and Pay System (APPS)
The Afghan Personnel and Pay System (APPS) is
designed to integrate and automate ". . . all aspects of human capital
management for authorizations, recruiting, personnel record keeping and
transactions, standardized compensation, payroll generation,
disbursement instructions of payroll, financial accounting for payroll
and retirement/pension management to make the ANDSF more sustainable,
affordable and effective". 1.
The DoD 1225 report of June 2016 says that "APPS
is an enterprise resource planning system that will integrate existing
MoD and MoI systems for personnel management and payroll into a single
platform providing timely and accurate accountability of all personnel,
including civilians, within the MoD and MoI". 5.
The system, once fully implemented, will be used
and maintained in Afghanistan by Afghan police and Army personnel. It
was hoped that the Afghans would be able to transition to the APPS in
2016 but it appears that progress has been slow. 2.
Advisors and Staff at Resolute Support
headquarters in Kabul have been working for a number of years to assist
the Afghans to implement the APPS - but progress has been slow. A number
of civilian and military personnel have rotated through Afghanistan
working on this project. 3.
The staff members and advisors working within
Essential Function 4 at Resolute Support headquarters are facing a
daunting task in trying to implement the APPS within the Ministry of
Defense. The track record of getting the Afghans to adopt computerized
systems is not good. Many of the members of the ANDSF are illiterate and
most do not have computer skills. Access to computers within the MoD and
MoI is limited and the country is just not wired for Internet access.
These complicated computer systems may eventually be up and running at
the MoD and MoI in the future but one has to wonder how well the systems
will work at the corps and police zone levels . . . and below.
APPS - A Problematic Approach. There are a number
of factors that are affecting the effective implementation of APPS.
Corruption, of course, is the number one issue - taking a slice of the
pay of existing police and soldiers and/or pocketing the salaries of
'ghost' members of the ANDSF is an enriching enterprise for many
Afghan commanders. Illiteracy and lack of computer skills within the
MoD, MoI, and ANDSF in general is another. Additional factors include
lack of Internet infrastructure, an inadequate Afghan banking system,
dsyfunctional legacy computer systems, lack of electricity, stand-alone
payroll data bases at regional levels not tied into the central MoI and
MoD systems, and more.
1. Explanation in quotes taken from the RS NATO
portal on May 21, 2016. At this time the APPS was advised by the Project
Manager (PM APPS) office under the direction of the Combined Security
Transition Command - Afghanistan (CSTC-A).
2. For the date of fielding for the APPS see the
Quarterly Report to Congress, SIGAR, January 2016, page 82.
3. For an idea of the type of civilian advisors
who are working on the APPS program read
"Pearisburg native helps to improve reliability of Afghan army pay
system", The Roanoke Times, November 11, 2016.
4. For some history on implementing personnel and
pay systems read Afghan National Army: Millions of Dollars at Risk
Due to Minimal Oversightj of Personnel and Payroll Data, SIGAR
Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, SIGAR 15-54 Audit
Report, April 2015.
5. See page 12, Enhancing Security and
Stability in Afghanistan, Department of Defense, DoD 1225 report,
http://www.defense.gov/ . . .
Support to Payroll Management MOIA and Police
Development, Law and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan (LOTFA),
Quarter Progress Report - July-September 2015, November 2015.
www.af.undp.org/content/dam/afghanistan/ . . . /LOTFA-3QPR-2015.pdf