Army Must Focus on Talent Management
The Army is engaged in a battle for talent.
That’s what members of a personnel readiness and modernization panel said at AUSA’s Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C. Seven participants, including U.S. Military Academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Darryl A. Williams, appeared on the panel on the closing day of the meeting.
Noting that the Army’s greatest asset is its people, the service must be “ready today, more lethal tomorrow through talent management,” said Lt. Gen. Thomas C. Seamands, deputy Army chief of staff for personnel.
The Army’s manpower challenge is multifold, panelists agreed. In a time when a large portion of young Americans are unqualified for military service—primarily due to obesity—the Army must compete for those who do qualify.
“Every corporation is after the same people we’re after,” said Marshall M. Williams, acting assistant secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs. “In a competitive environment, we need to adjust” how the Army acquires talented people.
Some changes in the works include bringing in people with expertise and assigning them a higher rank than they could expect to have as a first-time officer, for example, or extending age limitations in certain positions.
“We will continue to be the envy of the world if we continue to recruit the best talent,” Williams said. “I know we can do it, and we will.”
—Susan Katz Keating for AUSA