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Measuring and Reporting Leadership and Core Competency Domains

This interim report summarizes the results of an independent assessment of Department of Defense (DoD) personnel systems and databases, focused on the identification and differentiation of what personnel data exist, where, and at what organizational level, as well as what is done with those data. This research focused on what personnel data are reported, via what mechanisms, both at the military Service-level and enterprise-wide, across DoD. Three specific personnel competencies—Language, Regional Expertise, and Culture (LREC) capabilities—framed and bounded this research effort: we focused on the extent to which existing personnel data reflect training, education, biographic/demographic, or professional experiences relevant to those competencies.

The Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA) conducted this assessment at the request of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness (USD(P&R)), Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Readiness, Defense Language and National Security Education Office.

IDA derived these competencies from existing DoD guidance, specifically the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Instruction (CJCSI) 3126.01A, “Language, Regional Expertise, and Culture (LREC) Capability Identification, Planning, and Sourcing.” This issuance provides “policy and procedural guidance for the identification, planning, and sourcing of Language, Regional Expertise, and Culture (LREC) capabilities,” which it identifies as “enduring warfighter competencies critical to global mission readiness and integral to joint operations.” This CJCSI identifies and describes three LREC competencies: core culture, regional/technical, and leadership/influence.

Examining the numerous military personnel information management systems across DoD, IDA found evidence that the personnel data captured by the Services are much more extensive and robust than the data made available to the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC). DMDC data, when associated with a Service person’s pay, are authoritative and comprehensive. Beyond that, the extent to which data at the enterprise level are authoritative and comprehensive is questionable. Evidence suggests that many data files are incomplete and unworkable.

The incompleteness of these data files hinders the ability of DoD to have an enterprise-wide view of Total Force Regional Expertise, and Culture (REC) competencies. In this document, IDA has made suggestions regarding additional data that could augment the existing data feeds. iii

Currently, DoD has no enterprise-wide REC readiness index. Using the current DMDC data elements that have been identified as suitable for competency mapping, IDA proposes to develop a REC Readiness Index (REC-RI) proof-of-concept application, hosted by the Person-Event Data Environment that profiles competency domain proficiency levels for the Total Force.

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