Identification cards are an important aspect of military life, and a new online destination makes it easier for families to apply for the useful items. Known as the Real-time Automated Personnel Identification System (RAPIS), the website was developed by the Defense Manpower Data Center, and makes it easier for military families to update their personal information, The Birmingham News reports.
The new destination makes things much more streamlined for servicemembers. Previously, they would have had to make the trip to the Defense Manpower Data Center, submit an application in person and wait for their ID to be made. Now, they can enter all their information from the comfort of their own homes on the computer, and only have to visit the office in person to pick up the finished product.
"This is a big project," Mary Dixon, the center's director, told the newspaper. "It takes away time from your work, and if you are separated – maybe the spouse is out on a ship or on deployment or your child is away at college – it makes it a huge problem."
The online destination could help approximately 3.7 million families, Dixon says. Maintaining an up-to-date ID card is essential because it provides families and servicemembers with access to benefits and other privileges.