excluding the amounts spent on field and fleet training, was more than $5 billion. Also in FY 1996, Navy Department spending on all human resources research was about $86 million from a military work force account of more than $23 billion. This area might be examined further, with the aim of developing an overall investment plan; the return on a research investment of this type could be substantial.
Develop a more integrated system for managing people in response to advancing technologies, in order to increase efficiency and improve readiness.
Managing human resources to produce people able to do the variety of Navy jobs entails many separate activities, among them recruiting, testing and classifying, training, and assigning personnel to fleet and other jobs, as well as managing their careers, ensuring an adequate environment for them and their families, and retaining a high percentage of them in the Navy.
Technology increasingly requires that these activities be synergistic to succeed, but organizational or cultural behavior can impede this synergy.
Recruiting more highly capable individuals is efficient only to the extent that classifying, training, and assigning activities exploit their capabilities.
Technological advances allowing more effective self-paced instruction are useful only if the process for assigning people can provide jobs on varying schedules and reward individuals for early completion.
Investments in CD-ROM or embedded training possibilities are worthwhile only if the other facets of human resource management are positioned to take advantage of them.
Technology advances over the next three decades will create opportunities to manage people more efficiently by taking better advantage of their skills, experience, and talents. For example, advances in information processing and communication technology will contribute in the following ways:
Provide more specific, more useful, and more timely information, enabling people to be tested, classified, and assigned with greater accuracy;
Create greater opportunities for distance learning, use of more effective simulators, more effective multimedia training, embedded training, and other approaches that allow tailoring of training to individual circumstances;
Allow better measures of productivity to be created and make people more productive;
Make more information available to both the Navy and the sailor for career management and provide sufficient communication capacity to allow managing careers on a more interactive basis; and
Enable sailors to deploy and, except when in combat, to stay in close touch with their families and other loved ones.