|Can't meet the re-enlistment quotas? Reduce the quotas!
***** Army exceeds retention goals
By Jon R. Anderson, Stars and Stripes
European edition, Friday, November 7, 2003
. . . "We needed 51,000 soldiers to re-enlist, and we got 54,151,"
said Sgt. Maj. James Vales, a senior retention manager at Army
headquarters in Washington.
Of those, Vales said, 1,955 soldiers re-enlisted at the last minute,
taking advantage of an 11th-hour $5,000 bonus offered in the last two
weeks of the fiscal year. Nearly half of those takers were midcareer
soldiers with fewer than 10 years in the Army, he said.
Re-enlistment quotas are designed to help manpower managers keep the
Army at full strength with 480,000 active-duty soldiers, Vales said.
This year's re-enlistment success comes after the Army dropped its
goals twice over the past 12 months. Initially, Army officials had
tasked retention noncommissioned officers to keep 57,000 soldiers
from getting out of the Army.
"The goal for careerists was totally unattainable," said Sgt. Maj.
Luis Santos Jr., referring to the re-enlistment quota for soldiers
who had already spent 10 years in uniform and are widely considered
the easiest to persuade to re-enlist because they're over the halfway
hump to a 20-year retirement. Santos is the top retention manager in
In response to the outcry from retention NCOs in the field, the goal
was quickly reduced by 3,000 troops at the beginning of the fiscal
year. A few months later, another 3,000 troops were dropped from the
first-termers' goal. . . .
- Stars and Stripes reporter Kent Harris contributed to this report.