Maj. Gen. Richard Mustion, commanding general of Army Human Resources Command, met with key leaders and field and company grade officers Nov. 13 to 14 at Fort Riley to discuss upcoming changes to the Army’s force structure and end strength, as well as the planned implementation of a new officer evaluation report.
Mustion’s visit was one of many he and senior HRC leaders have made to Army installations around the world over the past several months to educate Soldiers about Army personnel system changes.
“It was important for HRC to come and visit Fort Riley to engage the Soldiers and leaders of the 1st (Infantry) Division to discuss the many things that are going in the U.S. Army in the human resources area,” Mustion said.
The most immediate change will be a new officer evaluation report, which is scheduled to be implemented in April 2014.
It will be the first time the evaluation report has been revised since 1997.
Mustion described the current evaluation report as an effective tool, but said “it’s not reflective of our current leadership doctrine.”
He said the new tool was designed to evaluate officers in a line with the leadership attributes and competencies of current doctrine.
“It’s also designed as a leader development tool to help us shape the behaviors of our officer corps as they move up the ranks,” Mustion added.
The new OER system aims to capture and clarify indicators of top performance to ensure officers are appropriately developed, mentored, recognized and advanced.
Other changes include incorporating a rater profile, the transition to forms based on grade plates, refined senior rater techniques and the identification of operational and broadening assignments.
Besides the new OER, Mustion also spoke to Soldiers about the Army’s drawdown of forces.
“Our Soldiers and families need to be aware that our Army is going to get smaller,” he said.
The projected end strength for Sept. 30, 2015, is 490,000 – about 42,000 Soldiers less than those currently in the Army.
“Unfortunately, we are going to have to ask some top-quality Soldiers who have served our nation selflessly to leave our Army,” Mustion said. “We’re going to set the conditions for those Soldiers to be successful as they transition through our Army Career and Alumni Program and other transition assistance programs, so that our Soldiers can be successful and can benefit from our service to the nation, and become better citizens when they take the uniform off. “
Mustion said the Army has “invested heavily in transition assistance programs” to make sure this happens.
For those who want to stay on the Army team, Mustion advised Soldiers to continue to do their very best; continue to improve themselves personally, as well as professionally; complete both civilian academic work and structured self-development for noncommissioned officers; seek out hard assignments; perform well and let that performance speak for itself.
Mustion also said as retention decisions are being made, Soldiers would be well advised to make sure their records are accurate.
Command Sgt. Maj. Charles Smith, senior enlisted noncommissioned officer, HRC, who was travelling with the general, offered the same advice.
“It is very important that you keep your records updated,” he said in a brief to junior noncommissioned officers Nov. 14. “Your records are going to speak for you in the near future.”
By Sgt. 1st Class Jonathan Wiley
1st Inf. Div. Public Affairs
PHOTO: Maj. Gen. Richard Mustion, commanding general, Army Human Resources Command, addresses field grade officers Nov. 13 at Fort Riley. (Sgt. 1st Class Jonathan Wiley | 1st Inf. Div.)