The Army’s new human resource system, the Integrated Personnel and Pay System-Army, or IPPS-A, is making military pay issues a remnant of the past for the Army National Guard.
On April 20, the Guard achieved a 100% pay transaction accuracy rate on 2,000 transactions, showcasing the system’s ability to service Soldiers quickly and accurately. IPPS-A Release 2 has been live with members of the Guard since March 2020. To date, IPPS-A has processed more than 2 million pay transactions at a 99.2% accuracy rate.
“The reliability to provide pay means Soldiers are getting paid the right amount in a timely manner, every time,” said Lt. Col. Rebekah Lust, Functional Management Division deputy chief. “IPPS-A is doing what it's designed to do: improve the lives of Soldiers while providing financial stability for Soldiers and their families.”
During the process, IPPS-A submits transaction identification numbers to the Defense Finance Accounting Service on updates to the pay system for Soldier promotions, separations, incentive pay and address changes.
The Army has touted IPPS-A as a 21st century tool that will provide a comprehensive online human resource solution that will be available to Soldiers 24 hours a day with the use of the IPPS-A mobile app.
In addition to payment processing, the system will also manage and optimize Soldier talents and skills with the availability of the 25-point Soldier talent profile, or STP, while providing a full audit capability. The STP contains data that details a Soldier’s experiences, skills, knowledge and levels of readiness.
IPPS-A Release 3 will bring all of these capabilities to the Army Reserve and Active Component, expanding upon the capabilities Release 2 provides the Army National Guard.
The Army Test and Evaluation Command will conduct a limited user test of IPPS-A Release 3 at different commands next month as it begins final preparations for the Sept. 20 launch date.
When Soldiers request a change to their personnel record under the current human resources system, they often must contact multiple parties including a personnel officer, known as an S-1, to make a change. Under IPPS-A, Soldiers can file changes virtually using one online system, which allows for up-to-date tracking on the progress of changes.
Lust said one of IPPS-A’s best features is that it provides transparency in how record changes are processed.
“If they need to make an update, the Soldier can submit an action request to IPPS-A instead of physically having to go to the S-1,” Lust said. “An electronic submission of action in IPPS-A remains visible to the Soldier the whole time, so no more calling multiple shops to find the action.”
Previously if a Soldier wanted to go on leave, multiple parties would be involved in processing the transaction. Under IPPS-A, the request will be processed directly within the system, bypassing the need for a personnel officer to physically take the leave request to the finance office for additional processing.
The Soldier will also be charged for their leave [absence] request within 72 hours of the end date. An additional feature of the mobile app allows Soldiers to track their promotion points needed to make the next pay grade.
“Having been an S-1 on multiple levels, I understand the frustration of Soldiers when they don't get the answer immediately,” Lust said. “If you're at one level, the action could be two or three levels higher and you have to call multiple people to find it. As you're processing any sort of action, you'll be able to see it every step of the process.”