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How The United States Army Is Leveraging AI: Interview With Kristin Saling, Chief Analytics Officer & Acting Dir., Army People A Posted on : Aug 28 - 2021

The modern warfighter needs to rely on various technologies and increasingly advanced systems to help provide advantages over capable adversaries and competitors. The US Department of Defense (DoD) understands this all too well and must therefore integrate Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning more effectively across their operations to maintain advantages.

To remain competitive, the US Army has created the Army Talent Management Task Force to address the current and future needs of the war fighter. In particular, the Data and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Team shapes the creation and implementation of a holistic Officer/NCO/Civilian Talent Management System. This system has transformed the Army's efforts to acquire, develop, employ, and retain human capital through a hyper-enabled data-rich environment and enables the Army to dominate across the spectrum of conflict as a part of the Joint Force. LTC Kristin Saling is an integral part of getting the Army AI ready and shared her insights with us for this article. She will also be presenting at an upcoming AI in Government event where she will discuss where the US Army currently stands on its data collection and AI efforts, some of the challenges they face, and a roadmap for where the DoD and Army is headed.

What are some innovative ways you’re leveraging data and AI to benefit the Army Talent Management Task Force?

LTC Kristin Saling: We are leveraging AI in a number of different ways. But one of the things we’re doing that most people don’t think about is leveraging AI in order to leverage AI – and by that I mean we’re using optical character recognition and natural language processing to read tons and tons of paper documents and process their contents into data we can use to fuel our algorithms. We’re also reading in and batching tons of occupational survey information to develop robust job competency models we can use to make recommendations in our marketplace.

On the other end, we’re leveraging machine learning models to predict attrition and performance for targeted retention incentives. We have partnered with the Institute for Defense Analysis to field the Retention Prediction Model – Army (RPM-A) which generates an individual prediction vector for retention for every single Active Army member. We’re developing the Performance Prediction Model – Army (PPM-A) as a companion model to use a number of different factors, from performance to skills crosswalked with market demand, to identify the individuals the Army most wants to keep. These models used in tandem and informed by a number of retention incentive randomized controlled trials will provide a powerful toolkit for Army leaders to provide the most likely to succeed incentive menus to the personnel likely to attrition that the Army most wants to keep. View More