JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas— The reality of Air Force Force Generation, or AFFORGEN, the deployment model for presenting Airmen and airpower in support of the joint force, is well on its way only two months into Initial Operational Capability. One of the keys to ensuring the readiness necessary to sustain the model has been the implementation of Ready Airman Training, initiated Oct. 1, 2022.
Ready Airman Training, designed to train Airmen undergoing the reset, prepare and ready phases of AFFORGEN, has been shaped through efforts of Air Education and Training Command experts during 2022.
“As the lead agency for force development, including recruiting, development, education and training, AETC subject matter experts played a critical role in designing and implementing the new system,” said James Mueller, AETC’s Special Missions Division chief.
Planning for the system began with a design sprint in March 2022, where more than 70 participants from all MAJCOMs, supporting Component Commands and subject matter experts met in San Antonio to refine requirements within 12 training areas and develop a training structure for increasing baseline readiness for Airmen.
The plan incorporates modern educational approaches designed to deliberately develop the force.
“Our approach to how we develop the force is changing, and the new modality is mission-centric, competency-based, and places the Airman square in the center,” said Mueller. “The goal is a system that establishes a common baseline, while being adaptable to each individual Airman’s experience level.”
Under the new model, Airmen receive training more evenly across the 18-month AFFORGEN cycle, versus about 30 hours of just-in-time training that was required in advance of an expeditionary deployment. The total estimated training hours required for each Airman will be further differentiated, based on whether an Airman is categorized as inexperienced, experienced, or staff during the reset, prepare and ready phases.
“The new model gives unit commanders flexibility to develop training outside of the identified training events that meet the objectives of each ready training area and tailors training to the unique operating environments,” Mueller said.
User-friendliness was a key focus while designing the digital interface underpinning the new system. Members of the AETC design team sought input from unit deployment managers while designing the myLearning interface to ensure the system was user-friendly to both managers and Airmen.
"The myLearning interface combines deployment trainings that were previously disparate, into a one-stop-shop," said Robert Remey, AETC training branch chief. "This unified system simplifies and streamlines the process for unit training and unit deployment managers when maintaining an Airman's training requirements. This interface allows commanders to ensure the force is prepared to meet the future demands of our nation."
In preparation for the rollout of the new Ready Airman Training System, Air Education and Training Command experts facilitated three online training events Oct. 3-5 to educate and answer questions on the new ready training areas.
More than 500 unit deployment managers and unit training managers from across the Air Force attended the sessions to learn how to navigate the myLearning digital architecture. The Ready Airman Training Council answers questions and provides support for commanders, unit deployment and training managers through AETC.A3XT.ReadyAirmenTraining@us.af.mil. Refinements to the system continue to be implemented based on this and other user feedback.
Specific training objectives for ready training areas are available at AEF Online and AFFORGEN Connect websites. Major command officials are responsible for tracking and reporting readiness annually through myLearning.