API - fostering innovative ideas

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Anania Tekurio
  • 28th Bomb Wing Public Affairs
The Air Force has always encouraged Airmen to share innovative ideas with their leaders as a way of fostering a work environment that inspires on adapting and overcoming challenges.

One way top leaders in the Air Force are bolstering these efforts is through the Airmen Powered by Innovation program. Launched May 1 with the Every Dollar Counts Campaign, API consolidates four of the Air Force's previous idea generating programs.

"The previous programs were beginning to get stale over time and effective ideas were not being submitted," said Staff Sgt. Jesse Boren, 28th Force Support Squadron manpower analyst. "Also, the tight fiscal environment that we are operating in motivated the consolidation."

The four previous programs, include the Innovative Development through Employee Awareness program, Productivity Enhancing Capital Investment program, Best Practices and the Air Force Smart Operations for the Twenty-First Century program.

Similar to the IDEA program, under the API program ideas may be submitted by individuals, units and organizations at all levels to include active duty, civilians, contractors and members of the Air Force Reserve in Title 10 status.

Staff Sgt. Daniel Reitz, 28th FSS manpower analyst, explained that the leaders who are evaluating ideas are focusing on a number of different factors.

"Our leaders are not only looking at the current method utilized for completing a task, but the proposed method, the expected benefits and the cost of implementing the proposed method," Reitz said. "Also, ideas affecting morale for personnel will now be considered."

Reitz added that one of the major differences between the IDEA and API program is that the API program will be tasking organization level individuals to evaluate and approve or disapprove ideas.

"Monetary awards for approved ideas are limited only to active duty Air Force members and civilian employees," Boren noted. "Tangible benefits will remain the same as from the IDEA program and intangible benefits now range from $25 to $10,000."

For more information or to submit an idea, visit http://ipds.afpc.randolph.af.mil/ipds/ or call Boren at (605) 385-2578.