PERSONNEL SERVICES BATTALION
This chapter describes the mission, functions, organization, and employment of the personnel services battalion (PSB) and its personnel detachments (PD). It describes PSB and PD communications external support, and deployment options. A section on the personnel service company is also included.The PSB mission is to operate the direct support dimension of the personnel information and casualty management systems and provide essential personnel services to commanders, soldiers, and Army civilians.
The PSB commander also serves as personnel officer. In that role, the commander synchronizes the critical personnel information exchange between and among units. The commander also coordinates activities as personnel officer with the supported command's G1 or S1. Additionally, the PSB commander normally assumes operational control over the collocated personnel units.
The PSB is responsible for critical tasks associated with the following systems: data base management of personnel accounting and strength reporting (Chapter 2), casualty operations management (Chapter 3), and personnel information management (Chapter 5). The PSB is also responsible for the following essential personnel services, (Chapter 8): identification documents, personnel evaluations, promotions and reductions, officer procurement, and soldier actions.
The PSB exercises command and control over personnel detachments and a modular postal company, which will replace the currently fielded DS postal company. The PSB modular structure consists of a headquarters element, with S1, 2, 3, and 4 sections, from two to six identical personnel detachments, and a postal company. Commanders use these building blocks to tailor their organizations to support specific missions in accordance with METT-T. Figure 20-1 shows the PSB organizational structure.
The PSB headquarters commands and controls from two to six assigned detachments and a postal company and exercises operational control over attached or collocated personnel units. It provides policy and direction for PSB operations, plans, organization, and training. It also coordinates consolidation of personnel functional reports from detachment commanders. Figure 20-2 shows the PSB headquarters organizational structure.
The PSB headquarters and staff sections manage internal support actions and provide operational support to assigned and attached/collocated personnel units. Operational support includes providing food service, unit-level maintenance, and essential classes of supply. This normally involves coordination with other combat service support (CSS) units.
The modular structure supports organizational tailoring. Personnel group commanders may reassign personnel detachments among PSBs to increase or decrease PSB support capacity as units shift on the battlefield. PSB commanders can tailor their organizations internally to meet potential contingencies. A PSB commander may assign a team from one personnel detachment to another to increase a detachment's support capacity.
Commanders must prepare to organize the PSB according to METT-T requirements. The following are some typical employment examples:
- Under ideal conditions, the PSB commander could collocate detachments and tailor their resources along functional lines while preserving organizational integrity for contingency operations purposes. In peacetime, with table of distribution and allowances (TDA) augmentation, the functions equate to the branches outlined in AR 600-8, Military Personnel Management.
- Ideal conditions will not always be found in peacetime, and commanders must configure their organizations to best accomplish the mission. For instance, the demands of geographical dispersion in peacetime stationing will require a number of personnel detachments to be physically separated from the battalion.
- In wartime, a number of different scenarios can be anticipated. Although perhaps remote, the mid-intensity NATO scenario remains a possibility. Within this scenario, collocated personnel detachments, functionally tailored, could be the norm.
- In a contingency operation, the PSB may deploy as a unit or incrementally by detachment or team to support the entire operation. Due to their austere staffing, PSBs require substantial transportation support and communications linkage during and after deployment. The PSB may deploy a single detachment in support of a brigade task force to handle specific functions within the area of operations and retain one or more detachments in garrison to sustain the deployed force. As the situation matures and the contingency force builds, additional detachments would deploy as required.
In peacetime, the PSB can operate three functional detachments, in accordance with AR 600-8, if the situation dictates. In addition, the PSB may have responsibility for the personnel reassignment branch, a TDA organization. Detachment responsibilities are as follows:
- The personnel information detachment is responsible for personnel information management and personnel evaluations.
- The personnel automation detachment is responsible for automated PASR management and personnel data base management.
- The personnel actions detachment is responsible for casualty operations management, identification documents, promotions and reductions, officer procurement, and other soldier actions. PSB commanders must plan for all contingencies. METT-T will dictate the need for organizational change.
The PSB structure provides for direct military personnel support to all units within a designated support area. It operates on a 24-hour basis using two shifts.
PSBs operate under personnel group command and control within a corps or TAACOM personnel support network. Personnel detachments have been designed to increase or decrease the support capability of a PSB in increments of up to 6,000 soldiers serviced. They may operate independently if METT-T requirements so dictate.
After initial deployment, the commander will functionally organize to support METT-T requirements. Whenever task-organized, the personnel detachment commanders have additional responsibilities as functional detachment chiefs.
A PSB provides DS personnel services for each division as well as support for other units within the division area. These PSBs play a major role in supporting the division's personnel readiness and replacement management systems. To support this role, the PSB collocates with the division rear CP. This arrangement facilitates personnel information exchange between personnel information and personnel readiness managers. PSBs supporting corps nondivisional and TAACOM units provide direct support to units located within their designated areas of operation. They manage personnel information for supported units. They also ensure that the information flows to and from the correct command personnel data base manager and nondivisional units. The PSBs operate throughout the area of operations, usually close to one or more corps major subordinate unit headquarters.
PSB placement in the time-phased force deployment list is critical. The Army Component commander must establish deliberate decision points as to when units should transition from CONUS-based personnel reporting and support. PSB elements must deploy as early as possible in order to effectively support forward deployed units. The teams may be task-organized to support assault echelons in early entry operations.
The PSB organizational design allows it to operate a long distance from its parent unit, the personnel group. However, it has little internal support capability. It depends on outside sources for transportation, communication, DS maintenance, health services, and religious, finance, and legal support.
The PSB location determines the support sources. PSBs supporting and located within divisions draw their support from the division. Those located within the corps or TAACOM area of operations draw their support from those organizations.
The PSB provides food service support to a collocated finance support battalion and replacement company.
The PSB normally draws defense support from a defense support cluster. It participates in cluster defense under the senior commander's direction.
The supported unit (corps, TAACOM, or division) must integrate the PSB into its mobile subscriber network to provide assured data transmission/reception capability on a real-time basis. A local or wide area network must link the PSB with the supported unit (corps, TAACOM, or division) personnel management center (PMC) for information transfer between data bases.
The PSB requires 100 percent of its TOE equipment and supplies to be transported in a single lift using its authorized vehicles to provide services in the corps/division areas. It must also have transportation available to move personnel and CTA equipment.
The following paragraphs describe the personnel detachment's mission, organization and functions, and employment on the battlefield. They also describe PD communications, external support, and deployment options.
The PD mission is to operate the direct support dimension of the personnel information and casualty management systems and to provide essential personnel services to commanders, soldiers, and civilians. The detachment is a modular structure designed to support a population of up to 6,000 soldiers and civilians.
The PD commander functions as commander and personnel officer. He may also assume operational control over collocated postal platoons and replacement detachments. The personnel officer synchronizes the critical personnel information exchange between and among units.
The PD manages the following personnel systems and performs the associated critical tasks.
The PD manages the following critical personnel systems:
- Personnel accounting and strength reporting (PASR) data base management.
- Personnel information management.
- Casualty operations management.
The PD also provides the following essential services to commanders, soldiers, and Army civilians:
- Soldier readiness processing (SRP).
- Identification documents.
- Personnel evaluations.
- Promotions and reductions.
- Officer procurement.
- Other soldier actions.
The personnel detachment has four elements: detachment headquarters, personnel information section, personnel systems section, and personnel services section. Each section has three teams. A team from each section can be combined to form a cohesive support team capable of providing support to up to 2000 soldiers and civilians. Figure 20-3 shows the PD organizational structure.
Detachment headquarters is responsible for command and control of assigned personnel. It provides policy for detachment operations and coordinates personnel function reports consolidation for commanders of the units it supports.
The personnel information section is responsible for personnel information management and personnel evaluations.
The personnel systems section is responsible for automated PASR data base management. The section prepares and backs up the electronic data base as a source of information (for example, personnel data base files).
The personnel services section is responsible for casualty operations, identification documents, officer procurement, promotions and reductions, and other soldier actions.
The PD may deploy as a unit or incrementally by team to support the commander's concept of the operation. PDs require substantial transportation support and assured communications linkage for real-time information flow both during and after deployment.
Detachments/teams may deploy separately from their parent unit. The detachment/teams will normally be attached to the primary supported unit for logistics support when detached from the parent organization. Commanders determine the best location for responsive personnel support.
Personnel group commanders may reassign PDs among PSBs to increase or decrease PSB support capacity as units shift on the battlefield. Also, PSB commanders may reassign the teams of a personnel detachment among personnel detachments to increase a detachment's support capacity.
In peacetime, the PSB may organize the teams of the PD into three functional detachments if the situation dictates. The detachments are the personnel information detachment, personnel automation detachment, and personnel actions detachment.
The PD can operate a long distance from its parent unit, the personnel services battalion. However, it has little organic support capability and therefore must draw transportation, communications, food service, DS maintenance, and religious, health service, finance, and legal support from the principal unit in the area supported. It must draw defensive support from defense clusters, participating under the senior commander's direction.
The PD location determines its support sources. Those that support divisions draw their support from the division. Those that support corps nondivisional and TAACOM units draw their support from the COSCOM and TAACOM, respectively.
The PD can deploy as a unit to support a brigade task force or comparable-size force or in teams to support contingency operations. Support team size and composition depend on the type of operation (i.e. war or operations other than war such as domestic support or peace operations), expected intensity level, supported population size, and communications and transportation availability in the area of operations. The supported unit PMC OIC and the PD commander tailor team composition to the expected situation, supported population, and number of personnel available.
When a PD deploys as a unit to support an entire area of operations for an extended period, the PD needs communications and transportation support after deployment. The PD must have access to a communications node for voice and data communication over mobile subscriber equipment (MSE).
The PD uses the corps, TAACOM, or division communications network to transmit critical real-time information within the theater. Digital transmission using MSE is the primary means of data transmission to the sustaining base and within the theater. Voice, teletype, facsimile and data disk by courier may be used as a backup with a corresponding degradation in information reliability. The PD does not own or control all components of this communications net. Close coordination among the PD, PSB, personnel group, and supporting signal unit is essential.
There is a requirement for the PD to have a wide area and/or local area network connection with the supported corps major subordinate unit or division command data base. This is essential to maintaining a current command database to support the command decision process regarding personnel readiness management.
The PSB and PD replace the personnel service company (PSC). The functional mission will be the same. However, PSCs are currently in the inventory. The following paragraphs describe the PSC organization, and functions and employment.
AR 600-8, Military Personnel Management, describes the PSC organizational structure. The PSC has a headquarters and three basic branches: personnel automation, personnel information, and personnel actions. This is shown at Figure 20-4.
In peacetime, the PSC also is usually responsible for the personnel reassignment branch, a TDA element.
The company headquarters provides command and control of the unit and operational support to include food service, unit-level maintenance, and essential classes of supply.
The personnel automation branch is responsible for personnel automated information management to include personnel data base management of PASR management (including civilians).
The personnel information branch is responsible for personnel information management and personnel evaluations.
The personnel actions branch is responsible for casualty operations management, identification documents, and officer procurement, promotions, and reductions.
The PSC structure provides for direct personnel support to all Army units assigned or attached for personnel support within a designated or assigned area. It operates on a 24-hour basis using two shifts.
All PSCs operate in a corps/TAACOM personnel support network. A personnel group provides command and control.
A PSC provides direct support for each division area. These PSCs play a major role in supporting the division's personnel readiness and replacement management systems. The PSC normally operates from the division rear CP area. This collocation with the division PMC facilitates information exchange between personnel information managers and personnel readiness managers. The PSC also ensures that the information flows to and from the correct command personnel data base manager.
PSCs supporting corps nondivisional units and theater EAC units provide support to all units assigned or attached to those units. They manage the personnel information for units within their areas of responsibility. These PSCs usually operate from locations close to a corps/TAACOM major subordinate unit headquarters throughout the theater of operations.
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