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alwyn2d

Increasing SUPT Commitment

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For whatever reason, I never hear the proposal of increasing the pilot commitment. Let's say we move it to 15 years or even 20. Of course a number of people will say hell no but I wouldn't be surprised if the AF reached their SUPT recruiting goals. In the 1950s, it was 3 yrs and a degree wasn't a requirement. Then in the 60s, a degree requirement was established and  4 yrs for SUPT. In 70s to 5yrs then to 6yrs. 80s went to 8yrs and in the 90s to 10 years. The AF NEVER has a problem of recruiting pilots. Keeping them in during an airline hiring boom is the primary issue. 

One other major problem in keeping pilots is that most are single when joining and marry during their commitment. The spouse becomes a key player in their decision making, and the family comes in second place during his/her military career development unfortunately. In addition to a number of changes in the near future in helping retention, they need to seriously consider increasing the pilot commitment even to 20 years. You can't logically compete with the airline industry in quality of life and income for pilots. If the USAF wants to meet their pilot numbers, increase the commitment. Enough young people will bite on the increased SUPT commitment especially after viewing Top Gun 2 Maverick. 

 

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So trap young people who don’t know fully what they are getting into in a 20 year commitment instead of fixing problems?  I truly hope you aren’t on any staffs or near anyone with an ear to listen.

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This is satire, right? (check the last sentence)

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The AF already did a survey 2-3 years ago looking at increasing the UPT commitment to 15 years of mixed active/reserve time.

1) that's a crazy long time. The AF's problem doesn't get solved if people are unhappy and forced to stay in. Might solve the numbers, but efficiency/effectiveness would tank as people start min running everything.
2) I read mixed commitment as the ability to RIF people while keeping them on the hook. Budget is tight? Involuntarily kick people to the reserves, pay them less but expect nearly the same amount of work.

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Awful idea.  Instead of fostering a culture where people are excited to come and do one of the best jobs in the world - the Air Force should trap people in so they can’t leave? 

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Increasing the commitment is a terrible idea. As was stated before, it causes bitterness and resentment which in turn lead to a lack of motivation and productivity. The answer is really quite simple. Eliminate non-flying deployments (I have now done two where there was no reason to have a pilot filling the position). Cut the queep, even if it means hiring an extra 5-10 support personnel per squadron. Increase our pay so that it at least approaches what the airlines offer (with no ADSC). If we were pulling in say 200k as an O-4 and 250 as an O-5, there would be a lot fewer people running for the door. Guess what? Over nine years past your initial ADSC, that would cost the Air Force an extra ~500k (over current bonus amounts) to get a guy to stay til 20. That seems like a fvcking bargain compared to producing an extra 1000 pilots a year.

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8 hours ago, alwyn2d said:

For whatever reason, I never hear the proposal of increasing the pilot commitment. Let's say we move it to 15 years or even 20. Of course a number of people will say hell no but I wouldn't be surprised if the AF reached their SUPT recruiting goals. In the 1950s, it was 3 yrs and a degree wasn't a requirement. Then in the 60s, a degree requirement was established and  4 yrs for SUPT. In 70s to 5yrs then to 6yrs. 80s went to 8yrs and in the 90s to 10 years. The AF NEVER has a problem of recruiting pilots. Keeping them in during an airline hiring boom is the primary issue. 

One other major problem in keeping pilots is that most are single when joining and marry during their commitment. The spouse becomes a key player in their decision making, and the family comes in second place during his/her military career development unfortunately. In addition to a number of changes in the near future in helping retention, they need to seriously consider increasing the pilot commitment even to 20 years. You can't logically compete with the airline industry in quality of life and income for pilots. If the USAF wants to meet their pilot numbers, increase the commitment. Enough young people will bite on the increased SUPT commitment especially after viewing Top Gun 2 Maverick. 

 

Do this, and you'll find pilots doing some creative things to get out.  Like failing 4 PT tests in a row.

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I’d advocate the exact opposite of what the OP is saying. In today’s job market (airlines and military aside) people are hopping around like crazy to advance... and you want to increase the indentured servitude?

Lets think outside the box here and consider cutting the UPT commitment back, instead of increasing it. Hell, talk to an old timer and tell them you’re now locked into 10yrs post winging. They’ll give the “oh Jesus” face and mention how that’s an awfully long time compared to when they were in.

Cut the queep, restructure the bureaucracy and reduce the UPT ADSC. Create a culture that makes people want to stay, and place the barrier to entry lower (shorter UPT ADSC) so people can chase a dream without missing 10 years of their lives. Then sit back and watch what happens. I’ll bet you there won’t be a shortage, and you’ll get a much better product.

I know, I’m better off winning the Powerball.

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Not to mention the 15 year ADSC won't really matter. We're going to produce so many pilots in the mid 20s that we can deal with crappy retention

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Oh geez, imagine the situation the Air Force would find itself in when it has someone who wants to leave, can't quit, can't really be fired, and in fact will probably just end up getting promoting to O-4 (and dare I say O-5) as part of a 100% opportunity?

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38 minutes ago, AHeavyGuy said:

Oh geez, imagine the situation the Air Force would find itself in when it has someone who wants to leave, can't quit, can't really be fired, and in fact will probably just end up getting promoting to O-4 (and dare I say O-5) as part of a 100% opportunity?

Sounds like I stroll in around 9, take a 2 hour lunch, and head to the gym around 2:30.

 

Edited by nunya

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2 hours ago, pawnman said:

Do this, and you'll find pilots doing some creative things to get out.  Like failing 4 PT tests in a row.

I've been pondering ideas like this a lot lately (not saying I plan on failing a PT test anytime soon), but what's the incentive for someone who wants out and/or doesn't really care whether they stay in/get out and thus isn't concerned about rank...what's the incentive to do well/pass a PT test?  Sure it's good to stay in shape, but those people would workout even if there wasn't a PT test.  Failing a PT test is purely administrative.

So if the AF is consistently working you 10-12 hours a day, some weekends, deploying you, etc, why workout if that's not your thing and you don't care about advancing your military career?  And if someone brings up core values then I would argue the AF hasn't met their part of that obligation.  

Again, just some thoughts from someone who has been in quite a while...

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I've been pondering ideas like this a lot lately (not saying I plan on failing a PT test anytime soon), but what's the incentive for someone who wants out and/or doesn't really care whether they stay in/get out and thus isn't concerned about rank...what's the incentive to do well/pass a PT test?  Sure it's good to stay in shape, but those people would workout even if there wasn't a PT test.  Failing a PT test is purely administrative.
So if the AF is consistently working you 10-12 hours a day, some weekends, deploying you, etc, why workout if that's not your thing and you don't care about advancing your military career?  And if someone brings up core values then I would argue the AF hasn't met their part of that obligation.  
Again, just some thoughts from someone who has been in quite a while...

I’ve wondered what that would look like myself. I don’t think I could do it, but I wonder how painful management would make it for someone who committed to that plan.

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1 hour ago, HeloDude said:

So if the AF is consistently working you 10-12 hours a day, some weekends, deploying you, etc, why workout if that's not your thing and you don't care about advancing your military career?  And if someone brings up core values then I would argue the AF hasn't met their part of that obligation.  

With a few separate details, this was me. I really didn’t care to advance my military career, told my commander I planned to get out, asked to be a line IP at a UPT base, and was subsequently passed over for Major. The rumor mill went crazy as I deployed to Tampa for 7 months in the middle of it (“he told the commander to fuck off...) The amount of friends who privately expressed envy was shocking and kind of hilarious.

In conclusion, it can happen with the right commander and right assignment. Incredibly thankful for the opportunities of the past, incredibly stoked to be out and loving life. Risky move, but knew I couldn’t stomach another 10 years. No regrets. 

Edited by xaarman
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16 hours ago, alwyn2d said:

Enough young people will bite on the increased SUPT commitment especially after viewing Top Gun 2 Maverick. 

 

Out of 250K sperm cells, you were the fastest one huh? Only if Plan B was a requirement. 

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8 hours ago, AHeavyGuy said:

Oh geez, imagine the situation the Air Force would find itself in when it has someone who wants to leave, can't quit, can't really be fired, and in fact will probably just end up getting promoting to O-4 (and dare I say O-5) as part of a 100% opportunity?

Make it say "doesn't want to leave, won't quit" and that describes 69% of the GS workforce. The AF gets a shit product for way too much money with these useless individuals. Theyll get the same shit product for way to much money with an indentured pilot force who stops giving zero fucks at year 10 of 20.

Edited by brabus
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As I sit here on the can this morning (oh, the irony) writing this, the OP had a -22 downvote rating...10 of which came from the original post in the thread. 

Well done!

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On 6/12/2018 at 7:31 AM, alwyn2d said:

For whatever reason, I never hear the proposal of increasing the pilot commitment. Let's say we move it to 15 years or even 20. Of course a number of people will say hell no but I wouldn't be surprised if the AF reached their SUPT recruiting goals. In the 1950s, it was 3 yrs and a degree wasn't a requirement. Then in the 60s, a degree requirement was established and  4 yrs for SUPT. In 70s to 5yrs then to 6yrs. 80s went to 8yrs and in the 90s to 10 years. The AF NEVER has a problem of recruiting pilots. Keeping them in during an airline hiring boom is the primary issue. 

One other major problem in keeping pilots is that most are single when joining and marry during their commitment. The spouse becomes a key player in their decision making, and the family comes in second place during his/her military career development unfortunately. In addition to a number of changes in the near future in helping retention, they need to seriously consider increasing the pilot commitment even to 20 years. You can't logically compete with the airline industry in quality of life and income for pilots. If the USAF wants to meet their pilot numbers, increase the commitment. Enough young people will bite on the increased SUPT commitment especially after viewing Top Gun 2 Maverick. 

 

I bet your very active in your Homeowner's Association and was the kid who always reminded the teacher they forgot to assign homework on Friday afternoons. 

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