Petty Officer Maritime Logistics Personnel Stacey Brotherton has been awarded a Conspicuous Service Medal in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours for her meritorious achievement as the research and communication coordinator for the Navy Divisional System.
Petty Officer Brotherton applied her years of experience to design and implement new ways that Navy members could engage with the personnel management, administrative and human resources aspects of service life.
Her tireless work has directly improved access to current and relevant information so that all Navy members are better supported in the workplace, with a greater understanding of entitlements and available support services.
“I spent a lot of time with Warrant Officer Joanne Jordan looking at the existing resources and realised Navy that was moving rapidly away from paper-based records and resources,” Petty Officer Brotherton said.
“It was important that all Navy members be able to access the most authoritative and up to date information in a single location, and that it be digital.”
Petty Officer Brotherton and her small team replaced the Divisional Toolbox and the Divisional Officers’ Handbook with the highly successful ePort intranet site. Going one step further, they navigated the ambitious territory of mobile application development to extend the divisional resources.
“I didn’t have any funding or technical skills, but Leading Seaman Communications and Information Systems Peter Turner and I were determined to find a way to build the app.
“We discovered a practical way of preparing content with an online application management program that allows the Navy app to exist within a third-party shell application.
“It’s highly cost effective. There was no large-scale project or copious sums of money. The only investment was our time, a little ingenuity, and a minimal yearly hosting fee.”
The mobile application has been extremely well received and is a prime case of a Petty Officer and Leading Seaman having an innovative idea and bringing it to fruition.
“We’ve been well supported by our superiors and it’s gratifying to be part of a Navy that wants to hear voices and ideas regardless of rank,” she said.
As a shining example of how the emergent Australian Defence Force Total Workforce model can work effectively, Petty Officer Brotherton has transferred service categories and employed flexible work arrangements to successfully continue her career with the Navy while being present at home.
“As a mother of three young children and life is a constant juggling act. When I was a serving full time, my understanding of the reserves was limited and I didn’t believe that I would be able to contribute in a meaningful way.
“My career to date and this award proves this theory wrong. I’m proud to receive an honour at this level and look forward to re-joining full-time and returning to sea in the future,” Petty Officer Brotherton said.
“It is enough for me when my superiors take the time to stop and say thank you in person, so this award is the biggest thank you I could imagine. I will wear it proudly.”