It's crunch time for impending inspections

Col. Karl McGregor

Col. Karl McGregor

MARCH AIR RESERVE BASE, CALIF. -- This is it--crunch time for the Unit Compliance Inspection, Logistics Compliance Assessment Program and Health Services Inspection. As you read this, we are one Unit Training Assembly weekend away from the most significant inspections a base can receive.

UCIs are conducted to assess areas mandated by law and mission areas identified by senior Air Force and Major Command leaders as critical or important.

LCAPs check our installation's compliance with maintenance, logistics and supply chain management policy and HSIs assess medical readiness, management effectiveness and quality of health care delivery, evaluating whether or not health care providers and nurses are performing successfully while supporting readiness.

The 452nd Air Mobility Wing will begin its Unit Compliance Inspection beginning Aug. 18.

During this month, more than 100 Air Force Reserve Command inspectors will evaluate all groups and units on their day-to-day compliance with executive orders, Department of Defense Directives, Air Force and Major Command instructions. They will check for compliance with Air Force and AMC instructions, local supplements and operating instructions as well as bylaw programs, such as the Voting Assistance and Sexual Harassment Education and prevention programs.

What should the 452 AMW do to prepare for the upcoming inspections?

First, we have to clearly define requirements through regulations and ask this simple question: does it comply? Being honest in the unit's self assessment is the key and commanders must be directly involved.

Second, we measure success through Management Internal Control Toolkit self inspection checklists. The 452nd Air Mobility Wing has a tool currently being utilized to prepare groups and squadrons for these inspections: the Self Inspection Program (SIP). Group and squadron representatives are currently knee-deep in this self inspection process. Everything contained within these SIP checklists will cover the areas looked at by the AFRC inspectors.

Air Force Specialty Code Functional Managers ensured this by forwarding their most current SIP checklists to the AFRC inspector team and posting them on MICT. These checklists have been validated and disseminated to group and unit level representatives. Unit IP program managers should educate Airmen on SIP and how to fill out the checklists.

We should look at self inspection checklist questions as coming from an inspector. Those who will be interviewed during the inspections need a level of understanding that allows them to explain why their program is in compliance and they should have documentation available to prove how it is compliant. The why and how should be  inserted into the MICT checklists now.

This level of detail is the best preparation for the UCI and will provide great continuity for the unit in the long run.

Third, we must analyze the procedures and processes through exercises and Staff Assistance Visits. We are currently running SAVs internally for several areas. Wing  experts and guest help from other bases are reviewing applicable areas, using the actual inspection checklists and providing everyone the opportunity to get a set of outside eyes on their programs.

Finally, we'll work hard on processes, making them free of errors, consistent and reliable.

It's important that we learn from previous write-ups, SAVs and exercise feedback, and then begin the process again by returning to the original question: does it comply?

Attitude is everything

The bottom line in any inspection is that attitude is everything. As a wing, we are already motivated. We overcome adversity every day and succeed where others would easily fail.

In these final weeks before the inspection, consider all the things that can be done right now. We can ask tough questions about ourselves and our programs. What would an inspector say if they came right now? What do I already know I need to fix but haven't? What can I do to make my program stronger? Who do I need to team up with in order to  resolve this problem?

The start of the UCI will be here in the blink of an eye and the time we have left will be marked with preparation and management. Through a positive attitude, team work, clear communication and direct involvement, March will show the AFRC inspectors the 452 AMW is the best air mobility wing in AFRC!