Reserve Components and National Guard Recruiting

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1977-08-12.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                           DCEUMENT RESUME
 03080 -   A22734041

 [Reserve Components and National Guard Recruiting].
 n-157371. august 12, 1977. 2 pp.                    FPCD-77-68;

 Report to John ?. White, Assistant Secretary, Department
 Defense; by . L. Krieger, Director, Federal Personnel    of
 Compensation Div.                                      and

Issue Area: Personnel Managerert and Compensation
Contact: Federal Personnel and Compensation Div.    (300).
Budget F nction: National Defense: Department of Defense
    Military (except procureme.t   contracts) (051).
Organization Concerned: Department of the Air Force;
    of the Army; Department of the Navy.

            Durirg a survey of the recruitment practices of the
  military services for Reserve and National Guard  personnel,
  several potential problems were noted. Findings/Conclusions:
  There are significant differences in the policies
                                                      and Frocedures
  that each reserve component uses in recruiter selection
 criteria, deployment, length of training and topic
 utilization. The Peserves appear to be coordinating coverage, and
 recruiting advertising programs with the active forc3-s,
 Guard components are acting independently The effectiveness but the
advertising was questioned in a previous GAO report.              of
capability of the existing management to implement       The
 recruitment programs will determine whether the desired
are ach;eved. Consideration should be given to analyzing results
cost benefits and effectiveness of trends towards
service program compared with maximizing the         a  nonprior
service personnel. Various service enlistment potential    of prior
                                                 options should be
studied.     change in assumptions about the eligible male
,    ulation could change the recruiting emphasis and
studied. (Author/FTW)                                   should be
                                UNITED STATES GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE
                                        WASHINGTON, D.C.   2048

         P1RAL PrmSONML   AND
         COM4T0I4    CI

Co                                                                   AUG 12     I

     )      ~The onorable John P. White
              Assistant Secretary of Defense

               Dear Mr. White:

                    We have concluded our survey (code 961056) of the
               policies, procedures, and practices the military services
               follow for recruiting Reserve and National Guard personnel.
               Our work was conducted in the New Orleans, Louisiana,
               and Atlanta, Georgia, regions and Washington, D.C.

                      During our survey we noted several potential problems
               that merit your attention.
                      -- The Reserves and National Guard are enlarging their
                         recruiter forces. Our survey indicated that there
                         are significant differences in the policies and pro-
                         cedures each reserve component uses in recruiter
                         selection criteria, deployment, length of training
                         and topic coverage, and utilization.    In our March 5,
                         1976, report to the Congress, "mproving the Effective-
                         ness and Efficiency f Recruiting," we addressed the
                         issue of recruiter force manageaqment for the active
                         forces and believe that some of our recommendations
                        might improve the reserve components' recruiting
                     -- The Reserves appear to be coordinating their recruiting
                        advertising programs with the active forces. The
                        Guard components are acting independently. Since ad-
                        vertising is an expensive recruiting means with some
                        questions about its effectiveness, we suggest that the
                        issues addressed in our March 29, 1976, report to the
                        Congress, "Advertising for Military Recruiting: How
                        Effective s It?," be considered as you expand the
                        advertising program for all Reserve Components and the
                        National Guard.

                     -- Our observations at the operational level have raised
                        a question about whether the existing managerial capa-
                        bility is sufficiently strong to economically and effi-
                        ciently implement expanded and accelerated recruitment


        programs. Without a strong managerial capability, the
        desired results may not be achieved.

     -- The trend is shifting towards a nonprior service pro-
        gram as compared to maximizing the potential of prior
        service personnel. While we are aware of the constraints
        of grade authorizations in Reserve units, consideration
        should be given to analyzing the cost benefits and
        effectiveness of adjusting authorizations to accommo-
        date the potential for reserve recruiting represented
        by prior service personnel.

     -- Three services have only one enlistment option for
        nonprior service personnel consisting of an active
        duty tour of 6 months followed by a 5-1/2-year
        reserve tour. The Navy offers a 2- or 3-year active
        duty tour program, which is followed b     reserve
        tour to complete 6 years. Although we have not
        fully analyzed the Navy's effectiveness in meeting
        total requirements, we believe the program merits
        your review for use by the other services.
     -- Recruiting emphasis is determined, at least in part,
        by assessing the male population that is qualified and
        available for military service. We note that out of
        the current 10.6 million 17- to 21-year old males, the
        military establishes a prime target of about 1 to 1.5
        million to fill a quota of about 380,000 for the active
        duty forces. A change in the assumptions made about
        qualifications and availability could substantially
        alter recruiting emphasis and subsequent results.
        Unnecessarily constraining the eligible male popula-
        tion may result in the active duty and the Reserve
        recruiters competing for the same population. We
        suggest that a close study of the constraints imposed
       by assessment methods be made, particularly if such
       studies can identify a reserve recruiting profile not
       now being considered.

     we would appreciate being advised of any plans or
actions contemplated or underway on the issues, and we are
willing to discuss further our survey observations.

                              Sincerely yours,

                             H. L. Krieger