Incirlik Readiness: The pursuit of perfection keeps the 39th MXS ready

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Chase Hedrick
  • 39th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
Editor's Note: This is the second in a series of articles designed to highlight mission readiness at Incirlik Air Base.

With hundreds of maintenance actions completed every month and a library of more 2,000 technical orders showing procedures on how to do them, getting the job done perfectly the first time, every time is critical to the 39th Maintenance Squadron mission.

Tucked into the corner of a maintenance hangar on the edge of the flight line, the 39th MXS quality assurance section works side by side with maintenance flights to evaluate the squadron's performance and identify ways to improve.

"Quality assurance as a whole acts as the commander's eyes and ears out in the maintenance section," said Tech. Sgt. Steve Paynter, 39th MXS chief inspector. "We go out into the flights and validate that the equipment is functional and individuals are properly trained. Then we report that information and track those trends through data collection so we can put together plans for the future."

These plans and reports are part of the maintenance standards and evaluation program which details requirements and expectations for the inspection process, he said. The program is revised and released quarterly to flights to provide as much transparency in the inspection process as possible.

"We have an evolving standard that we measure to," said Staff Sgt. Chris Davaz, 39th MXS weapons flight inspector. "As our processes change over time, we're continually evaluating how people are meeting that standard. As our technical proficiency grows over time, we're improving the standard to produce a higher quality product."

Expectations of excellence are calibrated to current levels of proficiency, and positive trends identified by the inspectors during their daily visits are checked to see if they can be replicated in the other flights, and negative trends are quickly resolved, said Paynter.

"If a training opportunity presents itself then each of these inspectors, who have been identified as technical specialists in their field, are ready for it," he said. "They were hand-selected for their knowledge. We wouldn't have individuals out there evaluating and inspecting if they weren't at the top of their game."

Maintainers understand the critical nature of quality assurance, said Paynter, adding that while some may feel the need to change their behavior when an inspector is nearby, the Airmen in the 39th MXS are open to having their skills assessed and being shown areas for improvement.

"I think the squadron here really does know we're here to help," he said. "It's much better for us to identify issues, deficiencies and those kinds of things before a real problem develops."

The receptiveness of the maintainers to this drive for excellence coupled with the quality assurance section's relentless pursuit of perfection keep the 39th MXS and the 39th Air Base Wing ready for anything.