IPPS-A DELAYED YET AGAIN, AFFECTING PROMOTIONS FOR SOLDIERS
By Buddy Blouin
One of the issues the U.S. Army has is the lack of integration and organization among its systems. Though technology continues to evolve and advance the U.S. military as a whole, the challenge now becomes finding a way to have such systems integrated and collaborative with one another. This is where the Integrated Personnel and Pay System - Army (IPPS-A) comes into play. The technology is looking to help improve and modernize the efforts of those working in the Army Human Resources (HR) department. But so far, there have been issues and delays making the transition far from ideal.
What Is IPPS-A?The IPPS-A stands for Integrated Personnel and Pay System - Army, and helps the branch manage the many functions of its HR. This includes everything from helping Soldiers with their careers to storing valuable personal information securely. Furthermore, the Army IPPS-A system is not just to help line up promotions and manage data, but it also helps the Armed Force lower the costs associated with pay, create transparency for Soldiers, help keep IT costs down, and generally streamline HR across the board. From looking up pay information to eliminating over 300 interfaces and improving security, the IPPS-A is a very important step forward. But for now, it’s a continued string of failed launches that are annoying and counterproductive. Particularly, at a personal level for Soldiers looking to rise up the ranks.
Issues With the System Have Stalled Promotions for SoldiersThe delays to the IPPS-A are far from new but despite officials saying that there would be no impact on promotions, that has since been found out not to be the case. This means that promotions for Noncommissioned Officers (NCOs) and Officers beginning November 10, 2022, are affected. How these delays fully affect Soldiers, leadership, and structure are yet to be fully seen, but all is far from right. Ceremonies honoring such achievements may be receiving a different treatment, but the underlying issue within the Army persists.
Ceremonies, However, Won’t Stop Due To IPPS-A IssuesDespite the issues found with the IPPS A Army system, if there is one bright spot, though only in gesture, ceremonies for those advancing in their careers as Soldiers aren’t stopping. This means that the Army will allow units to pin on new ranks for NCOs and Officers that were already in line for a promotion. Payment for their promotion, however, won’t be so available. Yes, it’s coming, but it’ll be in the form of back pay. Presumably, this will occur whenever the system is sorted out and working properly. This isn’t expected to take too long as the Army National Guard is already using the new platform in full capacity, but there have already been delays and the release date is still missing as of this writing. It’s an interesting position for the branch to be in and an unfortunate one for Soldiers simply trying to do their jobs. February is the hopeful month for launch, but then again, so was January. Going back still, the legacy system tracking promotions was taken down in December 2022, which would make sense as the IPPS-A was to launch then. Or perhaps it was September 2022’s launch, or…well, you get the picture. The Army delaying its update to its largest HR system is nothing new. Whenever the IPPS-A, a sigh of relief is sure to be heard around the world from all of those involved.
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