Discussion in 'The Quarterdeck' started by MightyCrash, Apr 20, 2006.

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  1. Okay, just thought this might be a good subject to talk about - what with the RAF having to completly go of line yesturday and not even the administrators allowed on it, is this a worry for the Writers? Is it taking away the "human touch" of the armed forces. I for one don't fancy being in Iraq and having to queue for a terminal to sort out my own admin. What about being at sea? "Do your own C30's Sir, and don't turn port whilst doing it or we lose signal!". Or is this just another PAS scare all over again. What do you think?
  2. I can see the connectivity problem being an issue. Everyone onboard trying to use it at the same time will clog up the pipe.

    On the other hand, I quite like the idea of being able to check and control my own account. I never really believe what the WTRs are saying to me, I always try to ensure I can see their pas screen when I'm asking them something. Also, changes will be near instant, no longer having to get stuff done by the 15th of the month for it to be in by the end of the month.

    As long as it is sensible in what it will allow you to do, and there is a level of monitoring and control for the UPO 'experts' it gets my vote. Although I'll probably change my mind when I've had a hundred phone calls asking me "Is SATCOM down because I can't access JPA"!!!!
  3. Wrong, wrong, wrong!

    The system is still not "live" and still requires cut off dates for main pay runs. See my posts on the ARRSE board - this system as rolled out the RAF has resulted in desk clerks being given total admin rights, admin guys being blocked from the system, not enough terminals, slow response times, no trained helpdesk staff and incorrect mapping to jobs/roles. For the pay run, everyone was booted off the system, and now you can only go on at certain times of the day depending on what you want to do.

    Drafty has just drafted the roll-out team guys back to parent units - and we haven't done the roll out yet!

    Perfect timing to coincide with the new CIS branch!
  4. Pompey Sailor, I know WE are not live but the RAF are - I'm in a tri-service job at the moment so having a good laugh at their attempt to make it work. It's not. Still in my branch I hope it falls on it's ar*e anyway! Perhaps we could get some harry black maskers and blue tak to fix this - I'll check banner now!
  5. I don't think even the RAF are classing themselves as "live" now - the outages, downtime and connectivity shambles are demolishing any user confidence that may have been in place. Once a system loses user confidence, it will struggle to make up that ground again. It's a complete shambles that, from what I have heard at close quarters, does not have the confidence of the RN hierarchy, but the pen-pushers who sign contracts have stiffed us once more. We are going to have to go down a route which everyone believes to be currently inferior to our current methods. This includes different services getting different entitlements at the moment, which is pretty unforgiveable as you will see in a purple environment.

    I am surprised the journos have not grabbed this one to be honest, it's turning into another MOD IT fubar....
  6. I have little knowledge really about the system so far other than it requires robust connectivity. By that I understand that to make any changes on your account you must have connectivity with the shoreside system/server, is this correct?
    I've discussed it with another potential administrator who has been to a brief and he was told it requires Internet connectivity as opposed to Intranet. If this was the case and you need an IGS password to use the system then surely that would mean you could access it from any internet connected computer.
  7. Not quite. Will work over DII, but the intention is to provide internet connectivity at some point - depending on system robustness and security. Part of being DII means that you get an IGS password anyway - whether it will sustain infinite users remains to be seen.

    I believe that they system will work on a cached system as well, so that when a boat, for instance, gets alongside, the crew will not have to form up in rank order to enter details, but like the JPA (Tenders variant) system, data can be stored for later transmission. An exception/correction report should be generated to the user account, so at some point before going offline, the user will have to make sure that all data has been accepted/added.

    Last I heard was that the RN rollout teams have been drafted back to units....
  8. That's what I have heard too. The fact remains that the amount of money they have poured into it they HAVE to make it work or suffer the embarrasment. The worst thing is, like PAS, us poor Writers will get the same training as everyone else - bugger all!
  9. Wouldn't like every member of a Type 42 Ships company having an IGS password, it would seriously clog up bandwidth, every N* terminal onboard would be trying to use the internet!!

    This makes sense, you can make your changes without the need for connectivity and when the systems connected it up/downloads the changes and gives you an acknowledgement

    Is this a good or bad sign? I was quite looking forward to JPA as it would have meant a lot more money on this years deployment if I'd be getting LSA instead of LSSB
  10. Stupid question, but how would this work on a submarine?
  11. Subs? Data entry onto a laptop, then connected once you get alongside, or burst tx on an opportunity basis.

    MightCrash? Not a recent Gibber by any chance?

    Communicator - it's a bad sign. It means that the rollout date has gone right again, they have cocked up with rollout team manpower. As for allowances coming in on time - don't forget that Pay2K came in around 12 months's all going a bit like the Portsmouth Millenium Tower. So late they had to rename it....
  12. I'm sure it'll be worth the wait! Better to delay and get a working (hopefully) system. At least I'll be back shoreside by then.

    They never said which Millenium they were building it for !!!!
  13. wave_dodger

    wave_dodger War Hero Book Reviewer

    MightCrash - do I suspect only the mighty is new?

    Lets get this straight - Writers will receive proper, formalised training that will be instructor led. They'll get that like PAS, as part of a PJT or just prior to JPA go-live as part of th RN rollout plan.

    PompeySailor - Do we get the same allowances as Crabs or Pongo's now? NO, when JPA is on line for all three services then we will, don't quite see your point. In a joint unit and mine is too, it just remains the same.

    As for JPA hoovering up all the bandwidth onboard - thats why it is web fronted application - very low on bandwidth utilisation and lets face it after the initial novelty factor has worn off how often will people be logging on to see their pay statements, check their personal details, and on ships how often will they be submitting travel claims? For those instances when SATCOM isn't available it can use Ship Alongside, or revert to an offline version for the Ships Office staff.

    It won't be perfect on day one, no system ever is, but it could be better than what we have which is falling apart and will cost far in excess of JPA to simply replace.

    The team who looked JPA from the RN persepective made the hierarchy well aware of the pitfalls and problems and second guessed most of the problems that are now emerging. The problem is Defence doesn't have the money to replace all three Services payroll and HR systems therefore a common system was the only sensible way ahead - its a hideously complex area, there wasn't a real alternative. When its matured it will be a decent system.
  14. Wave_dodger

    Fully agree that no system is perfect from day 1. However, rolling out a system with the number and level of problems that JPA had/has does not fill me with confidence.

    If the RN could second guess most of the prolems that are now emerging, why didn't the RAF ???
    What makes you think that all the identified problems will be fixed before they roll it out to the RN ?
    It may well be a decent system when it's matured but in the meantime we (may) have to live with a system that screws up our MONEY !

    I now work in IT & see what happens when you try & implement complex new systems on the cheap with inadequate specification, testing and training - CHAOS.

    You can have it soon, cheap or correct - choose any 2 only.
  15. wave_dodger

    wave_dodger War Hero Book Reviewer

    All three services have focal points who worked with the JPA programme team (which in itself was a mix of EDS, Oracle, AFPPA, Uniformed and MoD Civil Servants) - the focal points were the single services Personnel Directors (2SL, AG, AMP) representitives. They have been in existence for 4-5 years, and stood up as the project did in the Concept phase (Using the CADMID model). Quite a few of the people in each focal point team were either IS professionals, Logs professionals or a good mix, all had seen large bespoke military projects flounder and a large proportion had time in civilian IT projects too.

    There were no surprises - apart from the continual optimism of the JPA programme team - using a COTS product should have ensured that the successfull delivery of JPA was assured, except for a number of things like - we don't really want to have to adapt all of our business processes to adopt JPA, we work all over the world, in moving platforms, with austere communications and with rich communications, we provide an almost 'welfare' system and we have a huge amount of data already stored which we need to keep or have access to. It was also well known that for JPA to be trulely successfull the DII infrastructure programme needed to have delivered.

    The Senior Members in Defence who took the decision to proceed were well briefed about the potential problems, but as Senior Manager they took the wider view that the know deficiencies would be recoverable. As we learn from the RAF rollout, JPA will be modified, the JPAC business processes will be altered, all the time in an incremental fashion JPA will be improved. I never said all the problems will be fixed but the deal-breakers will be resolved (hopefully).

    As you will know in any project there are really only three variables that the project manager has to wrestle with. Time, cost and quality. MoD for a number of reasons had to have JPA in by a certain date - that limits the project manager, the cost was fixed by the Centre, urgo there is only one area that can be altered and by quality you really need to read functionality - all the real bells and whistles have been de-scoped. Thats life in all areas of life not just defence.

    The real thing to consider is that all of the people involved with JPA at every level all have one thing in common - THEY ALL GET PAID BY IT TOO! It is in everyone's interests to make it work.
  16. The MOD is also working through the implementation of HRMS, which is a pretty gucci system. It takes time to get up to speed, but now its working its made life a lot simpler - online claims are the future but I worry about whether the IT support is robust enough in the field.
  17. wave_dodger

    wave_dodger War Hero Book Reviewer

    Thats why its web based - once DII is up the wigglies are there's to sort out at the sharp end, if the applications have snags its all back at the UK. Decent principle, lets just see how it gets implemented....
  18. bout to get myself and my oppos trained up for JPA so I'll get back to you with the results on this one......
  19. right, a little bit wiser but not much, looks like a lot of work initially for us but then should be ok, don't know how it's going to be accessable in the field though........ 8O

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