or 97oo8. I sent it right back and said do you really think it might be an O and not a zero in the zip code? BS like that screws both the finance office and the customer and it sadly happens all the time. With that being said I still stand by my statement that any shop should be allowed to shut down for a "catch up day" if they are literally just bailing water with no end in sight. Of course those catch up days should not be once per month. I am talking like maybe every 3 or 6 months and only when something big happened to cause the backup. For example if a deployment of 250 people just came back I see nothing wrong with shutting down for a day to take care of their vouchers and pay, then open back up the next day. Of course those kind of decisions are never popular at it takes a leader not a manager to make that call.

BMHenson
08-21-2013, 01:56 PM
As an aircraft maintainer, I scheduled training days on non flying days, e.g. Saturday/Sunday and even then the purpose was to cover upcomming TCTOs or if we had a rash of pipeline students and needed to knock out CFETP requirements. Even after I retrained into Comm, we never closed for an entire day during the work week. I would however, try to dedicate the first two hours of Fridays work day to address training, e.g. NOTAMS, CFETP/CDC and weekend safety briefs. I don't think an entire day dedicated to training is necessary if your organized and manage your sections time well.

AERYCK13
08-21-2013, 02:09 PM
Training days are vital to mission accomplishment. MPF in particular. If they don't take the time to train at least once a week than their customer service would be atrocious.

Their customer service is atrocious!!!

AERYCK13
08-21-2013, 02:14 PM
Actually what happened was the Air Force Financial Services Center (AFFSC). When they stood the AFFSC they asked for the manning to run it one year prior to actually opening. They wanted these "experts" to have the process nailed down before they accepted our workload. So we lost the bodies long before we ever lost the workload. That would have been fine if MAJCOM had allowed us some leeway on metrics. The problem is that no one wanted to see red on a slide even though it was easily explainable. This lead to a situation where we were told by our awesome commander and E9 that we would still be meeting the main metrics no matter how we had to do it (similar to what FLAPS proposed "suck it up and work some overtime for the next few months"). The problem was complicated when the AFFSC had system issues and kept pushing our dates back. That meant instead of a few months to a year it went for almost 2 years.

After the AFFSC stood up things got even worse because they also had manning issues and the people that worked there would reject just about anything if they could. I saw one voucher was rejected because they couldn't tell if the zip code should be 97008 or 97oo8. I sent it right back and said do you really think it might be an O and not a zero in the zip code? BS like that screws both the finance office and the customer and it sadly happens all the time. With that being said I still stand by my statement that any shop should be allowed to shut down for a "catch up day" if they are literally just bailing water with no end in sight. Of course those catch up days should not be once per month. I am talking like maybe every 3 or 6 months and only when something big happened to cause the backup. For example if a deployment of 250 people just came back I see nothing wrong with shutting down for a day to take care of their vouchers and pay, then open back up the next day. Of course those kind of decisions are never popular at it takes a leader not a manager to make that call.

I'm glad to hear someone's doing something. All that my Finance office does is hand you the slip of paper with the website on it and tell you to do it yourself. They don't actually handle ANY paperwork. What's their excuse for a "training day?" What are they catching up on?

Class5Kayaker
08-21-2013, 04:21 PM
BRUWIN finally hooked a couple!! It's been a while. :)




Training days are vital to mission accomplishment. MPF in particular. If they don't take the time to train at least once a week than their customer service would be atrocious.

I'm in the same squadron as MPF and I can tell you that unless they are training at their house/dorm or in the smoke pit, they only do real training like once a month. The other days they just take a long lunch, go home early, or do nothing during the time they are closed. But I have noticed that there hasn't been as many complaints about lost documents or repeat visits for the same stuff as much as there use to be, so I guess they must train very well on that one day they actually train.




Training days are vital to mission accomplishment. MPF in particular. If they don't take the time to train at least once a week than their customer service would be atrocious.

Their customer service is atrocious!!!

20+Years
08-21-2013, 04:31 PM
Look here fellas... the AF is leading this culture of being closed for training. We observe "down days"...aka training days for safety, SAPR, or whatever Mr. AF feels is important at that time. Yup, just stop ALL operations and follow the bouncing ball. Whats a local training day gonna hurt?

And I have NEVER seen Medical shut down services for training. The patient always comes first.

Pullinteeth
08-21-2013, 05:15 PM
This concept needs to come to an end. It is one of the biggest waste of resources. I believe it was the Medical Groups that first starting do this years ago and then everyone jumped on board with it.

My first few years in...everyone was open for business from 0730-1630. In my unit at the time, you were not allowed to close. Even when there were picnics, commander calls, etc., someone was left behind...typically the standby guy or a couple people would tag in and out.

Can't have it both ways...either you were open for business or you had one person to man the phones. Can't have it both ways. What it sounds like you are saying is that you should be able to close your shop for picnics, Commander's call's, etc but no one else should be.... When I was dental we did exactly the same thing-left one or two people at the desk to man the phones-that DOESN'T mean we were open for business.

VFFTSGT
08-21-2013, 07:05 PM
Training days are helpful for some career fields. In mine we have a lot of deployable equipment and tasks that we don't do on a daily basis in our garrison job. So we need to keep proficient and ready to deploy. Yes sometimes this doesn't take a whole day, so the rest is filled with CBTs and stuff. But, we always have crews on standby in cases of emergency or urgent work.

If we didn't have one day a month for the entire squadron to do this, the shop NCOICs would still have to shut down their shops to conduct the training. So instead of having one of our 7-9 shops closed at different days throughout the month (which could give some the impression that our squadron is always closed for training) we pick one day that the shops may go to minimum manning to conduct our required training.

Do you think having deployed equipment to remain proficient on is special to your career field? Many have this and many don't close for training...2-3 personnel at a time train on it as needed.


The office I am talking about I was already working 0700-1900 6 days per week. Heck there was even one day where I came in at 0400 so I could get some things done before everyone else arrived. I know people always say just "work more overtime" but I can tell you that a good leader knows that is not the answer. If you had a plumbing leak in your house and the entire living room was full of water would you bring in guys to work overtime bailing or would you shut the water off for one day so you could fix the leave?


When work is too much to be accomplished in my shops...2-4 people pulled a full night shift to get caught up and/or do other work that otherwise could not be accomplished during the day.


Trust me on this one if finance is backed up on processing documents you are wasting your time stopping by anyways. Your document is just going to sit on someone's desk until they get all the other stuff off their desk. That means you run the risk of having it get lost. Also you have to remember that things like military pay have cutoff dates. We have to have any pay updates entered by the 23rd of the month in order for it to hit your paycheck on the 1st. If I close down on the 22nd to get all documents in it actually serves the customer much better even though they will complain about it.

And yet, finance still throws a fit when someone doesn't submit their voucher within 3-5 days.


Can't have it both ways...either you were open for business or you had one person to man the phones. Can't have it both ways. What it sounds like you are saying is that you should be able to close your shop for picnics, Commander's call's, etc but no one else should be.... When I was dental we did exactly the same thing-left one or two people at the desk to man the phones-that DOESN'T mean we were open for business.

No, what I said was my shops (in the past) always remained open, period...even when the squadron had picnics, commander's calls, etc. and we didn't even have these "training days. If something came up that was more than they can handle, they called the other people back. We were never closed during the duty day and never turned a "customer" away. Today, this doesn't happen...even in units I am in. Everyone closes for everything under the sun...hence the title training or some other bogus reason.

BENDER56
08-21-2013, 07:12 PM
BRUWIN finally hooked a couple!! It's been a while. :)

Yeah, but you'll notice they're both FNGs. The rest of us already know better.

So this is at least one good thing about having new blood on the Military Times forums.

20+Years
08-21-2013, 08:03 PM
Originally Posted by 20+Years
And I have NEVER seen Medical shut down services for training. The patient always comes first.


You're kidding right? Our clinic closes for training often.

Hell, I just hooked MM. Well, at the very least, he nibbled on the bait.

BRUWIN
08-22-2013, 03:36 AM
Their customer service is atrocious!!!

Only on training days...when they are unavailable because they are honing their MPF customer service skills.

Venus
08-22-2013, 03:55 AM
Only on training days...when they are unavailable because they are honing their MPF customer service skills.
"Sigh"
And they wonder why they get tagged Nonners.

TREYSLEDGE
08-22-2013, 07:16 AM
Do you think having deployed equipment to remain proficient on is special to your career field? Many have this and many don't close for training...2-3 personnel at a time train on it as needed.



I guess I need to be more specific and write 1000 word posts? I never said we were special, I said because we have a lot of deployable equipment we need time away from our daily responsibilities to train on it. In fact I wrote "in some career fields" in the first sentence so I was not trying to isolate my career field as the only one in this situation. I was using my career field as an example.

Also, I never said we close for training. If you reread my post I said we always have personnel available for urgent and emergency work and keep minimum manning in the shops.

If we only trained 2-3 people on a piece of equipment we would never be proficient, or we would have to conduct training nearly everyday for some specialties. A couple of our shops have nearly 30-40 different pieces of deployable equipment and systems that they must train on, exercise with and maintain in a ready to deploy status. As with everyone there are exceptions and differences to training days, times and requirements.

So hopefully I'm clear: We never close our squadron for unit training days, but monthly training days are needed.

imported_oih82w8
08-22-2013, 01:10 PM
"Lost" as in accidentally lost....or "lost" as in it was filed in a special cabinet called a file shredder?

We used to call the shredder "the encoder". Good luck putting whatever you file into it together again. :biggrin-new:

Pullinteeth
08-22-2013, 01:26 PM
No, what I said was my shops (in the past) always remained open, period...even when the squadron had picnics, commander's calls, etc. and we didn't even have these "training days. If something came up that was more than they can handle, they called the other people back. We were never closed during the duty day and never turned a "customer" away. Today, this doesn't happen...even in units I am in. Everyone closes for everything under the sun...hence the title training or some other bogus reason.

So what you are saying is that your shops are WAAAAY overmanned? If your shop can remain open and never turn a customer away with only one person there to man the phones, you obviously don't need more than one person in your shop. Did you submit that to the AF's money saving ideas website?

BOSS302
08-22-2013, 02:26 PM
No, what I said was my shops (in the past) always remained open, period...even when the squadron had picnics

You're a pretty intelligent guy, but I think mentioning that your squadron has the time/manning for picnics while simultaneously putting everyone else on blast for "shutting down" is not all too wise...

fufu
08-22-2013, 02:40 PM
You're a pretty intelligent guy, but I think mentioning that your squadron has the time/manning for picnics while simultaneously putting everyone else on blast for "shutting down" is not all too wise...

I'd say there a difference between one section shutting down to "catch up" on work vs a Sq-wide morale event.

BOSS302
08-22-2013, 02:46 PM
I'd say there a difference between one section shutting down to "catch up" on work vs a Sq-wide moral event.

Show me a squadron picnic that does anything for morale and I'll show you a magic trick.

fufu
08-22-2013, 02:48 PM
Show me a squadron picnic that does anything for morale and I'll show you a magic trick.

U got me. Mandatory fun event? Better?

BOSS302
08-22-2013, 02:57 PM
U got me. Mandatory fun event? Better?

Haha, that's a good one.

VFFTSGT
08-22-2013, 03:03 PM
You're a pretty intelligent guy, but I think mentioning that your squadron has the time/manning for picnics while simultaneously putting everyone else on blast for "shutting down" is not all too wise...

Apparently you didn't catch the past tense in the OP and the point I was making.... I am not comparing my unit to everyone else's. I am comparing what seemed like common practice many years ago and what seems like common practice today.

Again, I said my squadron/shop back then would not even close when there was a picnic, commander's calls, etc. much less for training. We were even required to stagger our lunch hours; today, shops and offices close for lunch. In today's Air Force, whole squadrons completely shut down for "official events" aka picnics. The point here is that we were always open during duty hours regardless of what was going on.

The units I have been assigned to in recent years are just as guilty as the others today; I've tried to put a stop to the closed for training in my unit recently but unfortunately the commander thinks it works and is a solution to preventing training problems. I guess showing him out of date MTP's, 30, 60, 90+ day non-progression, and having NCO's that don't even know what a CFETP is, is not evidence enough that it's not working.

My wife worked for a NAF (Non-appropriated funds) agency on base. You know when they had their picnics and luncheons? On the weekend when they weren't working.

Pullinteeth
08-22-2013, 04:53 PM
Apparently you didn't catch the past tense in the OP and the point I was making.... I am not comparing my unit to everyone else's. I am comparing what seemed like common practice many years ago and what seems like common practice today.

Again, I said my squadron/shop back then would not even close when there was a picnic, commander's calls, etc. much less for training. We were even required to stagger our lunch hours; today, shops and offices close for lunch. In today's Air Force, whole squadrons completely shut down for "official events" aka picnics. The point here is that we were always open during duty hours regardless of what was going on.

The units I have been assigned to in recent years are just as guilty as the others today; I've tried to put a stop to the closed for training in my unit recently but unfortunately the commander thinks it works and is a solution to preventing training problems. I guess showing him out of date MTP's, 30, 60, 90+ day non-progression, and having NCO's that don't even know what a CFETP is, is not evidence enough that it's not working.

My wife worked for a NAF (Non-appropriated funds) agency on base. You know when they had their picnics and luncheons? On the weekend when they weren't working.

So riddle me this Batman. What do you propose when there is mandatory training that is given on ONE day that must be given to all civilian and military personnel in a unit? Do you reccomend leaving the doors opne while everyone is gone? Do you reccomend disobeying a direct order and leaving someone there to answer phones?

imported_Shove_your_stupid_meeting
08-22-2013, 10:29 PM
Actually what happened was the Air Force Financial Services Center (AFFSC). When they stood the AFFSC they asked for the manning to run it one year prior to actually opening. They wanted these "experts" to have the process nailed down before they accepted our workload. So we lost the bodies long before we ever lost the workload. That would have been fine if MAJCOM had allowed us some leeway on metrics. The problem is that no one wanted to see red on a slide even though it was easily explainable. This lead to a situation where we were told by our awesome commander and E9 that we would still be meeting the main metrics no matter how we had to do it (similar to what FLAPS proposed "suck it up and work some overtime for the next few months"). The problem was complicated when the AFFSC had system issues and kept pushing our dates back. That meant instead of a few months to a year it went for almost 2 years.


Prior to that fiasco, I was told the career field's manning was reduced in the late 90s due to new systems that would significantly reduce the overall workload. That always seemed plausable to me considering how many new systems they rolled out over an 8-year span or so (ABSS, CRIS, Leave Web, MyPay, DTS, etc). Seems to me they got too small, too soon. In the years they were busy playing catch-up and getting bashed for it, I think we lost a little something in regards to job knowledge, mentorship, etc.


These days, I'll admit, I'm not real sure exactly what the issue is, although I do know we apparently can't handle travel comps without plugging numbers into a system to come up with our answers. :-/

SomeRandomGuy
08-23-2013, 04:57 PM
Show me a squadron picnic that does anything for morale and I'll show you a magic trick.

No Magic required. Here are 5 simple steps to plan a squadron picnic that builds morale.

1. Free admission for everyone paid for my squadron booster club
2. Event starts at noon release the shop at 1100 so people can change to civies if they wish.
3. Have people who wish to partake pitch in for a couple of kegs (have desiganted drivers arranged)
4. Treat it the same way you would a family outing. Have games that you would actually want to play.
5. Make the end time optional. As long as you show up and hang out for a few minutes you are free to leave whenever. If you want to leave go ahead you are released for the day.


This type of event allows people to unwind without feeling like they are forced to be there. Also without uniforms the conversation is much more free flowing. Might wantt o even make a rule that if someone brings up work they have to take a drink.

VFFTSGT
08-25-2013, 04:38 PM
When does maintenance tell ops they are closed for training?!

BOSS302
08-25-2013, 07:23 PM
So riddle me this Batman. What do you propose when there is mandatory training that is given on ONE day that must be given to all civilian and military personnel in a unit? Do you reccomend leaving the doors opne while everyone is gone? Do you reccomend disobeying a direct order and leaving someone there to answer phones?

Notice he has side-stepped your question...

Pullinteeth
08-27-2013, 02:49 PM
Notice he has side-stepped your question...

Shocker right?

Class5Kayaker
08-27-2013, 03:10 PM
Totally off-topic, but I can't create a new thread about it because of the issue I'm curious about:

Anyone else getting the "Own'Z by Federal" Screen when you try to click on any main forum (e.g. "Air Force," "In the News," etc.) or the home page? It's got a red devil graphic and everything.

Bourne, looks like the site got hacked. Maybe a disgruntled member from Banned Camp?

AERYCK13
08-27-2013, 03:16 PM
Totally off-topic, but I can't create a new thread about it because of the issue I'm curious about:

Anyone else getting the "Own'Z by Federal" Screen when you try to click on any main forum (e.g. "Air Force," "In the News," etc.) or the home page? It's got a red devil graphic and everything.

Bourne, looks like the site got hacked. Maybe a disgruntled member from Banned Camp?

Yep. Could this be the Anonymous action that they were talking about on here the other day?

SomeRandomGuy
08-27-2013, 03:16 PM
Totally off-topic, but I can't create a new thread about it because of the issue I'm curious about:

Anyone else getting the "Own'Z by Federal" Screen when you try to click on any main forum (e.g. "Air Force," "In the News," etc.) or the home page? It's got a red devil graphic and everything.

Bourne, looks like the site got hacked. Maybe a disgruntled member from Banned Camp?

Yeah I got the same thing a second ago. I guess maybe they were serious that some people threatened to hack this place.

Bourne
08-27-2013, 03:20 PM
:(
Ownzed.

Bunch
08-31-2013, 01:21 AM
In CE we are never closed for training... We close for beer and ribs!!

Desk Pilot
09-01-2013, 12:14 PM
I was at a base once where all the offices at the MPF would close at 1430 everyday "for training". To make things worse, during the hours where they would have the most customers (lunch hours), the customer service would be minimally manned. One almost had to plan a week out for any action to be accomplished. One of the worse MPFs I've ever had to deal with.

BOSS302
09-01-2013, 02:19 PM
I was at a base once where all the offices at the MPF would close at 1430 everyday "for training". To make things worse, during the hours where they would have the most customers (lunch hours), the customer service would be minimally manned. One almost had to plan a week out for any action to be accomplished. One of the worse MPFs I've ever had to deal with.

I find this hard to believe. If so, I am sure that the irritation and anger of the base populace eventually forced someone in the chain of command - Flight CC, Squadron CC, Group CC, even Wing CC - to change things around.

If not, then that's a failure that goes beyond the realm of the shitty MPF and points to larger problems at that base at that time.

BOSS302
09-01-2013, 02:22 PM
In CE we are never closed for training... We close for beer and ribs!!

Bullshit. If anything, CE will close for overcooked DECA hamburger patties caked in Lawry's seasoning or brats that always seem to be burned on the same exact side. I find it hilarious that in every CE squadron I've been in, almost everyone thinks of themselves as a "Master Chef" or a "Pit Master".

Then come squadron BBQ time, it is like watching a group of silverback gorillas discovering how to use fire and tools.

There will always be your one-offs who are absolute masters on the grill but they know better than to try to cook for the whole squadron.

As for me, I won't pretend - I suck at BBQing and will always be the guy who brings paper plates and Hawaiian bread...

BRUWIN
09-02-2013, 09:07 PM
I went to MPF after a training day once and it amazed me how on top of things they were that day. It was like night and day. As a result, I always wait to go to MPF until the day after a training day. Seriously, you guys should go then. Your problem will be resolved immediately.

SomeRandomGuy
09-02-2013, 09:12 PM
I was at a base once where all the offices at the MPF would close at 1430 everyday "for training". To make things worse, during the hours where they would have the most customers (lunch hours), the customer service would be minimally manned. One almost had to plan a week out for any action to be accomplished. One of the worse MPFs I've ever had to deal with.

By minimally manned do you mean half staffed? As in half of the people went to lunch from 1100-1200 and the other half 1200-1300. When are you proposing they should go to lunch? Or maybe they could eat at their desk while they help You?

Bunch
09-03-2013, 04:01 AM
Bullshit. If anything, CE will close for overcooked DECA hamburger patties caked in Lawry's seasoning or brats that always seem to be burned on the same exact side. I find it hilarious that in every CE squadron I've been in, almost everyone thinks of themselves as a "Master Chef" or a "Pit Master".

Then come squadron BBQ time, it is like watching a group of silverback gorillas discovering how to use fire and tools.

There will always be your one-offs who are absolute masters on the grill but they know better than to try to cook for the whole squadron.

As for me, I won't pretend - I suck at BBQing and will always be the guy who brings paper plates and Hawaiian bread...

This is all so true. But all in all we know how to have a good time.

Pullinteeth
09-03-2013, 01:22 PM
I find this hard to believe. If so, I am sure that the irritation and anger of the base populace eventually forced someone in the chain of command - Flight CC, Squadron CC, Group CC, even Wing CC - to change things around.

If not, then that's a failure that goes beyond the realm of the shitty MPF and points to larger problems at that base at that time.

Ah, but if they didn't have lunch during those hours, all the dorm rats would have to get partial BAH...

Boxkicker41
09-04-2013, 01:41 AM
My last Med Group Commander solved this problem by moving training days to Saturday's once a quarter. I respected his decision because he justified the need for patient appointments and access to care. My Airmen however, griped about it for weeks. "I can't believe we have to come in on a weekend and do training". Turned out we always hosted a luncheon on training day for the entire group in our warehouse and everyone seemed to enjoy it.

Desk Pilot
09-18-2013, 11:56 AM
By minimally manned do you mean half staffed? As in half of the people went to lunch from 1100-1200 and the other half 1200-1300. When are you proposing they should go to lunch? Or maybe they could eat at their desk while they help You?

They usually would have one person remain behind to hold down the fort while the rest went to lunch. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know (a) that you would have the majority of your customers during those hours and you need more than one person. There are ways to schedule their lunches to where they could still hit the chow hall (if needed) and meet the needs of the majority of their customers efficiently.

SomeRandomGuy
09-18-2013, 12:44 PM
They usually would have one person remain behind to hold down the fort while the rest went to lunch. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know (a) that you would have the majority of your customers during those hours and you need more than one person. There are ways to schedule their lunches to where they could still hit the chow hall (if needed) and meet the needs of the majority of their customers efficiently.

Ok, what are those ways of scheduling? The method I suggested is used by most customer service organizations. Half of your people go during the first lunch shift and the other half go during the 2nd lunch shift. Priority was normally given to dorm people on BAS for first shift but the dining hall was open 1100-1300. So tell me oh great deskpilot what mehtod do you know of to serve your customers better than simply splitting your personnel shifts for lunch? Also keep in mind that for some reason most people think the best time to handle their finance/personnel issue is during lunch. So you end up with twice as many customers during 1100-1300. Most of the problem could actually be solved by the customer by not coming at peak hours. As someone who worked finance for 6 years I can tell you the best time to walk in is about 1000 in the morning or around 1330 in the afternoon. People with major issues always stop by as soon as the place opens (they are ussually waiting when you unlock the door) and then everyone else seems to come at lunch. If you avoid those two times you hardly ever end up waiting.

Pullinteeth
09-18-2013, 01:11 PM
They usually would have one person remain behind to hold down the fort while the rest went to lunch. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know (a) that you would have the majority of your customers during those hours and you need more than one person. There are ways to schedule their lunches to where they could still hit the chow hall (if needed) and meet the needs of the majority of their customers efficiently.

Are you insane? So your "brilliant" solution is to leave one person to man the fort? You do of course realize that everyone else is at lunch as well and this is the time they try to get everything done right? So your solution is to leave ONE person there to handle the busiest time of day? :yikes:

SomeRandomGuy
09-18-2013, 01:48 PM
Are you insane? So your "brilliant" solution is to leave one person to man the fort? You do of course realize that everyone else is at lunch as well and this is the time they try to get everything done right? So your solution is to leave ONE person there to handle the busiest time of day? :yikes:

That reminds me of one time where I was left behind "holding down the fort" I think it was an exercise week and a bunch of our Airmen were detailed out. A couple other things came up and we basically had 3 people to work customer service. It was me (a SSgt at the time) and 2 A1Cs. At lunch I decided to send them while I tried to hold things down. I think about 20 people were signed in and I was doing my best to serve them as fast as possible. I actually logged into two seperate computers and while one customer would be filling out documents I would call another and help both at the same time. So in walks this Colonel and signs in. He looks around and sees 20 people waiting and me being the only person helping them. He walks up to the counter and rudely interupts my conversation with a customer (keep in mind we are discussing privacy act information) so he can ask to talk to the NCOIC. I inform him that I am the NCOIC and I will be with him in a second. A few minutes later I stop what I am doing to ask him what he wants. He tells me that I need to tell my supervisor to send some more people up (like I haven't thought of this or something). SInce I was in kind of a smartasss mood I said here "come with me sir" I walked him around the corner and show him the back part of our office that was literally empty. I said, "Sir, at the moment every avaliable person is already working the counter (me). So if you do not mind having a seat in the lobby I will be with you as soon as possible" ......................I could see Desk Pilot above being "that guy" who walks into customer service and thinks "I know what the solution is lets grab some more people from the back" It never occurs to these people that if we had more Airmen avaliable to help they already would have been up there.

Giant Voice
09-18-2013, 02:17 PM
Explain to me this lunch thing. In my former world, BAS people were "encouraged" to bring their lunch, eat in the break room at maximum speed humanly possible or faster, then get back out to work. Fortunantley, I never had to deal with customers.

I would imagine it would be tough to make everyone happy!

SomeRandomGuy
09-18-2013, 03:09 PM
Explain to me this lunch thing. In my former world, BAS people were "encouraged" to bring their lunch, eat in the break room at maximum speed humanly possible or faster, then get back out to work. Fortunantley, I never had to deal with customers.

I would imagine it would be tough to make everyone happy!

The problem is that many customer service areas are staffed with a mixture of Airmen, Contractors, and Civilians. For the Amn unless they are married they are on BAS meaning you have to allow them to go the dining facility or reimburse them for missed meals. With civilians and contractors it is pretty much in their agreement that they are allowed a lunch hour and I doubt we would have much luck taking it away. In order to keep things fair for everyone we just authorized everyone a lunch hour (I know what a nice thing to do right?). If we did the "highly encouraged to bring your lunch" thing the only people getting screwed would be married airmen, and supervisors. Everyone else would get a lunch and it would kind of suck chowing down your packed lunch in 5 minutes so you could rush back to counter in order for your civilian co-worker to head to Texas roadhouse to enjoy a prime rib. Personally, as a supervisor I never felt like taking lunch away from myself and my non BAS Airmen just so that the customer could have a shorter wait during peak times made any sense.