In the December 2014 issue of Proceedings Chief of Naval Personnel Vice Admiral Bill Moran wrote, “It costs a lot to train people from the ground up,” meaning that maintaining a sailor’s connection to the Navy makes fiscal sense, and asserted that off- and on-ramps between military and civilian experience can provide insights that will add value to the Navy upon a return to service. While overhaul is almost certainly needed in our decades-old personnel-management system, I would argue that naval aviation would produce more cost-efficient benefits by adopting an opposing policy—keeping people in specialized roles longer. Although a human-resources or information-technology officer can gain invaluable experience in the civilian sector, a better choice for officers with specific perishable skills would be the option of building individualized career paths, allowing those individuals to attain their goals while the Navy maximizes its investment in its people.
Nobody Asked Me, But . . . - Technical Expertise Requires Its Own Career Path
By Commander J. W. David Kurtz, U.S. Navy