Difficulties in Selected Army Reserves Recruiting Under the All-Volunteer Force

FPCD-79-71: Published: Aug 20, 1979. Publicly Released: Aug 20, 1979.

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Recruiting of the Nation's selected Reserves has changed since the draft ended in 1972. A steady decline in the numbers of Selected Army Reserve and Army National Guard recruits is increasing the gap between reserve troop requirements and strength. The Army's recruiting plans have been directed at overcoming these shortages. In addition, there has been a decline in recruit quality and an increase in turnover rates.

The quality of non-prior-service recruits as defined by the Department of Defense (DOD) has also changed since the All-Volunteer Force replaced the draft. DOD has taken or is considering numerous actions to improve Selected Reserves recruiting such as increasing the number of full-time recruiters, increasing advertising funds, and introducing enlistment and reenlistment bonuses. In addition, there are several proposals and tests under way to attract new recruits and to reduce turnover. Many of the proposals and tests are directed towards the high quality male with no prior military service.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of DOD should direct the Army to establish recruiting objectives based on the manpower needs of its Reserve components; adjust fiscal year 1979 and future objectives accordingly; bring the recruiting objectives for the Army Reserve in line with its goals for non-prior- and prior-service personnel; reassess its policy of enlisting in the Selected Reserves those persons it determined were not acceptable for active duty; and determine the effect of (1) 1- and 2-year enlistments, (2) nonobligated reservists, and (3) the practice of not ordering reservists to active duty for not participating in drills on mobilization and recruiting needs.

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