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WASHINGTON – In May 2023, Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro and then Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Michael Gilday released a memo titled Setting a New Course for Navy Quality of Service to directly address the identified areas necessary to improve Sailor Quality of Service (QoS).
As part of the memo, Adm. Lisa Franchetti, then Vice CNO, was designated to oversee a Cross-functional Team (CFT) to establish standards, measures, and evaluation for QoS, beginning at HII-Newport News Shipbuilding, then scaling the learning to other parts of the Navy.
As QoS CFT lead, Franchetti convened a team of leadership from Fleet Forces Command, Chief of Naval Personnel; Bureau of Navy Medicine; Naval Sea Systems Command; Navy Installations Command; Research, Development and Acquisition; Naval Air Forces Atlantic; Command triads from USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) and USS Toledo (SSN 769); with several other supporting commands to address QoS.
“Without question, Sailors are our strategic advantage and our most precious resource. Fully understanding the problems we need to solve and then prioritizing the effort to improve both quality of life and work is the nexus for this effort,” said Franchetti. “As Chief of Naval Operations, I will ensure that the Navy and all stakeholders continue to apply the necessary attention – not just through words, but also through identifiable actions - to every fleet concentration area, to ensure our Sailors have what they need to excel every day as members of our Navy Team.”
Upon her nomination to CNO, Franchetti designated Rear Adm. Scotty Gray as Quality of Service Cross-Functional Team Lead. The team’s focus is achievable wins for today and sustainable policy and processes that will have lasting impacts to improve Sailor’s lives.
“Quality of Service is important work and it takes an all of Navy effort. I can assure you that the important, necessary work is happening. Navy leadership, from the Pentagon to the waterfront are focused on getting this right,” said Admiral Gray. “Every Sailor deserves to be a part of a command that fosters climates built on trust, respect, and inclusion, and that meets their health and well-being needs inside and outside of the workplace.
The CFTs efforts focused on seven key areas all impacting Sailors in the Huntington Ingalls Industries–Newport News Shipyard: Navy culture, access to medical care and resources, opportunities for Sailors to go to sea, access to healthy food, improved living and working conditions in the shipyard, and increased connectivity and support for Sailors unable to perform normally assigned duties.
To date, the CFT, with leadership on the waterfront and in partnership with HII-NNS and the city of Newport News has:
· Ensured Sailors have access to off-ship, off-shipyard housing
· Updated housing and recreational facilities in Huntington Hall
· Guaranteed Sailors have access to healthy food options within 20 minutes of where they live and work, with 30 food options currently at HII-NNS specifically
· Reduced average wait times for routine medical appointments at HII-NNS
· Added additional primary care and women’s care at HII-NNS
· Provided free, high speed wi-fi for Sailors while on the floating accommodation facility (FAF)
· Consolidated parking and improved Sailor transportation to the shipyard
· Piloted an online CO Suggestion Box to increase communication with the dispersed shipyard workforce
“I am incredibly proud of the work our Navy has done so far to improve the Quality of Service of our Sailors, but there is still much more work to be done,” stated Gray. “This is an immense undertaking, but we’re embracing the red – understanding the root cause of our problems, aligning our standards and goals, and fixing or removing barriers along the way.
Leadership continue to lean on Sailors’ feedback for continued improvement. Sailors are encouraged to use all means available to raise QoS issues so leadership can address and elevate solutions that enhance their QoS.
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