Reservist site adds self-service

My2xCitizen enables Army reservists to customize and update information significant to their military careers

Army reservists have a new tool to manage information related to their military careers thanks to a new self-service portal at the Army Reserve Personnel Command Web site.

The new portal, My2xCitizen (twice the citizen), provides Army reservists with a snapshot of their career information and enables them to customize data that relates to managing their careers. This includes the ability to update such basic information as name, address or phone number.

Prior to the launch of the new portal Oct. 12, reservists could update personnel files via telephone calls, faxes, e-mail messages and written letters, said Col. Bruce Pittman, commander of the personnel command. My2xCitizen supports the command's commitment to develop improved services for reserve soldiers in the field and Army reservists worldwide, he said.

"The ultimate goal is basically self-service to our customers and timely updating of vital personnel information," Pittman said, adding that the command's "customers" include almost 1 million reservists, retirees and other veterans.

The new portal enables active Army and National Guard soldiers who have served in the Army Reserve to view retirement and promotion information. The new features also enable current reservists to volunteer for ongoing operations, including Enduring Freedom.

My2xCitizen features all of the functionality and links previously available at the Web site and adds personalized career features, including:

* Personal information, such as contact data and service data.

* Retention, readiness and retirement information.

* Electronic military personnel documents.

* Alerts that flag key expiration dates pertaining to the soldier's career.

* The ability to update contact information.

* Customizable windows and components for personalization.

To access the portal, reserve soldiers must obtain a valid Army Knowledge Online log-in and password. Soldiers can then access the portal from the 2xCitizen home page (www.2xCitizen.usar.army.mil), which has been operational for about a year.

Maj. Rudolph Burwell, chief of public affairs and Webmaster at the personnel command, said the personalized portal, which cost about $800,000, had been in the works for about six months. Security concerns took the most time to overcome, he said.

"We're working with Army Knowledge Online quite a bit because security is a big portion of this," Burwell said. "There were no major [technology] bumps, but bouncing off their servers to our database with all the [personnel] records took some time."

Future applications will include the ability to update marriage status, training information, and the ability for unit administrators to access records, Burwell said, adding that those features should be available within a year.

Maj. Joseph Whitlock, a student at the School of Advanced Military Studies at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., helped test the portal about a month before its official launch. He said that being able to update your own personnel file and make electronic and paper copies is helpful and easy to do.

Whitlock has already used the new portal to change his address and was also given an online alert that he was due for a five-year physical last month.

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