DPS helps airmen’s PCS/TDY run smoothly

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HILL AIR FORCE BASE — During the months of May to August, between 700 and 900 people move into or out of Hill Air Force Base, but the process can be done quite smoothly. 

Timothy Hawley, traffic management supervisor at Hill AFB, said that today more than ever, the movement of personal property and household goods during a PCS/TDY is truly a team effort.

“The team consists of the customer, the traffic management office and the transportation service provider,” Hawley said. “We use a system called the Defense Personal Property System to manage the household goods.”

DPS is DOD’s online personal property management system used by TMOs, TSPs and customers, Hawley said. 

DPS manages both commercial carrier type shipments — where a carrier or agent will pack, pick up, store (in-transit) and deliver household goods to your next location — and incentive-based self-moves made via the personally procured move program. To learn more about the incentive-based self-move program, go to www.move.mil/dod/start_your_move/personally_procurred_move.cfm.

“The PCS move season normally begins in April and May, peaks around the middle of July and starts to lessen towards the end of August and early September,” Hawley said. “We are now in the height of the PCS moving season where we process on average between 250 to 325 shipments a month. During this period we process about 60 percent of our yearly moves.”

To get started using DPS visit http://www.move.mil/dod/before_you_begin/dps_how_to_guides.cfm and click on DPS How-To-Guide number 1 and follow instructions. Once registered use the DPS How-To-Guide number 2 to set up a DPS profile. If a customer has orders in hand they can proceed to the next step and determine if they can self-counsel or if they must be counseled by TMO. If a customer already has a DPS account, they can log in and update their profile and then create a new order record for additional shipments under a new set of orders.

To see if a customer can Self-Counsel, they must visit http://www.move.mil/dod/accessing_dps/accessing_dps.cfm and at the center of the web page, click on their service department badge icon (make sure the pop-up blocker is turned off). If any of the situations presented to them apply they unfortunately are not eligible to self-counsel in DPS and therefore must contact or visit their TMO for assistance. TMO normally counsels on a walk-in basis; however, if necessary they can schedule a counseling session for unusual situations. “During our busy season we need at least five weeks prior to a customer’s first desired pickup date to arrange shipments,” Hawley said. “This is due to regionalization of the booking process so the earlier the better.”

If after a customer checks their specific service requirements on WWW.MOVE.MIL and they find they are eligible to self-counsel, then they can follow the DPS How-To-Guides referenced earlier. 

“Remember, in order to self-counsel and create Personal Property shipments in DPS, you must first have valid movement orders or the system will not allow them to proceed past the profile creation stage,” Hawley said. “All shipments will not be booked with a carrier until a final visit is made to TMO to present orders and sign final documents. This is very important.”

Hawley said you can visit: http://www.move.mil/dod/before_you_begin/prepare_for_your_move.cfm for detailed information of the entire preparation/roles/responsibilities of the Personal Property shipment process.

There are also security issues associated with on base household good shipments, Hawley said. 

“Due to security challenges here at Hill Air Force Base, if customers require on base services from transportation service providers, it is important for them to understand they are responsible to sign their crew onto the base,” he said. “Hence the key is good communication and coordination between the TSP and the customer for success.”

There are two ways to accomplish clearance for crews, he said. The first is through the visitor control center website located at https://cs.eis.afmc.af.mil/sites/Hill/VCC/default.aspx and the second is to physically meet the crews at the agreed upon gate (normally the Roy gate) to sign them in. 

With regards to utilizing the VCC website, crew information can be entered up to seven days prior to the first work day. The required information includes: full name for each worker and driver license number with expiration date. It is only necessary to complete a request for the lead worker but customers will need to add the additional workers information in the remarks area. After the information is submitted into VCC, customers must monitor the website to check clearance status for each worker and report back the results to the TSP representative. The TSP will in-turn, finalize the crew that will arrive at your on base residence to conduct movement services. 

“This is very important as large unwelcomed delays can occur impacting a customer’s PCS plans if not accomplished correctly. The key again is great communication between the customer and the TSP,” Hawley said. “This process is normally started when the pre-move survey is conducted by a TSP representative prior to the date of service. Customers can call the Security Forces Visitor Center for help with the VCC process.”

Hawley said customers should visit www.move.mil for everything associated with the personal property move process. Orders must be issued and presented to TMO before an official counseling session can take place, and definitely before a shipment can be finalized and booked. 

“Always remember that during the busy summer PCS season the ‘early bird gets the worm,’ ” he said. “TMO is here to assist throughout the process in hopes of making customers’ moves less stressful. We have inspectors on the road visiting residences and warehouses to inspect and evaluate TSP provided services. However, if assistance is needed during a pack-out or move, never hesitate to call TMO for assistance.”

If you have questions or concerns, call 801-775-3828 or 801-775-2849 or email 75LRS.outboundtmo@us.af.mil. TMO is located in Bldg. 430, across from Burger King and next to the Commissary.