IMO, BSO courses receive major upgrade

| September 22, 2011 | 0 Comments
Capt. Brent Bednarik (standing), assistant operations officer, 30th Signal Battalion/NEC, 516th Sig. Brigade, 311th Sig. Command, discusses student critique comments on the IMO/BSO courses, recently. (Larry Thomas | DPTMS, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii)

Capt. Brent Bednarik (standing), assistant operations officer, 30th Signal Battalion/NEC, 516th Sig. Brigade, 311th Sig. Command, discusses student critique comments on the IMO/BSO courses, recently. (Larry Thomas | DPTMS, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii)

Edmund Takeya & Medeline Harkins
30th Signal Battalion, 516th Sig. Brigade, 311th Sig. Command

Changes improve IA at unit level, provide cost savings, material is more relevant

WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD — Recently, the regional training course for information management officers, or IMOs, and battalion/brigade signal officers, or BSOs, in the Army-Hawaii Region, underwent a major revision aimed at making the course more effective and relevant.

This course has been completely revamped to meet the needs of students, ensuring training is relevant and updated to reflect the changes in information technology, or IT, and theater/regional policy.

What was previously a five-day course has been condensed to a two-day course, with an optional third day.

The impetus for the change is the theater policy that directs that IMO/BSO duties be performed only by mission occupation specialty 25-series Soldiers and government service 2210-series Army civilians, calling upon personnel with institutional IT training and work experience.

The training course focuses on commonly performed IT tasks and theater/regional IT policies and procedures for performing these tasks, all to sharpen proficiency in core skills.

These skills include setting up or modifying user accounts or adding IT systems in domains, being proficient in generating work tickets and performing unit-level network security mitigations on user IT systems.

Security of the Pacific Land War Net, the theater portion of the worldwide Department of Defense data network, has increased significantly in recent months, as exemplified by recent high-level Information Assurance, or IA, compliance inspections. The course currently provides students with a heavy dose of IA awareness and procedures in this IT operational priority.

The intent of the course is to train the IMO/BSO to become the first line of security at the unit level.

Upon completion of the course, students will have a better understanding of the Army’s IA program, Network Enterprise Center services and organization, and basic IT troubleshooting skills. Students will become the IT subject matter experts at the unit level and provide support to their organizations’ missions, deployments and redeployment efforts.

Improvements to the course include a totally paperless environment, which will make enrollment in the course, access to course materials, taking the exam and filling out forms online easier. Improvements also help administrators/facilitators capture data in real time — like attendance, the start/finish of an exam, student evaluations and exam scores — and extract and consolidate data less than 30 minutes after the course has ended, enabling timely feedback.

Previously, the course was presented twice a month, for up to 40 students per class, to meet the training demand during peak deployment/redeployment cycles. This frequency and class size resulted in significant human resource cost as subject matter experts were taken away from regularly assigned duties to prepare for and conduct course instruction during the original five-day course.

Condensing the course has resulted in cost savings, with minimal effect on overall instructional quality, and it has also reduced organizational mission impact to supported units by more rapidly returning students to their unit.

 

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Category: News, Training

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