You're tired of getting told what to do, working in the motorpool, want more money, want to make a difference, or all of the above. It's time to work towards promotion and here you will find out where to start and what you need to do to get promoted in the Army.
Here in part 3 we are going to discuss the SRB / ERB. This record is very important and usually your first impression to a board if they haven't seen or heard of you before. There is a reason why your SRB is usually a required document to have in your counseling packet, board packet, interview packet, or school packet. That in conjunction with counseling statements or evaluations gives the board member a quick snapshot of who you are and what you can accomplish.
Every time I do a counseling packet audit (that goes from junior enlisted troops to SSG alike), I always have them bring in an SRB to review. The more senior they are I ask them to identify any deficiencies prior to turning it into me. For the juniors, I usually highlight or red ink all the areas that need updated right there with them during the counseling session. I try to communicate with them and let them know the significance of the item and why they need to update it.
When I do an SRB scrub, these are the things I check:
1. GT score. If your score is under 110, future opportunities for specialty schools, programs, and other high speed opportunities will greatly limited. If this is the case, your promotion and progression will be more limited than others in your Military Occupational Specialty (MOS). If it is lower than 110, I immediately recommend that they go to the education center as soon as they have a chance and ask about the Basic Skills Education Program (BSEP). This program, if taken seriously, will help raise your GT score and make you more competitive.
2. Flag codes. It happens too often that a Soldier gets flagged for whatever reason and successfully overcomes the flag but there it is, a flag in the flag code section. This is something I have to keep an eye on and will talk to the training room or the 1SG as soon as possible to see what happened and what we can do to move forward. The last thing you want is to be passed over for an opportunity because you were fraudulently flagged for something that has already been remedied.
3. Military education. I check to see if it is empty or lacking for you rank. If you are a senior specialist and have no schools, well.... why is that? Did you have a flag that prevented you from attending? What is your PT score? I've come across my fair share of people who don't believe PT should be a large factor in determining seniority on the Order of Merit List (OML). I can see both sides of it and overall, there are only so many factors that you can legally use to prioritize people for things and well this is one of them and it is commonly used so it's best to stop fighting it and do your best to score as best you can. Overall, if you are a good Soldier and don't have have resident schools listed here, it helps me to keep an eye out for opportunities to let you go when they become available.
4. Basic Military Qualification (BMQ). Do you have a weapons qualification record in the system that reflects here? If not, get it updated. Is it out of date? Get to the range.
5. Correspondence CRS Total. The maximum course hours for promotion points change based on the rank you are trying to achieve. If you want to know what they are, check out your Promotion Point Worksheet (PPW) search our site to instructions if you don't know where to find it. If I am counseling you, I will set a goal in your plan of action during your monthly or quarterly counseling to complete a certain number of hours per month or quarter. This changes based on the person and what they have going on. Go to the Army Learning Management System (ALMS) to get started.
6. Civilian education. If this is empty, why isn't your HS completion here? It doesn't have to be but add it to make your record more complete if that's all you have. I will always ask if they have completed any college courses that should be identified here. Get those promotion points and get them added.
7. Certifications. Don't have your S1 add something that can't be counted towards your promotion points! You don't want to be audited and lose your rank because you thought it would be nice to put a certification that is required for your job here and be credited points that you shouldn't have been. There is a list of Army approved certifications by MOS that are worth points. Only add those on the list for your MOS. Check here to see what they are.
8. Awards and Decorations. First I check to see if you have the standard ribbons (usually not an issue), if you don't let's get it fixed by talking to S1. The next and most commonly missing thing from this section is your Marksmanship Badge. You can't wear something on you dress uniform if it's not on your ERB right? This can become a hot topic in a board. Well if that's the case, take your marksmanship badge off it it's not correctly recorded on your SRB. It should look something like this MQBE-P. Let's break this down, it stands for Marksmanship Qualification Badge Expert - Pistol. Every badge will start with MQB then be followed by the skill level followed by a dash - then the weapon system.
This is a hot topic to me not so much on the individual Soldier but it shows that not many leaders know that this is supposed to be here and less enforce it. Even more than that it makes me angry that S1 doesn't automatically have this function driven into their mind that when a weapons card is updated, updated the badge at the same time. This is a bit more difficult now that most training rooms have access to update weapons and PT scores through DTMS but this applies elsewhere as well. When you take an award or a badge certificate in to be updated on your SRB S1 should automatically ask you "do you need this scanned into iPerms?". Keep an eye on this and be an advocate for yourself and your Soldiers.
9. Spouse birthplace /Citz. If you are married, is this filled out? If not get it updated, talk to S1.
10. EFMP DT. If there is a date here, what is it? Is it past or coming up soon? Get your EFMP updated so it doesn't adversely affect your opportunities and where you can go.
11. Command (CMD) sponsored. If you are OCONUS, I check to see if this number matches the number of spouse/dependents listed above. If not, it's time to get it fixed so your family has the appropriate medical coverage and benefits awarded to them during your time OCONUS.
12. HT/WT. Ensure that your height and weight are up to date and included here by working with your training room or S1.
13. ACFT/APFT. Ensure that your most recent test event is updated here. by working with your training room or S1.
14. Mailing Address. Make sure that your current mailing address is listed here.
15. Assignment information. Finally the section that most people go to immediately. For juniors, make it as clean as possible, have S1 delete any repeating lines, known loss, incoming, or anything else that just takes up space that is useless for the board to know. Some leaders recommend also removing your basic training and Advanced Individual Training (AIT) assignments as well. If it's your first unit and that would leave you with one line, I wouldn't recommend it.
Hopefully this helps. Good luck.
Continue reading with SGT promotion preparation Part 1 Education
Continue reading with SGT promotion preparation Part 2 Schools and Courses
Continue reading with SGT promotion preparation Part 3 SRB
Continue reading with SGT promotion preparation Part 4 Board