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ImNotARobot

Military members may* be overpaid

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34 minutes ago, ThreeHoler said:

Link that isn’t Apple News please?


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TLDR: military pay raises over the last few years (that don’t typically even keep up with inflation btw) are probably unfounded because it appears we are paying people more to do the same work (if you ignore that they have axed a ton of manpower over the course of that time and it’s constantly “do more with less”). Some people think there should be productivity data to back up pay raises...[in a business that isn’t defined by productivity and is hemorrhaging talent in some areas]

 

edit: https://www.military.com/daily-news/2019/12/20/us-troops-may-be-overpaid-new-study-finds.html

Found. Also, similar opinion, different think tank:

https://defense360.csis.org/bad-idea-paying-servicemembers-more-to-do-the-same-amount-of-work/

Edited by SurelySerious
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TLDR: military pay raises over the last few years (that don’t typically even keep up with inflation btw) are probably unfounded because it appears we are paying people more to do the same work (if you ignore that they have axed a ton of manpower over the course of that time and it’s constantly “do more with less”). Some people think there should be productivity data to back up pay raises...[in a business that isn’t defined by productivity and is hemorrhaging talent in some areas]
 
edit: https://www.military.com/daily-news/2019/12/20/us-troops-may-be-overpaid-new-study-finds.html
Found. Also, similar opinion, different think tank:
https://defense360.csis.org/bad-idea-paying-servicemembers-more-to-do-the-same-amount-of-work/

Thanks for fixing the link SS.

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Dumb. Talk about being overpaid... You can get paid to write stuff like this?

If they want to be taken seriously they need to compare apples to apples. Pilots to pilots for example. Then on top of that factor in additional duties outside job descriptions, responsibilities and obligations that are military unique, time spent on the clock, and cost of constant moves and other variables.

I actually saw this on Facebook first and a brand new Marine commented saying, “Yeah the military is a huge joke. We get way overpaid to do the same jobs as other people. It’s easy and good.” At first I thought it was a bit unbelievable, but then I realized that he probably is getting paid more to clean latrines than his counterpart on the outside. Sadly, I’ve met many folks that think that’s all we ALL do (that and kill babies) even with the rise in support for the military over the past decades.

Then there’s the yokels who say, “I’d do this job for free!” Who are probably single without families (because I don’t know a spouse who would allow that, or hungry kid mouths for that matter), have clearly never taken a finance class, and have apparently not considered that retirement and medical bills will happen at some point, and come to some unexpectedly, and often earlier than desired. I actually heard this from an O-6 once when referencing the pilot bonus... so, at least we have people who can’t wrap their heads around basic life and financial planning in charge of planning our wars and future strategy.

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As a LT I was barely making over minimum wage, all while married, spending 1.5 yrs away from home, and doing shit that was hazardous to my life expectancy. The manager at the restaurant I worked at in high school was making more than me. And that’s as an officer. Not complaining, but pointing out how ludicrous this article is.
Then again, if they specifically were talking about the non-support group that spends 25 hrs week actually working, but work is defined as fucking it away whole sale with little effort attached, they’d be on to something. 

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1 hour ago, K_O said:

Pilots to pilots for example.

They’d find the military is not even close to 70%.  More like 40%.
 

10 year AF pilot, left seat C-17 vs 10 year major airline guy, left seat MD-11.

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Ops are probably not overpaid....go check out the support sections on your base and I think an argument could be made that some are overpaid, some shouldn’t even be employed.

 

I was in an office last week that looked over staffed and most people are surfing the internet or playing on their phones.

 

Don’t get me started on deployed ops.

 

 

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1 hour ago, di1630 said:

Ops are probably not overpaid....go check out the support sections on your base and I think an argument could be made that some are overpaid, some shouldn’t even be employed.

 

I was in an office last week that looked over staffed and most people are surfing the internet or playing on their phones.

 

Don’t get me started on deployed ops.

 

 

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No one in mx ever wants to say it but besides crew chiefs all the specialist sections are probably over staffed which leaves, like you said, half the shop doing nothing and getting paid for it. I’m sure its a million times worse in other support functions.
 

But common sense leadership doesn’t seem to exist anymore so we have these completely useless tracking systems that only see fudged work numbers and not the real picture and we make decisions based on bullshit numbers. I only have first hand experience of this type of management in the MX field but I would bet a lot of money this is how decisions are made across the AF as a whole. Over analysis with bullshit data.

So in summary, ya a shit ton of the AF is overpaid and the remaining people are underpaid.

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On 12/22/2019 at 8:34 AM, nunya said:

They’d find the military is not even close to 70%.  More like 40%.
 

10 year AF pilot, left seat C-17 vs 10 year major airline guy, left seat MD-11.

As I look at going on some orders prior to our deployment, it's quite amazing at the difference.  As a 18 year O-5 and 6 year WB FO, it's ~37% cut, but that doesn't figure in the tax benefit of BAH/BAS.  If I were on the big bonus it would be about a 24% cut.  

 

30 minutes ago, jonlbs said:

No one in mx ever wants to say it but besides crew chiefs all the specialist sections are probably over staffed which leaves, like you said, half the shop doing nothing and getting paid for it. I’m sure its a million times worse in other support functions.

Must not be too overstaffed as our base just got hit with 25+ 6 month individual involuntary mobilizations (mostly MX, but a few LRS) to the desert.  They're mostly SNCOs and a few MX officers, who will be going over to run shops at various bases in the AOR.  Most are going to run shops that are currently being run by other Guard guys since the AD can't effectively manage their force.  I've seen plenty of 6 month individual mobs in SFS and our Red horse guys, but in my short 18 years in the ANG I've never seen it with MX.  I would agree though that some may be overpaid while other are severely underpaid.

The real shitty part is they'll all be getting home as we are leaving on our deployment, so we're losing LOTS of our best MX NCOICs when we need them most in our squadron deployment.  Based on the timing/dwell, we could very well lose them for our next deployment if they choose not to waive dwell.  In the mean time, we'll likely have more 6 month individual mobs drops, and lose them as well, further perpetuating the downward spiral.  It won't take much of that before we start losing our top talent who say fuck this, I have my 20 militarily and can go Title 5 or find similar paying gigs on the outside.  The AD is doing its level best to kill what has made the ANG so great in retaining amazing talent.

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43 minutes ago, SocialD said:

The AD is doing its level best to kill what has made the ANG so great in retaining amazing talent.

Nail on the head. I should’ve prefaced it with my 5 years guard (baby years) I never saw any problems and before going reserve everything seemed so efficient and managed properly. The moment I started working with AD all I could think was WTF is going on?!

Been a few years since but I’d hope the guard is still holding strong.

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So in summary, ya a shit ton of the AF is overpaid and the remaining people are underpaid.

I remember 6+ years ago moving to the wing HQ for my attached job. Couldn’t believe how unemployed half the people were. Those doing work were mostly doing irrelevant tasks to justify their job and career.

I bet we could cut ~25% of the force with little degradation of the actual mission.

I say actual mission because most of the support functions just support themselves and call it the mission.


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2 hours ago, di1630 said:

I bet we could cut ~25% of the force with little degradation of the actual mission.

Probably, but don’t give anyone any bright ideas, because I don’t think we can trust them to cut the right 25%.

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I bet we could cut ~25% of the force with little degradation of the actual mission.

 

If that's the case, my gut says we're manned about right. Pretty much every unit I've been in limits leave to 10%. Throw in schools/TDYs and individual deployments, and a unit that can do the same with less (at least on paper) when everyone is home now really can't do their mission without degradation in reality given all the other things that pull people away from home station.

 

Or I guess you can assume no one takes leave, and investing in your people through sending them to school/trainings/upgrades/etc isn't important.

 

That's not too say we can't trim the fat; but the AF needs to take a hard look at where it places people. Having just enough people to do the job means there isn't enough people to always be fully mission capable. And this is where many of the additional duties come from, jobs that were cut and duties folded into someone else's job.

 

ETA:. Oh and we tried cutting a large portion of the force in the great RIF of 2014-that didn't work out so well, and we're still digging out of that hole

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If that's the case, my gut says we're manned about right. Pretty much every unit I've been in limits leave to 10%. Throw in schools/TDYs and individual deployments....,

I’m talking 25% of support. Not ops people. I’ve deployed numerous times the last few years, I was appalled at the support-self-licking ice cream cone I saw. It’s bad at home station also when you pull the curtain back on some of the support agencies then look across the flight line at their peers in rank.



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I’ve definitely seen it on deployments as well. Room full of fat base ops airmen distracted by morale drive movies that would only help us when directly and loudly engaged. Compare that with the Marines manning Kadena base ops that snapped to attention and almost seemed embarrassed that they didn’t have enough to do.

There are two different Air Force cultures; we have too many of one and not enough of the other.

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On a related topic, here's a link to a website that has mapped out all of the public employees who make more than $95K, with names and job titles:

https://www.openthebooks.com/maps/?Map=90001&MapType=Pin

As to military pay, it's clearly imbalanced between those who deserve what they're paid, or more, and those whose job doesn't command the pay and benefits they receive.  The very few times I've spoken with someone who held the view that military members are paid "too much" or "a ton", I usually ask them, if it's such good pay, why didn't they join?  I think once I got the medically unable reason, but the other couple times the person admits "well, when you put it that way..."

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11 minutes ago, otsap said:

if it's such good pay, why didn't they join?

It's my go-to rejoinder when I hear someone complain about the great health insurance I get from Tricare.

I usually give them the math on how many years of my career I've spent deployed.....

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