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Minnesota National Guard
Air Force Every Dollar Counts campaign inspires change

Minnesota National Guard During the month of May, Airmen were asked to submit cost effective ideas by Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen Larry O Spencer They did just that and submitted more than 11,000 cost-reducing ideas during the "Every Dollar Counts" campaign The program gave military and civilian, active, Guard and Reserve the opportunity to submit ideas directly to the "Airmen Powered by Innovation" Web site The month-long Web site was set up specifically for this campaign

A 16-person Airman Innovation Operations Center was established and manned 24 hours a day The staff took ideas in blog format and gave real time feedback to the people who submitted ideas

"The evaluation process is quite impressive," said Spencer "Once offices of primary responsibility have been identified, final disposition will be determined for each submission When a suggestion is approved and implemented, the ideas will then be cross-fed across Air Staff, major commands, and wings to generate cost savings Air Force-wide"

According to Spencer, of all the ideas, 38 percent affect personnel policy, 23 percent involved logistics and installation support and 11 percent recommended changes in information technology "Recommended changes in personnel ranged from eliminating enlisted performance reports for chief master sergeants, (we're giving that serious scrutiny now) to suggesting Airmen remain at permanent change of station locations longer," said Spencer

One of the innovations to come from this need to save money is to streamline the idea process Spencer said that he had a small team examining the current idea programs Their task focused on four areas: consolidating and streamlining the processes, decreasing the cycle time from submission to approval, increasing the effectiveness of harvesting ideas that generate tangible savings and increasing replication of approved ideas across multiple locations

"Early progress updates indicate a promising new innovation idea process that will be more responsive to submitters, and is expected to generate a higher percentage of approved and implemented concepts," said Spencer

The Air Force is planning to rollout a revamped "Innovative Development through Employee Awareness and Productivity Enhancing Capital Investment" program using the recently developed concepts They are taking a 30-day break on processing ideas while they stand up the new program

In the interim, ideas can be submitted at the following website: https://ipdsrandolphafmil "I encourage you to keep thinking about how we can accomplish our mission faster, better and cheaper," said Spencer "Today's fiscal constraints are the tightest our Air Force has experienced in many years"

July 12, 2013
by Army Sgt Johnny Angelo
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs

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