Getting Your Administrative House in Order

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Helen Harris
  • 127th Force Support Squadron
How many times have we been warned, "Military Personnel Data System (MilPDS) is shutting down for upgrade"? This message has loomed over us for the last year. This month, it becomes a reality as the system shut down for approximately 20 to 23 days, beginning 4 March. What does this really mean for you?

Introduced in 2001, MILPDS is the system which contains all of the personnel data and actions taken over the course of every airman's career. It is also used to initiate pay actions, maintain Air Force personnel accountability and strength data as well as support interactions with other Air Force systems and processes which rely on personnel data. The Air Force Personnel Center (AFPC) is upgrading and transferring the Military Personnel Data System to the Defense Information Systems Agency's Defense Enterprise Computing Center.

Transactions related to reenlistments, extensions, separations, retirements, retraining, SGLIs and, bonuses will not be processed during the migration process. They will be held and backdated when the system is back online. Processing for personnel updates are expected to be complete 10 days after the migration.

Upon completion of the upgrade, members are encouraged to thoroughly check personnel information to include DEERS, TRICARE coverage, Post 9/11 GI Bill education benefits, life insurance coverage, and other benefits to ensure information is accurate. Discrepancies should be reported immediately. It is much easier to make corrections while you are active. Corrections made after retirement can be difficult.

Personnel records for all members have been automated into the Automated Records Management System since 2010. Members are able to actively monitor and update their personnel records. A common misconception is that when one record is updated the others are updated automatically. This is not true. It is highly recommended that you keep paper copies of ALL personnel source documents -- these are critical in the event your record is ever missing information. The Force Support Squadron no longer maintains paper copies of personnel records.

No one cares about your record more than you. Members should annually review personnel records for accuracy to ensure their administrative house is in order.