PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- The Navy Credentialing Opportunities On-Line (COOL) program won first place during the fifth annual 2011 Human Capital Management Defense (HMCD) Awards ceremony in Arlington, Va., Feb. 16.
The Navy swept through the HCMD awards with a total of three first-place wins, including the first place finish for Navy COOL.
Sharing the winner's podium for first place with Navy COOL in the "Best Workforce Development Program" category was the Navy's Fleet Readiness Center (FRC) East Wage Grade Development Programs Center of Excellence.
Also coming up with a first place win in the "Most Innovative Recruiting Program" category was Naval Sea Systems Command for its Wounded Warrior Recruiting Program.
"The Navy did exceptionally well," HCMD Event Production Executive Director Lisa Ringlen said. "I am very proud of all of our finalists and winners.
Approximately three million people work for the Department of Defense (DoD), making it the largest employer in the United States. As the nation's largest employer, managing people is an ongoing challenge and a top priority.
The organization, Human Capital Management for Defense (HCMD), has brought stakeholders from the Defense and Intelligence communities together to discuss, develop and recognize best practices for managing human resources.
As a result of its work, the HCMD developed an annual awards program five years ago to honor, recognize and promote the organizations from DoD and the federal government, which have developed and executed those best practices.
Director, Civilian Personnel Programs, U.S. Naval Facilities Engineering Command Headquarters Pamela L. Spearow and one of the HCMD awards judges, said she liked the Navy COOL program because of the direct benefits it offers to Sailors.
"Credentialing is a really big deal these days," Spearow said. "I really like this program because ... this credentialing process gives marketability to a military individual, especially when they get out of the military."
Navy COOL is a centralized, Web-based hub that consolidates information from numerous sources at the federal, state and local levels on certifications, licenses, apprenticeships and growth opportunities that correspond with each Navy rating, job and occupation.
Armed with that information, Navy COOL has provided funding for Navy enlisted personnel to obtain civilian licenses and certifications that are closely aligned with a Sailor's job or rating.
Since its launching at the Center for Information Dominance (CID) Corry Station in Pensacola, Fla., in 2006, Navy COOL has processed more than 43,000 credentials for Sailors and received more than 80 million hits to the Navy COOL Web site at https://www.cool.navy.mil.
"I feel this award is a validation that the Navy's program is focused on the Sailor, the workforce, and in general the health and happiness of the Sailors," Navy COOL program manager Keith Boring said. "It means that not only industry, but that DoD can see that the Navy does have the right mix of training for its folks, both personally and professionally."
This year's finalists came from offices and programs from across the federal government, representing the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Defense Information Systems Agency, Internal Revenue Service, Department of Energy, National Park Service and the United States Postal Service.
"For a program that's only been around in existence for three years, receiving this kind of recognition at this level is huge," Navy COOL Director Sam Kelley said. "The DoD understands the linkage between what our Navy military performs and its association with the civilian counterpart, and the ability to transition using Navy COOL and credentialing to help fill immediate gaps within the Department of Labor requirements."
Perhaps just as impressive, Boring said, is the high pass rate of 96 to 98 percent for voluntary licenses and certifications among Sailors, compared to the national average pass rate of 75 to 80 percent.
CID is the Navy's Learning Center that leads, manages, and delivers Navy and joint force training in information operations, information technology and cryptology.
With a staff of more than 1,050 military, civilian and contracted staff members, CID Corry Station oversees the development and administration of more than 168 courses at 16 learning sites throughout the United States and in Japan. CID Corry Station provides training for more than 19,000 members of the U.S. armed services and allied forces each year.
For more news from Center for Information Dominance, visit www.navy.mil/local/corry/.