1 November 1998















1. PURPOSE: To provide policy and guidance to supervisors, managers and technicians for implementing Upward Mobility in the Arkansas National Guard Full-Time Technician Work Force. To provide an opportunity for the advancement of lower grade-level technicians (below GS-09 and WG equivalent) who are in positions or occupational series which do not allow them to realize their full work potential. It is a complete, planned program to prepare technicians to qualify for promotion or reassignment to a position with known promotion potential.

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2. APPLICABILITY: This Plan is applicable to all permanent technicians of the Arkansas Army and Air National Guard.

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    a. To provide selected technicians an opportunity to enter transition positions that will prepare them through on-the-job and formalized training to reach their full potential.

    b. To identify career positions that support the development (upward mobility) of participants.

    c. To expedite placement of participants into technical, administrative and craft/trade careers.

    d. To motivate technicians toward high achievement and create a climate conducive to high morale.

    e. To assure a broad base within the work force for selecting technicians to fill vacancies.

    f. To establish reporting systems, cost systems, and budgeting for Upward Mobility Program training and evaluation.

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    a. Upward Mobility - A systematic management effort that emphasizes through National Guard Bureau and State policy the development and implementation of specific career opportunities for military technicians who are in positions below GS-09 or WG equivalent, that do not enable them to realize their full work potential. Training and developmental efforts primarily aimed at improving current occupational performance are not considered upward mobility.

    b. WG Equivalent - Approximately same rate of pay as the GS.

    c. Target Position - A full performance level position specifically identified for an upward mobility participant to fill upon completion of required training.

    d. Transition Position - An entry level or bridge position specifically designed and established below the grade of the target position which enables a technician who satisfactorily completes the required training to become qualified for the target position.

    e. Dead-end Position - A position (below GS-09 or WG equivalent) that lacks career development opportunities or promotion potential.

    f. Individual Development Plan (IDP) - A plan that sets forth the participant's training and development assignments required to qualify for a specific target position. Appendix A is an example of an IDP.

    g. Self-Development - The education and training that technicians provide for themselves according to their career interests or that contribute to their general growth.

    h. Participant/Trainee - An onboard technician (below GS-09 or WG equivalent) who applies and is competitively selected for an upward mobility position.

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    a. To be eligible for participation in the Upward Mobility Program a military technician must be a permanent appointee and be in a dead-end position below GS-09 or WG equivalent.

    b. Before entering an excepted transition position, competitive technicians must satisfy the appropriate military membership requirements.

    c. Military grade requirements need not be met at the time a technician enters the position. The military grade requirements must be met upon entry into the target position.

    d. Compatibility may be waived to enter a transition position. A request for this waiver must be submitted to the HRO at the time of selection. All compatibility requirements must be met at the time the technician enters the target position.

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    a. Human Resources Office (HRO):

        (1) Designate a member of the HRO staff to serve as "Upward Mobility Program Coordinator."

        (2) Develop and update the Upward Mobility Plan.

        (3) Participate in the functional development of the program by helping managers and supervisors identify target, dead-end and     transition positions. Decisions derived from these actions will be closely coordinated with the NGB-HR, Western Personnel Center.

        (4) Publicize and announce upward mobility positions and training opportunities.

        (5) Evaluate and refer qualified applicants for selection IAW State Merit Placement Plan.

        (6) Participate with functional managers and/or supervisors and trainees, as appropriate, in preparing and implementing IDP's.

            (a) Education and training are geared to known and projected mission and organizational requirements and are provided in a     cost-effective manner through the state, DOD, OPM and Non-Government Facilities.

            (b) Education and training are provided on site during normal duty hours, for trainees who have been selected for upward mobility positions, when economical and feasible.

            (c) Supportive financial planning and budgeting actions are included in the budgeting process.

        (7) Assist and advise supervisors in taking appropriate action when a trainee fails to meet performance requirements of the program. Actions to correct less than acceptable performance will be implemented in the following sequence:

            (a) Reassignment to former position if the position is vacant.

            (b) Reassignment to another position with equivalent duties, responsibilities, and grade to the position that the individual+ occupied prior to entry into the upward mobility program.

            (c) Repromotion to former grade provided trainee had voluntarily taken a downgrade to enter the upward mobility program. The repromotion would be subject to merit placement procedures and would not result in the individual being placed in a salary step higher than the individual would have attained if he or she had not entered the program.

            (d) Removal from military technician status.

        (8) Adjust pay as necessary in accordance with applicable regulations. If otherwise qualified, technicians who take downgrades in order to participate in upward mobility are entitled to pay retention.

        (9) Formulate procedures to expedite the placement of military technicians who satisfactorily complete training and meet qualification requirements for designated target positions.

        (10) Submit requests to NGB-HR Western Center, through the AR HRO, for job qualification amendment or review when training is to be substituted for some portion of the qualification standards. Training can be credited at a rate of not more than one month of on-the-job experience credit for each two months of training completed.

        (11) When a position has been identified to be filled by the Upward Mobility Program, the labor organization will be provided an opportunity for input concerning the position selected and the target group of applicants. Suggestions or concerns expressed by the labor organizations will be considered before a final decision is made and the position is advertised.

    b. State Equal Employment Manager:

        (1) Monitor the implementation of the State Upward Mobility Plan in relation to overall equal employment opportunity objectives.

        (2) Participate with HRO in upward mobility program development promotion, review and analysis.

    c. Functional Managers and Supervisors:

        (1) Participate with the HRO in identifying target positions through an analysis of staffing needs based on occupations, missions, organizational structure, and work force requirements of the functional unit.

        (2) Analyze target occupations to develop task statements that represent the raw material for restructuring positions.

        (3) Identify the knowledge, skill, and ability requirements that must be met through training and job experience in order for participants to progressively qualify for specific target positions.

        (4) Participate with the HRO in identifying transition positions compatible with mission and organizational requirements.

        (5) Counsel and encourage eligible technicians to apply for program participation.

        (6) Select applicants for program participation IAW the State Merit Placement Plan.

        (7) Participate with trainees and HRO, as appropriate, in developing and implementing IDPs.

        (8) Keep participants informed of their performance and progress on a regular basis. Supervisors of upward mobility participants will conduct formal counseling at least once each quarter.

        (9) Inform the HRO of any participant who is not progressing satisfactorily, and request guidance on appropriate actions.

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7. PLANNING: Adequate initial planning is a major ingredient in the success of an effective Upward Mobility Program. The following are considerations in the selection of an upward mobility position:

    a. Review of job patterns that prevent lower level military technicians from progressing into positions that could better use their skills, training and abilities.

    b. Determination of occupational series and grade levels where military technicians are dead-ended.

    c. Consider future needs based on attrition, changing technologies, new equipment and personnel changes.

    d. Examination of current positions to see if any can be used as transition positions.

    e. Consideration of military grade requirements. These may include:

        (1) Age restrictions related to commissioning if the target position can only be filled by an officer or warrant officer.

        (2) Military classification prerequisites plus any specific physical requirements.

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    a. Preplanning phase:

        (1) Identify manpower needs, assess the present skills of the work force, establish program objectives, develop plans and strategies, and gain top level support.

        (2) Determine the extent of upward mobility problems and the target population for the program by analyzing or identifying occupational series and grade levels where technicians are dead-ended because limited opportunities for progression exist.

        (3) Review technician/military compatibility requirements for positions to identify helpful (various military training and development programs) as well as hindering upward mobility factors. By doing this, future upward mobility efforts can be more productive.

    b. Primary development phase:

        (1) Identify target positions by conducting organizational and job analysis. Insure that:

            (a) Staffing surveys include projections of needs based on attrition, changing technologies, new equipment, and personnel changes that create vacancies.

            (b) Current positions are examined to decide if they can be used as transition positions or if the basic job requirements can be restructured.

            (c) Careful consideration is given to the implications of military grade requirements before identifying a position as an upward mobility target position.

        (2) Write draft descriptions for new positions and forward them to the HRO classification activity for final action.

    c. Secondary development phase.

        (1) Establish merit placement procedures using the qualification standards for positions identified. Follow the principle that each element included in the qualification standard is to be evaluated based on the technician's potential to perform the target job.

        (2) Assessment of applicants should be based on a review of work history, self-development efforts to include education and training activities outside of jobs, performance and interview appraisals, records of awards, honors, and interviews. The objective is to assess the level of competence and potential for each job standard regardless of where or how the attributes were achieved. Also, when assessing applicants, carefully consider the military grade requirements of the target position. Military age restrictions related to commissioning should be taken into account if the target position can only be filled by an officer or warrant officer.

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    a. The Upward Mobility Program is intended to meet current and projected staffing needs by designing and managing positions to enable high potential military technicians to enter career fields that will permit them to develop commensurate with their potential. To accomplish this end, individual development plans (IDP) will be established for all the technicians selected for upward mobility positions. The IDP will insure that the technician receives all the formal education, classroom training or work experience required to fully qualify for the target position. A copy of the IDP developed for each technician will be forwarded to HRO for approval prior to the individual starting in the position. A copy will be maintained by the military technician's supervisor and a copy given the individual military technician. (A sample format for the IDP is shown in Appendix A).

    b. In developing IDPs, it must be insured that training is related to the performance of official duties in a position commensurate with the military technician's potential.

    c. All training programs called for in the EEO Act fall within the bounds of Chapter 41 of Title 5, United States Code.

    d. Restrictions to training are:

        (1) The prohibition on training for an academic degree in order to qualify for a position for which the degree is a basic requirement.

        (2) The prohibition on training a military technician in a non-government facility for the purpose of filling a position by promotion if there is another military technician of equal ability and suitability who is fully qualified and available, in the Arkansas National Guard.

    e. Length of training. The length of training at any grade level may take up to two years depending upon:

        (1) The time required to equip the military technician with the skills and specific knowledge necessary in the target position.

        (2) The military technician's ability to perform the duties of the position.

    f. To avoid frequent minor amendments to IDPs caused by variations in mission and organizational changes in concepts or methodology in subject fields, or trainee needs, it is permissible to:

        (1) Adjust training time as appropriate, in individual cases, to cover contingencies such as sick leave. annual leave, military leave, or participant's inability to grasp a portion of training.

        (2) Change the sequence of training to allow learning experience to be responsive to actual work situations.

        (3) Add or modify subject matter material depending on technological equipment changes, organization and participants needs, and evaluation of the training and development.

        (4) Delete or modify subject matter that duplicates education or training the participant may be receiving through self-development efforts. Note: All changes in IDPs will be coordinated with and approved by HRO-EDS or Staffing Specialist.

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    a. Evaluation:

        (1) Evaluation will be accomplished in accordance with TPM 430.

        (2) Upon assignment to an upward mobility trainee position, performance standards and critical elements will be established for the position.

        (3) The individual military technician's IDP should be designed to enable the individual to meet the performance standards and critical job elements of the position.

        (4) Participants will be required to evaluate their individual training program. This will be accomplished by utilization of the format shown in Appendix B. This evaluation will be submitted along with each performance appraisal until the target grade is reached.

    b. Counseling:

        (1) Formal counseling of participants by the supervisor will be performed at least once each quarter. Informal counseling will be performed on an as required basis.

        (2) Counseling sessions will include, as appropriate, a discussion of work performance. training progress, career opportunities, and any work related problems.

        (3) All counseling sessions will be recorded by the supervisor on Supervisor Brief (automated). This form is maintained by the individual’s supervisor.

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Smith, James R.




USPFO for Arkansas


Computer Operator, GS-0334-06, PDCN 70025000


Computer Operator, GS-0332-07, PDCN 70025000


GS-07 requires 3 months experience at the GS-06 level.

_________ requires _____ months experience at the ________ level.

_________ requires _____ months experience at the ________ level.

1 January 20XX
3 months
To provide systematic and planned means for the trainee to acquire the skills, knowledge and abilities required to operate the computer console, operate associated equipment in a variety of modes, prepare the computer system for complete runs, process applications, and perform various administrative duties.
PROGRESS REPORTS: Periodic progress reports will be submitted to HRO-EDS on a quarterly basis. These reports will indicate training accomplished toward attainment of the mandatory qualifications of the position.

FORMAL INSTRUCTION: The following courses will be completed on the dates indicated:
-Introduction to Computer Operations (OPM), January 20XX (5 days)
-Operating Computer Peripheral Equipment (OPM), February 20XX (5 days)
-Systems Workshop for Computer Specialists (OPM), April 20XX (10 days)
-Workshop in COBOL Programming (OPM), June 20XX (5 days)

ON THE JOB TRAINING: After completion, the individual will be given opportunities to apply skills and knowledge acquired to the position. During on the job training, assignments will be performed under the supervision and guidance of a higher graded computer operator. Detailed guidance and instructions normally will be provided before the start of each new work assignment. Supervisory controls will be reduced as proficiency is gained in each task. Assignments will be performed in the areas of input and output media loading and unloading, labeling peripheral equipment, control and console operation (48 weeks)
Supervisor's signature: __________________________________________ Date: _____________

Technician's signature: __________________________________________ Date: _____________

HRO Coordinator (EDS): _________________________________________ Date: _____________

Appendix A A-1

NAME:  Smith, James R.
TARGET POSITION: Computer Operator, GS-0332-07, PDCN 70025000

RQD FOR QUAL 6 months 12 months


Knowledge of ________________________ _____ _________ _________

Knowledge of ________________________ _____ _________ _________

Knowledge of ________________________ _____ _________ _________

Knowledge of ________________________ _____ _________ _________

Completion of ________________________ _____ _________ _________









Appendix A A-2 IDP (Reverse side)

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TRAINEE_______________________________ POSITION____________________________

SERIES AND GRADE_____________________ ORGANIZATION_______________________

REPORTING PERIOD FROM_______________________ TO__________________________


1. List assignment(s) or project(s) given during the training period.


2. Do you feel the training program is accomplishing its objectives as they were stated to you?


3. Do you feel your assignments are increasing your technical knowledge?


4. In what areas do you feel you need further training?


5. What can we do to improve this training plan?








__________________________________________________ _____________________


Appendix B B-1


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