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U.S. Defense to Use AI to Discover Talent

Image Credits: ang.af.mil

There’s a lot of talent in the guard and reserve forces that the Department of Defense (DOD) could be using but is not aware of such as reservists in their civilian jobs might be working on cloud computing, software engineering, cybersecurity, or any number of other in-demand skills, according to Scott Sumner, technical project manager at the Defense Innovation Unit’s Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning Portfolio.

The DOD is hampered in its efforts to locate these individuals because it does not possess the resources necessary to do so. The department will be able to look for the appropriate matches with the assistance of Gig Eagle’s AI-powered app.

The platform will take into consideration the reservist’s skill preferences as well as the biographical information that they enter the app, including their existing skill sets. The algorithm that controls the AI will focus on terms that are similar and imply or infer a specific talent or expertise. After that, a hiring manager from the DOD will be provided with a ranked list of potential candidates. It is also possible for things to work in the opposite direction as the reservists could possibly find a hiring manager within the DOD who is looking for their skill set.

According to Sumner, the goal is not to remove the individual from their current military occupational speciality or remove them from their current civilian job. Instead, it will be for meeting short-term demands, which would occupy the time that the reservist would ordinarily spend in their military position if they were working there full-time.

As a result, the word “gig” is included in the name of the application. Sumner mentioned that the DIU had a series of discussions with different agencies about this initiative with potential vendors and received feedback from the commercial sector to evaluate what would be viable.

It should also be mentioned that participation in Gig Eagle is entirely optional, even though it’s highly likely that a large number of reservists would like to take advantage of the app in order to determine what areas of particular interest might pertain to them and what aspects of their lives might be beneficial to their own personal growth.

The senior individual mobilisation augmentee for Cross-Mission Ground and Communications Enterprise at the Space and Missile Systems Centre of the Space Force, Christopher “CJ” Johnson, stated that they are interested in Gig Eagle for the purpose of finding citizen-airmen with highly technical skills to augment its digital workforce. “As you can imagine, we have a lot of needs related to engineering, data and cybersecurity and information network disciplines,” said Johnson.

Johnson emphasised that Gig Eagle will be a breakthrough method for maximising the use of talent. Not only within the Department of Defense (DOD), but also within the commercial sector, there are enormous market inefficiencies when it comes to finding talent. The DIU has extended invitations to certain possible vendors to give pitches and look at the prototypes that have been selected.

On the other hand, the Western Air Defense Sector recently introduced Battle Management Training NEXT (BMTN), a system that combines artificial intelligence, machine learning, biometrics, and natural language processing capabilities into a single command and control training system. The National Defense Authorization Act for the fiscal year 2021 included a provision by Congress that set aside US$ 3 million to be used for the development of the initial prototype.

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