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Dobbins first to test system for documenting flight information.

The 94th Airlift Wing at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia, was the first unit in the Air Force to test a new system for documenting flight information.

A team from Air Force Reserve Command headquarters at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, traveled to Dobbins the week of Sept. 30 to test the new mobile mission kit. The kit, which the Air Force estimates could save the service at least $19 million in man-hours, is an application installed on a tablet device that enables flight crews to enter all of the information they are normally required to fill out on an Air Force Form 781, otherwise known as a flight log.

"Dobbins was chosen, first, because of its proximity to AFRC and because the leadership of the 22nd Air Force (also located at Dobbins) and the 94th were very supportive," said Col. Paul Webb, chief of the Mobility Operations Division at the command's headquarters. "However, the more involved reason is because it is a C-130 base, and the C-130 is a grease-board, analog culture rather than a digital culture."

Webb said the best way to test the system is to take a culture that is used to being analog and bringing it into the digital culture.

Tech. Sgt. Susan Robinson of the 700th Airlift Squadron at Dobbins said it currently takes about four hours to fill out and process a single AF Form 781.

"You fill out the form and hand it to someone who then has to enter the data, not once or twice but three or four times," Webb said. "If you enter it once in the MMK, it should be up in all the data bases."

And the four hours per form applies only if there are not any mistakes, said Staff Sgt. Chantel Benjamin of the 700th AS. Benjamin explained since Reservists work only part time, the person who knows how to fix what's wrong may not be readily available, so hours can turn into days before the mistakes are fixed.

The new kit connects various systems together, enabling the app to pull whatever information it needs to process the form. Also, the app automatically performs mathematical functions, eliminating the potential for human error. And it automatically shares data with other documents, eliminating the need to enter the same information multiple times.

Individual users are only given access to areas where they are qualified to provide the required information, and if an error does occur, the MMK flags it immediately for correction.

The app reflects crew members' pay status and the roles they play in a flight, so flyers are able to be paid quickly and accurately.

One added benefit beyond the user level is the MMK stores all data for easy access, allowing the command to provide accurate information to Congress.

"When the AFRC commander goes and testifies (before members of Congress)--where he is competing for dollars against other major command commanders--he will have empirical data he can use to support and articulate his arguments," Webb said.

AFRC will continue its testing of the MMK in the coming months. Test sites will include Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina; MacDill Air Force Base, Florida; Westover ARB, Massachusetts; and Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey. (Staff Sst. Daniel Phelps, 94th A W public affairs)

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Title Annotation:ROUND the RESERVE
Publication:Citizen Airman
Date:Dec 1, 2015
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