Major commanders throughout the Army have been authorized to re-enlist some 5,600 soldiers in overstrength specialties whose current enlistments will expire in fiscal 2013 or 2014.
The special retention program, called the Commanders Allocation Process, was launched this year as a force alignment tool for the coming drawdown that will require the Army to shed at least 40,000 soldiers in four years.
In the past two months, about 2,000 soldiers have re-enlisted under CAP.
The program is targeted at junior enlisted soldiers of the Regular Army who are coming to the end of their first enlistment, but who hold a military occupational specialty that is overstrength, or projected to become overstrength, as reflected in the in/out reclassification calls.
As of mid-June, CAP is targeted at seven combat arms, combat support and combat service support MOSs, including 19D cavalry scout, 25B information technology specialist, 88M motor transport operator, 91D power generator mechanic and 92A automated logistics specialist.
While re-enlistment policies historically have required soldiers in overstrength MOSs to reclassify or leave the Army, CAP authorizes a limited number of re-ups among soldiers who will remain in their current MOS.
Each of the Army’s major commands has authorizations under CAP. The commands are closely monitored by the retention and reclassification branch of Human Resources Command to make sure they do not exceed those authorizations.
The major commands with authorizations for retention-eligible Skill Level 1 soldiers in the targeted MOSs are: Forces Command, Intelligence and Security Command, Military District of Washington, Network Enterprise Technology Command, Training and Doctrine Command, Army Central Command, Army Europe, Army Pacific, and Army Special Operations Command.
Personnel officials caution that while re-up-eligible soldiers may not want to leave the comfort zone of their current MOS, even if it is overstrength, they should determine whether people are getting promoted in that specialty. If not, they should determine whether there is another MOS in which they can increase their promotion potential.
“If a soldier’s MOS is overstrength, as determined by the in/out calls, that soldier should determine if it is time to move to an MOS the Army will need in the future,” said Jim Bragg, chief of HRC’s retention and reclassification branch. “Soldiers are rolling the dice if they stay in an overstrength MOS.”