Human resources at sea

This article has photo gallery Published on FLTLT Nicole Strachan (author), LSIS Richard Cordell (photographer), ABIS Shane Cameron (photographer), ABIS Leo Baumgartner (photographer)

Topic(s): HMAS Canberra (L02), Exercise TALISMAN SABRE

Lieutenant Commander Melanie Ryan and Able Seaman Maritime Logistics - Personnel Rachel Gorbert in the ships office onboard HMAS Canberra. (photo: LSIS Richard Cordell)
Lieutenant Commander Melanie Ryan and Able Seaman Maritime Logistics - Personnel Rachel Gorbert in the ships office onboard HMAS Canberra.

A small Navy team recently took on the complex role of personnel coordination during the major military exercise TALISMAN SABRE 2019 (TS19).

Aboard HMAS Canberra, logistics officer Lieutenant Commander Melanie Ryan and Able Seaman Rachel Gorbert were part of Sea Combat Command (SCC).

This team gave important coordination and oversight of personnel movements through the area of operations, advising command on how those movements impacted the exercise.

Ensuring the right people are aboard to ensure a ship functions is an important role and essential to operations, especially the ability to fight and win at sea.

During TS19, SCC was responsible for a multinational task element of five ships during simulated sea battle, which added to the complexity.

For Lieutenant Commander Ryan, the responsibility of managing the soldiers and sailors went beyond the warfighting effort.

“Our families at home can have the confidence that we value our people, are dedicated and focussed on ensuring the right people in the right place, at the right time,” she said.

Having specialist human resource sailors like Able Seaman Gorbert on the team made a significant impact on the smooth running of personnel on operations. She worked closely with other personnel-tracking teams to form a coherent picture of capability.

Both are looking forward to Navy changing the way it delivers highly effective personnel and associated capabilities across the fleet.

The recently announced plans by the Chief of Navy to establish a Maritime Personnel Community is much anticipated. This innovation will allow the Navy’s logisticians to focus on their professional mastery, while the maritime personnel workforce focusses on the management of the Navy’s people.

The newly established capability is designed to enhanced support at unit, group and force levels, providing specialist human resources and personnel support at the waterfront level. This includes complex exercise coordination such as Sea Combat Command’s personnel management during TS19.

Imagery is available on the Defence Image Gallery: http://images.defence.gov.au/TS201907141.