Enlisted Centralized Selection Boards
Frequently Asked Questions

How does this ensure readiness?

These policy changes support the Army readiness mission by addressing a means to react to emerging requirements. We must ensure the Army remains ready as the world's premier combat force. The objective is to fill authorized NCO spaces with the 'best-qualified' Soldiers by selection from an annual OML that identifies all 'fully-qualified' NCOs for promotion. The revised manner in how centralized board products are used is expected to improve readiness, morale, retention, and the professional development of our NCO Corps, consistent with sustaining an All-Volunteer Army.

What was wrong with the old system?

The past practice of selecting NCOs for promotion with an obligation to promote everyone on the list creates MOS/skill imbalances. Current and past practice relied on selections against forecasted requirements 24 to 28 months out. Due to unpredictable loss behavior and changing requirements, this resulted in literally hundreds of promotions for which no requirement existed at the time of promotion. Additionally, the system was non-responsive to emerging requirements stemming from Army leadership decisions.

How does this work as a talent management tool?

This is an Army talent management effort, refining personnel policies to better support our leaders with selecting and employing the 'best-qualified' Soldiers into the right job, with the right training, at the right time. The Army will transition from time-based management processes to merit-based; utilizing an OML to identify NCOs for training, promotion, assignment and utilization and ultimately, continuation on active duty based on a board's determination of NCOs with the greatest potential. This will enhance the Army's ability to employ Soldiers to the maximum extent by utilizing the unique talents of each individual.

What is expected of leaders as we implement this?

Army leaders at all echelons are required to conduct counseling, design and implement detailed training/developmental plans to assist individual Soldiers to overcome deficiencies, which prepares him/her for increased responsibility.

How often will the boards take place?

The Army will conduct five annual (recurring) boards to assess NCOs and place them on an OML, based on merit. Each MOS will have an OML, ranking NCOs from best to least qualified.