Fellow Generals Officers and Commanders,

Since 1969, the Army has conducted annual centralized selection boards to select NCOs for promotion with the intent of satisfying force structure requirements. Selection has historically been by three-character MOS to meet projected requirements -typically two years in the future because of the mandatory PME training requirements post-selection.

That will now completely change, starting with the CSM/SGM board that will convene in August 2019. The Army will begin a phased approach to shift management practices from time-based to merit-based. It won't happen overnight. This multi-year endeavor begins with changing how promotion sequence numbers are established. Instead of being based on a Soldier's time in grade, time in service, and date of birth, the Army will use an Order of Merit List (OML) to establish them, recognizing talent accordingly.

Over the next several years, additional changes include the use of a board's OML to better inform the assignment decision process, identify Soldiers for attendance to professional military education courses, promotion, and eventually, potentially eliminating retention control points with an individual's continued service based on their performance and potential, instead of time in service.

The current practice of publishing an annual list of Soldiers for promotion to NCO ranks, sergeant first class and above, will end. Individuals will see their OML standing in the Army Career Tracker. Based on the annual assessments, they can see how they compare with their peers by military occupational specialty and rank. This communication between the Army and affected NCOs, will be private. Official board results of all fully qualified NCOs will be published without OML rankings. However, those NCOs found most-qualified will be annotated accordingly. All NCOs found not fully qualified for potential promotion will be informed separately through their chain of command.

It is my hope you will engage your Soldiers, inform them about this, and arm them with tools they need in order to succeed. Please see the attached fact sheet for details.

Thanks for all that you do to take great care of Soldiers and their Families.

Respectfully,

Tom Seamands
LTG, DCS G-1