An analysis of closed-loop detailing in the naval helicopter community
Crawford, Earl A.
Seagren, Chad W.
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The growing need for special operations forces (SOF) aviation assets creates a requirement for specially trained rotary-wing pilots. The purpose of this research is to determine the effects of retaining specifically qualified helicopter pilots within a tailored career track. The Navy's helicopter sea combat (HSC) community possesses two squadrons that are dedicated to SOF and require extensive training pipelines. A large investment promotes utilizing these pilots for more tours than is typical of the preferred career path for naval aviators. This study examines the costs and benefits of retaining pilots in specialized squadrons for subsequent tours. Analyses are conducted of the current manpower and personnel distribution processes, and the development of funded requirements. Training cost estimates are reviewed, and historical helicopter pilot data are used to develop a steady-state Markov model capable of developing career progression data. Closed-loop detailing does not offer the absolute solution for the HSC community in managing its manpower requirements and personnel distribution. However, placing an improved emphasis on tactical qualifications and mission performance will increase the community's mission capability while meeting career milestone leadership requirements.
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