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Billion-Dollar PCS Reform For Military Household Goods Moves

PCS reform to the tune of more than $6 billion was approved after a four-year struggle to place all military permanent-change-of-station (PCS) household goods moves under a single contract.

PCS moves require the military to use a contractor to pack, ship and deliver household goods for military members leaving one assignment for another whether stateside or overseas.

Why PCS Reform was Necessary

Military members have commonly experienced unnecessary delays, damaged household goods, lost or stolen household goods, and poor customer service from contractors. Under the old system, there was inadequate centralization or standardization to rely upon. PCS reform seeks to change that.

How long will it take? The new system is likely to become fully operational for the 2024 PCS season which typically runs between May and September.

“Peak PCS season” simply means that is when most military members get orders to relocate. PCS moves outside that window are possible, but the majority of them take place during the peak season.

Learn more: 10 Best PCS Benefits for Military Families

What Does PCS Reform Mean?

PCS reform means putting all PCS moves under a single contractor, a program called the Global Household Goods Contract. This was awarded to a company known as HomeSafe Alliance.

The contract was approved, the transition was scheduled and U.S. Transportation Command has gone on the record saying the new contractor’s operations would be phased in until the 2024 PCS season when the new contractor was scheduled to take over completely.

Details of the Reform

The Global Household Goods Contract is worth some $6.2 billion and is effective for over three years. How does the new contract work? It outsources the management of PCS moves under a single contract. U.S. Transportation Command or TRANSCOM oversees the contract, which is said to be the first of its kind associated with PCS move reform.

The contractor, HomeSafe Alliance, is tasked with assembling a network of moving companies and other moving service providers such as storage, transportation, and delivery. There are well above 300 thousand household goods shipments a year, costing more than $2 billion.

Transparent to the Consumer?

At press time, there are no promises that the new PCS contract or transition to that contract will be 100% transparent or seamless to the consumer. There may be issues along the way, and military members or families that experience trouble with their PCS move should take the following steps:

  • Fully document the issue. Take photos of any damage, where applicable. Make notes of dates and times of relevant incidents, especially where missed appointments, poor customer service, or other issues are evident.
  • Follow any claims procedures given to you by the contractor to the letter.
  • Report any problems to the losing or the gaining base Travel Management Office (TMO) or equivalent immediately and request assistance. If your problem occurs before departure, contact the losing base TMO, if the issue is on the other side of the move, contact the gaining base TMO.
  • Inform your chain of command via your command support staff if you have issues that are not resolved satisfactorily. You may need to elevate some issues through the chain of command or through other appropriate channels, especially if there are issues with broken customs seals on your household goods containers.

Related:

Military Benefits In 2023

TRICARE Basics

Enhanced Benefits for Disabled Veterans: The PACT Act 

About the author

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Joe Wallace is a 13-year veteran of the United States Air Force and a former reporter/editor for Air Force Television News and the Pentagon Channel. His freelance work includes contract work for Motorola, VALoans.com, and Credit Karma. He is co-founder of Dim Art House in Springfield, Illinois, and spends his non-writing time as an abstract painter, independent publisher, and occasional filmmaker.