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BRAC Employee Career Assistance Office Assessment Survey June 18, 2010

Posted by S. in BRAC, Change Management, HR Plan, Tools, Transformation.
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IMCOM, FMWRC and AEC employees,

HQ IMCOM, FMWRC and AEC are transitioning to Fort Sam Houston, Texas!

The IMCOM G-1 BRAC Employee Career Assistance Office wants to ensure you receive the right transition information, training and support tools.

Completing this survey will assist us in identifying your needs and scheduling applicable events.

Thank you for participating in the Installation Community BRAC Employee Career Assistance needs assessment survey. If you have any questions regarding the completion of this survey, please contact the IMCOM BRAC Placement Assistance.

Purpose of Survey

This needs assessment survey is designed to determine training needs for IMCOM BRAC-impacted employees. The results of this survey will be used to schedule BRAC transition training for IMCOM employees.


Your responses will be used collectively for research purposes only and will be kept confidential.


Participation is voluntary but your participation will make a difference in ensuring the right training is available to all employees. Please click on the below link and complete the survey before 30 June. Your input matters as we will pull survey results every couple of days so we can start scheduling training needs based on early responses. Make your opinion count and complete the survey!

Take the Survey HERE.

Thoughts on moving IMCOM September 11, 2009

Posted by imcomtransformation in BRAC, Change Management, Relocation.
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The following exchange between an IMCOM employee and Executive Director John Nerger addresses some of the questions on many minds as IMCOM prepares to transform to its new structure. The text is altered slightly to preserve the writer’s privacy. If this strikes a chord, feel free to post your own comment to this post.

Dear Mr. Nerger,

I appreciate you and IMCOM Leadership sharing the information from the command climate survey [distributed to IMCOM employees by email] in April 2009. I came on board in June, so I didn’t have the opportunity to participate, however, based on your presentation in the IMCOM New Employee Orientation that I attended shortly after coming to IMCOM, I wanted to add my thoughts.

Like many of the survey respondents, I do not understand the rationale behind the move of IMCOM to San Antonio for several reasons:

#1 – IMCOM is abdicating its geographical proximity to the Pentagon decision-makers on both sides of the river. Telephones and VTC are nice innovations and great tools for enhancing cooperation and collaboration on the tactical and task levels of an organization, but I’m not sold on the idea that strategic planning and decision-making can take place using those mediums. Nothing beats “face-to-face” conversations whether they take place in the office, on a golf course, in the gym, or over lunch. I think it’s instructive that none of the other military services are “giving up” their access to those decision-makers.

#2 – I’m hearing numbers like, “only 300-400 present staff members have committed to moving to San Antonio with the Command, but the Command requires 1200-1500 people to be effective and meet the mission.” If those numbers are even close to being accurate, where will IMCOM find a workforce in San Antonio that has the knowledge, skills, and abilities to help the Command accomplish its mission? What will be the cost in lost productivity by IMCOM–a “young” command that is still working to earn the respect and cooperation of the Army’s other commands and the garrisons that we serve–especially with so many of our war fighters actively deployed in harm’s way or moving back-and-forth between combat and rehab back home? Or the erosion for the credibility that IMCOM has earned to date across the Army when its “talent pool” takes such a massive “hit”?

Just some of my thoughts. If you’ve made it this far in my message, I thank you for “listening.”

Nerger Response

[Greets the writer]

I appreciate your note, and sharing your perspective, as a newcomer, on the changes we are experiencing.

The simple answer on our movement to San Antonio is we’re required to do so IAW BRAC law. I agree with you on the value of proximity, though some might argue many of the Army’s commands (FORSCOM, TRADOC, etc) have functioned well outside of the DC area. VTCs and emails do have their limitations. I haven’t examined all the deliberative documents used by the BRAC Commission to arrive at its decision but I suspect the following were among their considerations: dispersion of DoD elements outside of the NCR post-September 11; movement out of leased space into available permanent facilities on Army installations; lower cost areas for employees. And, quite honestly, the only way the Army would ever get new HQs built for any of its commands is through BRAC. I’ll leave it to others to judge the wisdom of moving so many command HQs (AMC, FORSCOM, TRADOC, HRC, IMCOM, etc) at one time.

The disruption caused by a loss of personnel greatly concerns me. This is one of the reasons we authorized a group relocation incentive for those willing to move, something no other command has done. Historically, organizations that realign because of BRAC see retention of about 20% of their workforce. I’m cautiously optimistic, because nearly 50% of our personnel have declared their intention to move. The rate is even higher for F&MWRC – 71%. Nonetheless, we will see a loss of much talent and experience and have to do a considerable amount of hiring. Being the optimist that I am, I think the fundamental mission of IMCOM will continue to attract quality talent, wherever we may be. The biggest challenge we face as a command is not taking a step backwards from the progress we’ve made since forming a few years ago. This is the primary reason why we decided to lease space in San Antonio in advance of our facility completion date at Ft Sam Houston, in order to mitigate some of the risk by staging our move over 2 years. We’ll also have to depend greatly on those parts of the community which will remain stable, namely OACSIM & the garrisons.

Thanaks again for your note. If you’d like to discuss this further, feel free to call on me. Thanks for being part of our team.

John B. Nerger
Executive Director
U.S. Army Installation Management Command

To move or not to move July 14, 2009

Posted by imcomtransformation in BRAC, Change Management, Moving, Relocation.
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[Don’t miss this insightful article on BRAC decisions, taken from Soldiers Magazine]

THE 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Act, better known as BRAC, is many things to many people.

To Congress, the Department of Defense and Army leaders, BRAC is an important tool to save money and realign forces and capabilities for the future. To a lot of Soldiers, it’s just another move. But to many Army civilians who are accustomed to putting down roots and building 20-year careers at one installation, it can be both scary and devastating.

The decision to move or not move with a job is difficult and profoundly personal for the 22,294 Army civilians and countless Soldiers and family members affected by BRAC. It is a decision dependant on many factors such as school-age children, ailing parents, spouses’ jobs and the current housing market. [Full article]

CARE Office opens to help with change June 18, 2009

Posted by imcomtransformation in Change Management, Real Estate.
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IMCOM headquarters has established an office for transitioning employees to get personal advice and answers to questions that might not be addressed through the Transition web site or town hall meetings.

Called the CARE Office (Comprehensive Assistance for Realigning Employees), it is a collaboration between the IMCOM MSO, EEO, and the DA CPAC. The office is in Room 8034 on the Taylor Building 8th Floor, and you can stop in, or call or email for an appointment with a specialist best suited to address your specific issues. Signs are up in the elevator lobby and elsewhere on the 8th floor to point the way.

The mission of the CARE Office is to be a one-stop shop for assistance for those who are and those who are not relocating to Fort Sam Houston.

“We recognize that sometimes you don’t want to or can’t get answers to all of your questions via the internet or a town hall meeting,” said Chris Brandstrup, the MSO proponent for the CARE Office. “We want to be able to provide you brochures on San Antonio, refer you to job vacancies in the DC Metro area, discuss retirement options, or just help you talk through whatever is on your mind.”

The CARE Office is part of a service that IMCOM leadership has established to help employees manage the changes underway. As an option, employees with questions or issues can simply use the phone or email to get answers that might not be available elsewhere.

Chris Brandstrup is in MSO, and he can be reached at 703-602-2117. The email address will be activated Monday, 22 June.

Information for Early Movers April 16, 2009

Posted by imcomtransformation in Change Management, Relocation.
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Relocation Resources

The first wave of movers from IMCOM, FMWRC and AEC will be heading out for San Antonio in May and continuing through the year. Many others will be deciding on their future courses of action over the May and June time frame as options are spelled out and clarified.

In the interest of sharing information, we have added a Relocation category to this blog that will be dedicated largely to real estate and community issues. At first, our sources will, of necessity, be people in the real estate business and other relocation-oriented specialties, as well as resources we find on our own.

While the Army does not endorse any of these contributors, collectively they are a valuable resource and we appreciate their contributions.  Still, we hope the early movers will also get involved by chronicling their experiences and lessons learned in submissions to this blog or comments to other posts here. When we start teaching each other through this forum is when we know we’re successful.