Consolidated Unit Inspection set for December 2012

  • Published
  • By Col. Robert Stanley
  • 341st Missile Wing vice commander
By now, you have probably heard that the Air Force Global Strike Command Inspector General will conduct a Consolidated Unit Inspection of our wing in early December.

This will be our first-ever CUI simply because this is a new type of inspection. In an effort to reduce the types and frequency of various inspections, the HAF Inspector General developed the CUI concept. The CUI integrates into one, 5-day period several previously independent inspections, for example: the Compliance Inspection, the Operational Readiness Inspection, the Health Services Inspection, the Logistics Compliance Assessment Program, and the 20 AF Combat Capability Assessment (which is unique to the three missile wings). So instead of having four to five inspections during a 2-year period, we will normally have just two: the CUI and a Nuclear Surety Inspection (which is a very unique and specialized inspection for nuclear mission units).

Normally the phrase "inspection" conjures up images of late-night checklist reviews, early morning status briefings and 11th-hour scrambling to get ready for the inspection. But our wing philosophy is that if we do our mission right each day of the year, then an inspection is nothing to fear. An inspection then, is just a validation that we're doing the right things...that we're always "mission ready."

Having said that, we do have many existing capabilities that help us validate our mission readiness. For example, we have base exercises, self inspection programs, standardization/evaluation functions and staff assistance visits. All serve the same function: to ensure we're doing what we're supposed to be doing.

We have a robust Exercise Evaluation Team that is responsible for developing local exercises. Exercises might be painful and inconvenient at times, but they are a critically important tool to help prepare for any scenario. If we are successful during these exercises, then we will be better prepared for real-world events and inspections.

Another way we know we are doing things right is our self inspection program. Each organization has a number of checklists that they are required to run. These checklists are designed to ensure success--but only if we use the most current checklists and only if all personnel accurately, thoroughly and honestly answer the questions on the checklists. We must be willing to critically assess ourselves to expose potential problems. The bottom line is if you're not really looking to find a problem, then you'll be giving yourself and your unit a false sense of security.

In the next few months, we will provide monthly articles in the Front Range Guardian to help inform personnel of what to expect from the upcoming CUI. We expect that the wing's professionalism, dedication and diligence will enable us to provide a command-wide benchmark for ICBM mission readiness and capability.

The bottom line is this: we are Wing One, always ready--and we will prove it to the AFGSC/IG when they inspect us in December.