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CHIPS Articles: Q&A with Capt. Michael S. Murphy

Q&A with Capt. Michael S. Murphy
Sea Warrior (PMW 240) Program Manager
By CHIPS Magazine - October-December 2009
Q: The Career Management System/Interactive Detailing application is Web-based, can you talk about the technology used?

A: CMS/ID is hosted in the SPAWAR Atlantic New Orleans Office Shared Services environment using Unix-Sun Solaris and Windows 2000 operating systems in a virtual machine operating environment. It was developed using HTML, Dyno Script, Visual Basic, JAVA, Jboss, EJBs (Enterprise JavaBeans — a database query language) and Apache Web Server. The database is Oracle 10.2 ashore and SQL/Server afloat.

Q: Can deployed Sailors access CMS/ID?

A: Yes. Sailors on ships who have Internet connectivity, either pierside or while at sea, have access to CMS/ID. In addition, CMS/ID in a disconnected mode is deployed on nine ships to evaluate the viability of non-Internet access. They are the USS Pinckney (DDG 91), USS Gary (FFG 51), USS Donald Cook (DDG 75), USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53), USS Nimitz (CVN 68), USS Ponce (LPD 15), USS Jarrett (FFG 33), USS Antietam (CG 54) and USS Laboon (DDG 58).

On these ships, Sailors have connectivity to an afloat version of CMS/ID, essentially mirroring the ashore version, where they can review all the same data they would see on the Internet version. They can make applications and update duty preferences, just as on the Web version. Once Sailors update applications and personal information, the data replicates to the CMS/ID system ashore via Distance Support servers hosted at the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Crane, Indiana.

Q: Is CMS/ID easy to use?

A: CMS/ID is relatively easy to use. Command counselors can demonstrate how to use CMS/ID, plus there are CMS/ID QuickStart guides and job performance aids available to help familiarize users. Also, if users have questions, they can always ask their career counselor or contact the CMS/ID help desk toll free at (800) 537-4617 or DSN 647-7070.

Q: Is training available?

A: Yes. Many Sailors learn how to use CMS/ID through training at their local commands. In addition, CMS/ID is part of the command career counselor school curriculum that equips counselors to train their people.

CMS/ID training is also conducted at other schools and symposiums. Online, the CMS/ID page on the Navy Personnel Command Web site has links to training aids such as the CMS/ID QuickStarts, User Guides and Fact Sheets.

The CMS/ID page under the Career Management tab on Navy Knowledge Online, on both the Internet and afloat versions, also provides a full range of training links and tutorials.

Q: Is there help desk support?

A: Sailors can get support by contacting the Navy Personnel Command Customer Support Center in Millington, Tennessee, toll-free at (866) U-ASK-NPC or (866) 827-5672, Monday through Friday, 0700 to 1900 Central Standard Time, or by e-mailing CSCMAILBOX@NAVY.MIL.

The NPC Customer Service Center is a leading-edge contact center providing support to Sailors and their families around the world. In addition, Sailors can contact the Global Distance Support Center (GDSC) — the fleet’s single point of entry for assistance that provides guaranteed resolution for any question, any time. Contact the GDSC toll-free at (877) 418-6824 or e-mail help@anchordesk.navy.mil. The GDSC Web site, called Anchor Desk, provides useful information and is posted at www.anchordesk.navy.mil/.

Q: Do the Navy Military Personnel Distribution Systems (NMPDS) applications supported by the PMW 240 Sea Warrior program have a similar look and feel?

A: The applications are Internet-based and have a common Web application look and feel. This said, we have a significant amount of work ahead of us to give all the Sea Warrior program applications a similar look and feel. This is due to the fact that until the Sea Warrior program was established, at the direction of ASN RDA [Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition], these systems were managed by different functional and technical organizations with separate funding lines and design and development processes.

[The] Sea Warrior program will, over time, and at logical points in system life cycles, bring these systems to a point where their use is essentially seamless from an access and look and feel perspective. Make no mistake that we understand the 'ease of use' issue and are doing everything we can to make it easy for Sailors to manage their careers and jobs on Sea Warrior program-maintained systems.

Q: When do career counselors get involved?

A: CMS/ID and other career management systems are tools that help commands and Sailors manage their careers and do their jobs. From the perspective of a career counselor, nothing changed relative as to when they should get involved. Their engagement should begin the moment a Sailor checks on board.

What has changed, with 'Sailor Apply' in CMS/ID, is that CCCs no longer have to submit applications on behalf of their shipmate — though they are still able to do so, as are detailers. CCCs should still be engaged on doing what they do best — counseling Sailors on career choices.

Schaumburg, Ill. (June 16, 2009) Capt. Michael S. Murphy, Sea Warrior program manager, (PEO EIS/PMW 240), delivers a Navy Career Tools progress report to the Navy Counselors Association 21st Annual Symposium. U.S. Navy photo MC1 Terence K. Ferguson.
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