A Community Overview …The Navy Reserve Supply Corps

 Since 9/11, Navy Supply Officers have earned solid reputations based on their ability to accomplish missions with professionalism and the highest levels of accountability.  It is not uncommon to hear of stories where Commanding Generals eagerly ask, “Where is my Navy Supply Officer?” 

Figure 1… RC Core Competencies Billet Distribution

 Next to the Surface Warfare Community, Navy Supply Corps Officers are the second leading operational group, and this means Supply officers are found all over the globe.  They are comprised of both Active Component (AC) and Reserve Component (RC) officers who are distinctly different but share several core competencies. 

 These core competencies include Operational/Expeditionary Logistics, Supply Chain Management and Acquisitions/Contracting.  Figure 1 represents the distribution of Supply Corps RC billets across these competencies.  Examples where the Supply Corps RC work …

 Operational/Expeditionary Logistics (OPLOG/EXLOG)

Figure 2…Supply Corps Reserve Component Billets to Bodies

 These are principally associated with Supply units that fall under the Navy Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC) umbrella, including Navy Expeditionary Logistics Support Group (NAVELSG) and Navy Cargo Handling Battalions (NCHBs), Coastal Riverine Group (CRG), Navy Mobile Construction Battalions (Seabees), Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), Expeditionary Combat Readiness Center (ECRC), Fuels.  In addition, there exist units that fall under Special Warfare Command (SPECWARCOM), Logistics Task Force-Pacific (LTFPAC), and Commander, Naval Logistics Forces Korea (CNLFK).

 Supply Chain Management (SCM)

 This includes units such as Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Fleet Logistics Centers (FLCs), Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), and Naval Aviation Forces (NAVAIRFOR).

 Acquisition/Contracting (ACQ/CON)

 This includes units such as Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisition) (ASN RDA), Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA), Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Fleet Logistics Centers (FLCs), Defense Logistics Agency and contingency contracting units.

 The Supply Corps RC community is a connected, highly educated and diverse group of officers who serve around the world.  They are logistics professionals serving in contracting, financial management, fuels, logistics planning, supply chain management, and expeditionary logistics roles.

 Currently retention, as it was during the height of the Global War on Terrorism, is consistently high.  New accessions continue to successfully enter the Corps each year, and 118 Ens. and Lt. j.g. officers are currently in the Direct Commission Officer (DCO) training pipeline (designator 3165). 

 Typically older than their active component counterpart by approximately 10 years, these 118 junior officers represent the best and brightest, whether direct from our enlisted ranks or accessed from corporate America.  Upon completion of the Navy Supply Corps School Basic Qualification Course – Navy Reserve (BQC NR), DCOs are immediately eligible for deployment and join the fight in support of global Navy and Joint Forces.  As such, reservists are mobilized to all corners of the globe, including Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Pakistan, Bahrain, the Horn of Africa, Europe and Asia, as well as various Inside the Continental United States (INCONUS) locations.  To date, 67 percent of all Supply Corps RC officers have been mobilized.   For Reserve Supply Corps Captains and Commanders, this mobilization percentage is 95 percent, with many of these officers having completed multiple deployments in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.

 Many things in life are cyclical, and the RC is entering a period in which careful analysis and action is required by senior leaders to ensure junior officers can look forward to a career that affords them a diverse selection of paid billets as well as opportunities for advancement.  As of October 2013, there are 837 Supply Corps RC (3105) billets.  Figure 2 compares Supply Corps RC billets to actual population, and represents ranks associated with billets verses the number of active Supply Corps Selected Reserves (SELRES) officers.  The surplus of Lieutenants is filling in the gap from the shortfall of Lt. Cmdr. ranks.

Figure 3… 2013 Length of Service Comparison

  The Length of Service (LOS) Chart, Figure 3, compares active SELRES officers by rank with the Officer Programmed Authorization (OPA) (billets authorized) across 30 year groups (YGs).  Figure 4 represents the LOS advanced 10 years with anticipated DCO accessions and Navy Veteran (NAVET) affiliations.  As the current inventory of the Ens., Lt. j.g. and Lt. ranks move to the right, in conjunction with anticipated promotions, the Lt. Cmdr. inventory is expected to align with Lt. Cmdr. OPA with the Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 promotion phase.

 About 68 percent of all 3105s are DCOs; the remainder is made up of prior Active Duty (AC) Supply Corps officers who affiliated with the reserves, referred to as Navy Veterans (NAVETS), and officers who re-designated from other communities.

Figure 4…2023 Length of Service Comparison

 The effects of previous aggressive accessions efforts in the DCO program and the recent reduction in 3105 billets will create a challenge as junior officers begin to compete for billets at the end of their current tours.  Officers having to be Cross Assigned In (CAI) / Cross Assigned Out (CAO) of their gaining commands is the normal.  Senior leadership in each region, including Reserve Component Commands (RCC), Reserve Forces Command (RESFOR), Office of Supply Corps Personnel (SUP OP) and Commanding Officers will need to place an emphasis on professional mentorship and sponsorship of our junior officers to help them successfully navigate these challenges.

 Supply Corps RC officers serve across 20 major claimants or enterprises (Figure 5).  Commander, Fleet Forces Command and Commander Pacific Fleet possess nearly half of the billets, while Commander, Naval Supply Systems Command owns about 16 percent of the billets.  The claimant Commander, NAVRESFORCOM now owns 81 new Lt. j.g. Supply Corps RC student billets, which were created to help stabilize the newly commissioned DCOs integration into the Supply Corps RC.  

Figure 5…RC Supply Corps Billets by Claimant/Enterprise

  The Reserve Officer Community Managers endeavor to meet the flow points established by U.S. Code Title 10 opportunity rates for promotion of 80 percent (Lt. Cmdr.), 70 percent (Cmdr.) and 50% (Capt.) plus or minus 10%.  Table 1 provides historical promotion data for Supply Corps RC from FYs 12-14, and the upcoming promotion cycle for FY15. 

Table 1…Supply Corps RC promotion rates and promotions numbers

 As Rear Adm. Belton has made evident, our community is strong, and is comprised of highly motivated and dedicated officers across all ranks and competencies.  The following articles exemplify how Reservists are able and ready to bring value to the fight.  We will continue to meet the challenges and demands of service, now and in the future. 

 Be Ready!  Keep Charging!

By Cmdr. Roger Musselman, SC, USN

Supply Corps SELRES Career Counselor and Program Manager

Navy Personnel Command