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Maritime Logistics Community News : November 2009
10 NAVY SUPPLY NEWSLETTER SPRING 2009 WRITER CATEGORY SPONSOR By WOWTR Andy Hart The last six months have rolled by very quickly with a number of tasks being finalised. The total number of personnel in the branch has increased putting us in a much improved state than we were twelve months ago. There are a number of significant issues that have crossed my desk or have been discussed over the phone that have led to a deeper examination of where the community is heading. After many months of negotiations between Navy and Defence Support Group (DSG), 13 positions have been approved and transferred back to Navy. All commands have been notified with a request to have their Duty Statements updated to reflect their current roles and responsibilities. The Writer review has now been completed with a concept of the Smart Writer 2018. Feedback indicates most writers have read the report. If not, it can be found on the Head of Supply Community intranet side, under ‘Supply Advisory Council’. The report takes into account how the writer is used to best meet the requirements of the Navy and the ADF requirements in 2018. It takes into account the fundamental changes to military administration and personnel management, emerging NGN concepts and the changing responsibilities of DSG. Based on the Writer Review, the new Writer Training Continuum and the transfer of positions back into Navy, I anticipate some position changes to achieve the best functional structure in the present organisational climate. These changes will give a greater opportunity for newly promoted POWTRs to be posted as an Assistant Perso or as a Personnel Officer ashore before taking on the role as a Commanding Officer’s Secretary (COSEC) at sea. These shore positions permit Writers to gain experience, obtain knowledge and grow confidence to fulfill the demanding job requirements of the COSEC position in the seagoing environment. I ask all Writers to make sure that they have read all the documents that I have sent noting that this is provided to your Senior Sailors so that you can openly discuss your future. I, for one, do not have all the answers and I rely on your input to improve the branch and offer ideas. Enjoy the rest of the year and I hope to see many of you in my travels. COOK CATEGORY SPONSOR By WOCK Craig Nickels The Commercial Support Program (CSP) commenced in 1991 and was in fact the program that commenced market testing of Garrison Support Services (GSS). This approach to the delivery of GSS at this period in time was occurring around the globe in the international and multinational defence arena. In-house bids were also developed and compiled as part of the tender evaluation program. The initial outsourcing of catering services commenced at HMAS PENGUIN. The CSP was the forerunner to the Defence Efficiency Review (DER) which was then implemented via the Defence Reform Program (DRP) 1997. This may sound like ancient history and you may be thinking what does this have to do with me as an RAN CK in 2009. Well, now we have the Strategic Reform Program (SRP) and it promises to review and streamline processes and procedures within Defence. It will have an impact on the way we do business, this you can be sure. Many people have been charged with conceiving the phase, ‘change is the only constant’ so I will not try to quote an individual directly however, the sentiment of this phrase is evident everywhere, in life and in Defence. We must change, we must evolve, and we must strive to be the best iteration of ourselves and our organisation. The SRP will require each and everyone of us to consider how we work, individually and as part of our team, unit, directorate or ship. I hold great hope that the SRP will drive investigation of current shore Catering and scrutinise these holistically including the management model. The DRP greatly affected the employment of Supply personnel; all supply categories had to deal with changes to their employment roles and employment areas. The DRP achieved ‘cultural change’ with regard to catering procedures. CKs were instructed to no longer think of posting to specific bases but to consider posting to localities. Prior to the DRP, CKs managed the RAN catering and galley operations along with Stores Victualling (SV). There were many examples of a ‘free lunch’ being applied. Many work centres in establishments had their ‘ brew boat’ provided via the main galley. Sandwiches were supplied to messes on a ‘no cost’ basis, and there were other examples of this type of practice. However someone somewhere had to pay for these items to be made available. The notion of free brew boats or free platters of sandwiches to all CKs now is such an absurd and obscure suggestion that it would not be considered. The DRP imposed ‘cultural change’ to the mindset of all RAN CKs. ‘ A buck is a buck and the buck stops with you’. This was a difficult mind shift to grasp for many individuals who now had to provide their own brew boat or catering. A system of ‘user pays’ has definitely been firmly established within all work areas of the RAN and all RAN members understand that nothing comes for free. There is always an associated cost. Having had the DRP mature over the past decade and achieve many of its objectives, the SRP will now seek further efficiencies, and so it should. In-house options should once again be developed and investigated to see if savings can be achieved, while balancing the needs of the individual and the organisation.