As the Army reduces its combat operations and the forces are drawn down, the Temporary Early Retirement Authority will enable some Soldiers with between 15 and 20 years of service to draw early retirement.

FORT SILL, Okla. (29 Nov. 2012) -- During the past year, the Army's Qualitative Service Program, or QSP, was established to identify a number of noncommissioned officers in the rank of staff sergeant through command sergeant major for possible separation from the Army.

This includes Soldiers currently serving in the active component and Army Reserve AGR program.

The QSP consists of a series of centralized board processes designed to select and retain the highest quality NCOs who display the greatest potential for continued service, officials said. The selection process board for the QSP follows the same voting methodology applied to all current selection boards for promotion.

Personnel who have been denied continued service under the QSP need to know and understand the procedures as outlined in All Army Activities, or ALARACT message 066/2012, Enlisted Qualitative Service Program, and Army Regulation 635-200, Active Duty Enlisted Administrative Separations.

If a Soldier is identified as a candidate, he or she will be notified through their chain of command, starting at the lieutenant colonel level. Upon receiving notification they are being denied continued service under the QSP, Soldiers will be counseled on their options and the ramifications of the QSP in accordance with AR 635-200, Chapter 19.

Soldiers then have seven days to decide what options they are going to select regarding the decision by the selection board. Those options include appealing the QSP decision with the goal of being retained on active duty, requesting to be separated from the Army, requesting immediate retirement (Soldiers who have more than 20 years active federal service), and lastly, requesting to be scheduled for retirement (those with at least 17 years, nine months of active federal service). Once an option is chosen, the statement of option must be forwarded to the Army Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center through the Soldier's O-5 level chain of command.

If the Soldier decides to appeal the process, the appeal must be returned to the O-5 level chain of command within 60 days of being notified. The chain of command then has 30 days to forward it to USAEREC with a recommendation of approval or disapproval. The QSP appeals board will then consider the appeal and render a decision.

Selection for separation from the Army will be based on specific criteria as covered in each selection board memorandum of instruction in support of enlisted administrative separation policies, as outlined in AR 635-200. Those who are not eligible for retirement may be afforded the opportunity to continue their careers by volunteering for reclassification into a shortage MOS as long as they meet all requirements.

Under the QSP, there are three distinct separation selection programs. These programs are:

-- Qualitative Management Program, or QMP

-- Over-Strength Qualitative Service Program, or OS-QSP

-- Promotion Stagnation Qualitative Service Program, or PS-QSP

The QMP will look at sergeants first class through command sergeants major for denial of continued service based on performance, conduct and potential for advancement that is not conducive to Army standards.

The OS-QSP will be used to identify a number of NCOs by the end of fiscal 2013 for separation in the rank of staff sergeant through command sergeant major who are currently in an over-strength MOS.

The PS-QSP will look at individuals in the same ranks but who are in a particular MOS that is not currently promoting at a certain rank, thus creating a stagnant promotion environment within those MOSs.

Soldiers who believe they may fall under the Qualitative Services Program or would like more information about it, can review ALARACT 066/2012, AR 635-200 Chapter 19, or contact their unit retention NCO.

Page last updated Fri November 30th, 2012 at 09:48