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What does the new air force inspection system' (AFIS) mean for you? air force inspection system' (AFIS) mean for you?

How many of you remember putting in countless extra hours of comprehensive preparation in the months leading up to an operational readiness inspection and/or a unit compliance inspection from your major command (MAJCOM) inspection team? Although the advent of the consolidated unit inspection generally reduced the frequency of inspections, we still held firm to the mindset of extensive ramp up and seemingly endless rehearsals.

No one can be faulted for the desire to ensure our squadron is well prepared for inspections. However, one might argue that sometimes the preparation came at the expense of time and energy that otherwise could have been utilized on our core financial duties. In a sense, we sacrificed mission readiness for inspection readiness. The new Air Force Inspection System (AFIS) will help us shift focus from MAJCOM inspections to our respective wing missions.

The wing-level portion of AFIS is the Commander's Inspection Program (CCIP). The intent of CCIP is to refocus our efforts on both our mission and compliance. It accomplishes these goals through a two-part process: self-assessment checklist inspections and inspections from the wing-level inspector general (with assistance from subject matter experts). The checklist portion of the CCIP is completed with the Management Internal Control Toolset (MICT).

Although MICT is a relatively new term, the concept should not be new to FMers. MICT is based on the concept of using self-inspection questions to validate compliance with regulations, instructions, etc., and to correct discrepancies. Our FM quality assurance managers have always performed these processes through a rigorous self-inspection program, discrepancy tracking files, and corrective action plans. In reality, we are simply standardizing the process and terminology we already have in place.

The second half of CCIP, the local inspection, is not radically different from our current processes. We will still have inspectors onsite to validate our performance. Local inspections can occur one of three ways: scheduled in advance, on short notice, or no-notice, thus ensuring we are always ready for an independent assessment of our financial management programs and processes.

The AFIS cycle will occur every 24 to 30 months, improving our overall mission capabilities and putting the responsibility for training, readiness, capability, and compliance on wing-level leadership, and by succession, on comptrollers and squadron commanders. With the old methodology, units were assessed based on a one-week snapshot and evaluated on how well we could prepare for an inspection. Under CCIP, inspectors will have a minimum two-year "photo album," providing a detailed historical view of our day-to-day mission readiness and compliance.

Although AFIS is not expected to fully integrate until October 2014, the 354th Fighter Wing is one of the first wings in Pacific Air Forces to undergo an inspection under the revamped CCIP program. Our experience with the new inspection system thus far has been very positive. We are encouraged by the notion of eliminating the need to ramp up the squadron for an inspection," period, and instead, are able to put our foci's back on training and our core capabilities of providing customer service and decision support

by SMSgt David Rice, PACAF


SMS David Rice is currently the superintendent of the 354th Comptroller Squadron at Eielson AFB.
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Author:Rice, David
Publication:Air Force Comptroller
Date:Sep 22, 2013
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