By Sgt. 1st Class Corey BealMarch 12, 2014
FORT MCCOY, Wis. - Several major changes to Officer Evaluation Reports will take effect April 1.
To explain these changes, a U.S. Army Reserve Mobile Training Team conducted a two-day train-the-trainer session at the 88th Regional Support Command Headquarters, Fort McCoy, Wis., Jan. 16-17.
Lt. Col. Mitch DeMarais, who led the OER USAR MTT, said the revisions of DA Form 67 from the -9 to the -10 would improve the process and make evaluations much more relevant.
Capt. Brian Bell, the 88th RSC senior human resources officer, said all officers need to be aware that these revisions are not just the updating of a form - they are a whole new way of doing business.
"We have finally moved away from the thought process of one size fits all," said Bell. "These changes keep the OER highly adaptive in the assessment of leadership competencies and alleviate many of the complaints voiced by officers over the current process."
Some of the key revisions according to DeMarais and the current OER brief include:
-There are now four different versions of the OER specifically tailored toward similar grade plates. These plates include Company Grade (second lieutenant through captain and warrant officer-one through chief warrant officer-two, Field Grade (major through lieutenant colonel and chief warrant officer three through five), Strategic Leader (colonel), and General Officer (brigadier general).
-Regulation now requires that an individual's "immediate" supervisor will be the rater and the rater's "rater" will be the senior rater.
-Intermediate raters will now be limited to dual supervisory situations, some specialty branches, and units where the senior rater does not meet minimum senior rater rank requirements with regard to warrant officers.
-Officers with non-Army rating chains will now have supplementary reviews conducted by an Army officer.
-All rating chains must all be approved by the next higher headquarters up to the three-star level.
-Performance will now be assessed based on leadership attributes and competencies as outlined in Army Doctrine Reference Pamphlet 6-22. As the updated doctrine on leadership, ARDP 6-22 outlines the behaviors related to leadership competencies and core attributes to asses officer performance.
-Raters and senior raters can no longer comment on both performance and potential. Instead, raters will only comment on 'Performance' and senior raters will only comment on 'Potential.'
-Raters can now annotate the rated officer's performance as compared to all of the officers the rater has rated throughout his or her career.
-Raters, just like senior raters, will now have a profile to manage and be limited to the number of top-box checks they can give.
-A new OER support form is now mandatory for all officers, colonel and below, in accordance to MILPER Message 13-349. The new support form aligns with Army leadership doctrine and mirrors the company grade officer evaluation reports which will make writing evaluations easier.
-Raters can now indicate up to three broadening assignments and three operational assignments which the rated officer is best suited for. These assignment suggestions will be searchable online and assist career managers in selecting the right officer for the right assignment.
Bell said he is excited to see these changes take place - both as a human resources professional and as a professional officer.
"I am incredibly optimistic about these changes," said Bell. "Above everything else, OERs will now have clearly established standards which define performance and potential to ensure only the best officers are recognized and promoted."
With all of these changes also comes a new platform to execute them. Evaluations and support forms will now be completed using the Army Human Resources Command Evaluation Entry System.
"Unlike the legacy system of MyForms, EES is a fully automated and integrated system which operates in real time allowing the status and content of forms to be seen at every stage," said Bell. "This makes the process much more efficient, increases accountability and keeps an accurate record of OERs."
HRC has established an EES Web page: (https://evaluations.hrc.army.mil/index.html) to help familiarize soldiers with the system and work through the creation of profiles, support forms and OERS.
Soldiers are also encouraged to visit the HRC Evaluations Systems Homepage at (www.hrc.army.mil/TAGD/Evaluation%20Systems%20Homepage). There, soldiers can view updated briefs and gain more knowledge on what to expect.