Though we fluctuate in size U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla Northern Virginia is on average about 55 people. We support maritime safety, security, and stewardship on the upper Potomac River and surrounding territory in the Washington, DC area. We protect citizens on our local waterways, we protect the community from threats on our local waterways, and we protect the waterways themselves through a combination of on-water small boat operations, vessel inspections, and public education.
We also educate future leaders in service through "Auxiliary University Programs Unit Washington, DC." for which we are responsible, and have become a center for innovation throughout the Coast Guard Auxiliary, having led new projects in the areas of operations, training, citizen engagement, management and business processes, and information technology. We were awarded the Commandant's Innovation Award in 2011.
The major problem was coordinating personnel, qualifications, and activities/movements using a cobbled together system of spreadsheets, email, and phone calls. We focused on getting our people and data into one place that was mission-oriented (rather than data collection oriented) that gave our team leaders ability to manage activities but allowed our crew a degree of self service signing up for their own activities and keeping an eye on the affairs of their own unit through documents, discussions, and visibility into the schedule and our unit statistics. We face a lot of daily difficulties external to the unit, but D4H has allowed us to keep much of what matters in focus and in the same place.
D4H helped us solve problems by giving us a virtual point at which to congregate between operations and between all-hands meetings. Because we are an all-volunteer unit, we don't see each other at the station every day, so having this virtual way of exchanging information has allowed us to be much more efficient while also de-emphasizing the centrality of meetings (to which the crew has to take time away from home and fight through traffic to get to). We now focus much more on operations and training.
Activity scheduling and personnel/group/qualification management is where we see the most use of the system, but some of our mission support people have begun exploring the capabilities of the equipment module and document folders. We're working hard to be more virtual when we can so that in-person time is spent on boats and at the waterfront. We're also working hard to adopt the "D4H mentality" when it comes to developing leaders and innovating in other areas - everyone has a part and a stake in what happens here.
We save a ton of time because we can quickly orchestrate more complex activities or strings of activities over time, assign the right people at the right place at the right time, and then allow crew self service features to collect roster sign-ups. We aren't necessarily doing more than other units, but D4H allows us to carry out more complex evolutions with greater ease.
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Connect multiple teams to collate organization-wide data. Learn More
Flagship product with equipment, personnel, and incidents included. Learn More
Record and analyze standardized incident reports from across your organization through web-based and mobile interfaces. Learn More
Entire training and attendance administration with built-in responder profiles. Learn More
Full equipment management suite including repairs, inspections, and logs. Learn More