Cover: Estimating the Cost of On-the-Job Training in Military Occupations

Estimating the Cost of On-the-Job Training in Military Occupations

A Methodology and Pilot Study

Published 1974

by Robert M. Gay

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The conversion to an all-volunteer military has greatly increased interest in the cost of training first-term enlisted personnel. This report (1) develops a method of estimating military on-the-job training (OJT) costs and relationships between these costs and the personal attributes of trainees, and (2) evaluates the feasibility of this technique. The method of estimation is a straightforward application of modern human capital theory; investment in OJT is measured as the present value of the sum of positive differences between an individual's military pay and productivity over time. In a pilot study conducted at Norton Air Force Base with members of the largest Air Force specialty (Aircraft Maintenance Specialists), OJT costs were estimated to average $6600 even though all trainees had attended an Air Force technical school costing about $3200. Results suggest that the "typical trainee" approach used in previous studies gives biased estimates. Estimated relationships between trainee attributes and OJT costs are presented.

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