Over the last few months, Inspector General’s Office personnel have seen an increase of issues dealing with noncommissioned officer evaluation reports, or NCOERs. Some of the issues were noncommissioned officers, or NCOs, not being counseled; incorrect counseling dates; issues happening outside the rating period; and individuals who were not the rater completing the NCOER.
The NCOER has its own redress system which is in Department of the Army, or DA, Pamphlet 623-3, “Personnel Evaluation Reporting System,” dated June 5, 2012, chapter 6, but IG Office personnel can often address and resolve these issues locally prior to submission to Headquarters, Department of the Army.
Counseling is an essential part of the NCOER. The DA Form 2166-8, “NCOER Counseling Support Form,” provides evaluation information to ensure sound personnel management decisions can be made, and an NCO’s potential can be fully developed.
Counseling should be conducted quarterly and within the first 30 days of the rating period. The initial counseling should consist of the performance standards, what is expected of the NCO, the rating chain, duty description, and the meaning of values and responsibilities on the NCOER. The rater should also end the session by recapturing the key points covered on DA Form 2166-8-1 and have the rated NCO initial it.
Counseling also makes completing the NCOER easy.
The NCOER is comprised of five parts. They are administrative data, authentication, duty description, Army values/attributes/skills/actions and overall performance and potential. IG Office personnel recommend NCOs thoroughly view each section for inaccuracies and common mistakes.
Some Soldiers think their signature means they agree with the NCOER, but that is not true. DA PAM 623-3, Table 3-2 states, “The rated NCO’s signature verifies the following: They have seen the completed report, the administrative data (Part I) is correct (except Part I, k through o), the rating officials are proper (Part II), the duty description is accurate (Part III) and includes the counseling dates, the APFT and height/weight entries are correct (Part IV c), and that the rated NCO is aware of the appeals process.
It is important that rated NCOs and rating officials clearly understand the rated NCO’s signature does not constitute agreement or disagreement with the evaluations of the rater and/or senior rater. If the rated Soldier is unavailable, unable, or fails to sign the DA Form 2166-8 for any reason, the senior rater will either resolve the problem or explain why in DA Form 2166-8, Part V-e, and the rated Soldier’s signature is left blank. The report will not be delayed because it lacks the rated Soldier’s signature.”
Leaders must ensure they know what the regulation states. Each leader should regularly review Army Regulation 623-3, “Personnel Evaluation Reporting System,” dated June 5, 2012, and DA Pam 623-3, to assist in completing counselings and NCOERs.
Regulations change often, and leaders should set NCOs up for success. In instances where the NCO is not performing up to standard, then leaders have a leadership challenge to mentor and provide guidance for that NCO so he or she can meet the required performance standard.
For questions about this article, ratings or counselings, call Robinson, 533.3448.