Army Distance Learning: Potential for Reducing Shortages in Army Enlisted Occupations

By Michael G. Shanley; Henry A. Leonard et al. | Go to book overview

Chapter Five
HOW DL CAN IMPROVE THE EFFECTIVENESS OF
CROSS-TRAINING AND MOS CONSOLIDATION

When we looked in Chapter Three at the generic strategies that the Army uses to reduce personnel shortages, we identified crosstraining and consolidation of MOSs as two options. Since both strategies attempt to produce more effective soldiers by making them more capable of performing a broader range of activities, we treat them here as one strategy for discussion purposes. With crosstraining, soldiers already proficient in one MOS are trained to perform related activities in another MOS, so that they can informally fill in for that other occupation when necessary. With MOS consolidation, MOSs that perform similar activities are formally combined into one occupation, and soldiers in each of the old MOSs are given additional training to become proficient in all aspects of the new MOS.

In this chapter we follow a similar approach to the one we used in discussing the reclassification strategy. We begin by discussing the cross-training/MOS consolidation process; we then turn to arguing for the feasibility of the two and for their usefulness in reducing personnel shortages. Then, we discuss how DL can enhance the effectiveness of the strategies. Finally, we discuss some potential forcewide benefits of using DL for cross-training and MOS consolidation.


THE PROCESS OF CROSS-TRAINING AND MOS
CONSOLIDATION

Cross-training and MOS consolidation work best in occupations with high overlapping functionality. In the 67T case, for example, there are six other occupations dealing with helicopter repairs. Consolidation or cross-training is clearly possible here. This is reinforced by

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