Army set to launch eMILPO - finally

eMILPO site

An Army effort to consolidate 43 personnel databases into one Web-based electronic military personnel office will be launched Aug. 1. This comes after a seven-month delay because of data migration problems and the war in Iraq.

The $9.5 million system, called eMILPO, is designed to provide near real-time visibility on staff information throughout the Army through a Web-based application.

It was originally scheduled to go online in January but was delayed after an Army fielding team discovered errors from data transactions and other problems associated with migrating 43 super-server databases to the eMILPO test database, Col. Gina Farrisee, the Army's adjutant general, said earlier this year.

Army Personnel Command officials decided at that time to delay the launch until March. When the system was ready to go, it was delayed again because of Operation Iraqi Freedom, said Lt. Col. Stan Heath, an Army personnel command spokesman.

Once the system is activated, it will manage the personnel accounts for more than 480,000 soldiers and reservists serving on active duty, Heath said. The system's four main functions are personnel accounting, including daily strength totals for units; personnel services, including awards, education and training; promotion and reassignment.

A Web-based training course for system users is available via the Army Knowledge Online portal.

Before eMILPO is activated, there is a two-week "blackout" period from July 16 to July 31. During this time, no personnel transactions generated at Personal Command or in the field will be processed, Heath said. The Army did not incur any additional costs for the seven-month delay because EDS, prime contractor for eMILPO, and the program management office absorbed the extra time and effort, according to Army officials. The eMILPO system is an interim step toward the Defense Department's $500 million multiservice, integrated personnel and pay management system, called the Defense Integrated Military Human Resources System (DIMHRS). The Army is scheduled to be the first service to adopt the system and will do so during the fourth quarter of 2004.

Navy Capt. Valerie Carpenter, the system's joint program manager, said her office is planning to exercise a contract option by the end of August for one of the companies competing for the integration contract. Among the companies are Computer Sciences Corp., IBM Corp., Northrop Grumman Information Technology and Lockheed Martin Systems Integration.

The DIMHRS contract was scheduled to be awarded in June, but was still pending as of July 15. Carpenter said the "delay of eMILPO does not negatively affect the development or deployment" of the larger system.

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