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FY18 ENLISTED CAREER FORCE CONTROLS (ECFC) PROGRAM

Date Signed: 10/10/2017
MARADMINS Number: 555/17

R 101900Z OCT 17
MARADMIN 555/17
MSGID/GENADMIN/CMC WASHINGTON DC MRA MP(UC)/F002//
SUBJ/FY18 ENLISTED CAREER FORCE CONTROLS (ECFC) PROGRAM//
REF/A/MSGID: MSG/CMC MRA MP/121320ZOCT16//
REF/B/MSGID: DOC/CMC MRA MM/YMD: 20060511//
REF/C/MSGID: DOC/CMC MRA MM/YMD: 20120614//
REF/D/MSGID: DOC/CMC MRA MM/YMD: 20150807//
REF/E/MSGID: DOC/CMC MRA MM/YMD: 20100908//
REF/F/MSGID: MSG/CMC/271716ZJUN13//
REF/G/MSGID: MSG/CMC MRA MP/051926ZJUL17//
REF/H/MSGID: DOC/USC TITLE 10 SS 1174/-//
REF/I/MSGID: DOC/CMC MRA MF/YMD: 20151230//
POC/L.E.BEINDORF/CIV/MPP-20/CMC MRA /POLICY ISSUES 703-784-9361//
NARR/REF A IS MARADMIN 539/16 ECFC PROGRAM FOR FY17. REF B IS MCO 1130.80A, PRIOR SERVICE AND RESERVE AUGMENTATION ENLISTMENTS INTO THE REGULAR MARINE CORPS. REF C IS MCO P1400.32D W/CH 2, THE ENLISTED PROMOTIONS MANUAL. REF D IS MCO 1900.16 W/CH 1, MARINE CORPS SEPARATION AND RETIREMENT MANUAL. REF E IS MCO 1040.31, THE ENLISTED RETENTION AND CAREER DEVELOPMENT MANUAL. REF F IS ALMAR 024/13 OUTLINING THE SERGEANTS MAJOR SLATING PROCESS. REF G IS MARADMIN 305/17 ANNOUNCING THE FY18 SELECTIVE REENLISTMENT BONUS (SRB) PROGRAM AND FY18 BROKEN SERVICE SRB(BSSRB) PROGRAM. REF H IS SECTION 1174, OF TITLE 10, UNITED STATES CODE GOVERNING SEPARATION PAY UPON INVOLUNTARY DISCHARGE OR RELEASE FROM ACTIVE DUTY. REF I IS MCO 1700.31 TRANSITION READINESS PROGRAM//
GENTEXT/REMARKS/1.  PURPOSE.  To provide commanders, senior enlisted leaders, career planners, and individual Marines with information regarding the origin, requirement for, and program elements of the ECFC program.  This MarAdmin supersedes ref a, and provides the ECFC policies for FY18.
2.  BACKGROUND.
2.a.  The Marine Corps implemented the ECFC program in 1985 to better manage the career force.  To date, the ECFC program has been successful in doing the following:
2.a.1.  Actively shape the inventory of Marines by grade and MOS to the requirements of the Marine Corps.
2.a.2.  Stabilize retention in order to standardize promotion tempo across all MOS(s).  The following are the Marine Corps' time in service (TIS) promotion targets:
Sgt                     4 years
SSgt                  8.5 years
GySgt                  13 years
1stSgt/MSgt          17.5 years
SgtMaj/MGySgt          22 years
2.b.  The end state of the ECFC program is to balance the inventory of Marines by grade and MOS to meet career force requirements.  Continued implementation of these force management strategies will help ensure that commanders are provided the right Marines by grade and MOS.
3.  INFORMATION.
3.a.  Selection by PMOS.  Marines are selected to the grades of Cpl and above by PMOS based on the needs of the Marine Corps.  This ensures the skills of the individual Marines selected for promotion are consistent with the vacancies in the force.  Marines are considered for promotion to SSgt and above based on PMOS held the day the selection board convenes, unless they have been assigned an intended MOS (IMOS) based on a CMC authorized lateral move, in which case they will be considered for promotion in their IMOS, not their PMOS, on the convening date of the board.
3.b.  Variable first time in-zone selection opportunity.  This control helps ensure standardized promotion tempo across MOS(s).  First time in-zone selection opportunities are as follows:
Promotion     Minimum           Standard        Maximum
to            Opportunity       Opportunity     Opportunity
SSgt          70%               80%             90%
GySgt         65%               75%             85%
MSgt/1stSgt   60%               70%             80%
SgtMaj/MGySgt 55%               65%             75%
Variable selection opportunity is applied in order to standardize promotion tempo as follows based on the degree of promotion stagnation:
3.b.1.  MOS(s) that are promoting within one year of the average TIS to promotion to that grade will receive the standard opportunity.  For example, 80 percent standard opportunity to SSgt means that for 100 allocations, 125 Sgts will be placed in zone.
3.b.2.  MOS(s) that are promoting slower than one year of the average TIS to promotion to that grade will receive the minimum opportunity.  For example, if there are 100 allocations in a slow promoting MOS to SSgt, 143 Sgts will be placed in zone.
3.b.3.  MOS(s) that are promoting faster than one year of the average TIS to promotion to that grade will receive the maximum opportunity.  For example, in a fast promoting MOS to SSgt, the maximum opportunity for promotion to SSgt would be applied.  If there are 100 allocations to SSgt, 111 Sgts will be placed in zone.
3.b.4.  Applying the minimum selection opportunity will increase the number of Marines placed in the promotion zone for the first time to compete for a given number of promotion allocations.  This will speed up the rate at which Marines in the slower promoting MOS(s) are considered for promotion.
3.b.5.  Applying the maximum selection opportunity will decrease the number of Marines placed in-zone for the first time to compete for a given number of promotion allocations.  This will slow the rate at which Marines in the faster promoting MOS(s) are considered for promotion.
3.c.  Enlisted grade structure reviews are conducted to ensure that each MOS has a pyramid-shaped structure requirement that:
3.c.1.  Supports promoting Marines at the TIS targets for each grade.
3.c.2.  Defines a logical career path that is achievable through the manpower process.  MOS Specialists, Total Force Structure Division, and OccFld Sponsors are now charged with ensuring that Table of Organization changes do not adversely affect the grade shape of their MOS(s).
3.d.  Restrictions on prior service accessions.  This program ensures that prior service Marines are not brought back into over strength MOS(s), thereby further slowing promotion tempo for Marines who have remained on active duty.  Per ref b, qualified prior service Marines who fit a critical Marine Corps requirement will be considered for reenlistment on a case-by-case basis.
3.e.  Control of meritorious promotions.  The Marine Corps continues to support the promotion of exceptional performers ahead of contemporaries.  However, the desire for such promotions must be balanced with the need to promote Marines in MOS(s) with vacancies.  Per ref c, authority is delegated to Commanding Generals and certain Commanding Officers to effect meritorious promotions to Cpl and Sgt.  Meritorious promotions to SSgt and Gysgt are provided to major commands and Marines in special duty assignments (Drill Instructor, Marine Security Guard, Recruiter, Marine Security Forces and Combat Instructor).  Ref c contains additional information about meritorious promotions.
3.f.  First Term Alignment Plan (FTAP).  The FTAP identifies the number of first-term Marines by PMOS the Marine Corps must reenlist to meet the requirements of the career force.  The number of boatspaces is based on career force structure requirements and projected inventory.
3.g.  Subsequent Term Alignment Plan (STAP).  STAP sets reenlistment goals for all MOS(s) with emphasis on short MOS(s) in the career force.  It is important to note that STAP goals are merely planning targets, not limits like FTAP goals.
3.h.  Service Limits.  Service limits ensure that Marines who have reached a certain year of service in their current grade without being selected for promotion are either separated from the active component at their EAS or are required to transfer to the FMCR.  Enforcement of service limits improves promotion opportunity for Marines in junior grades.  Note:  prior active service in another branch of the Armed Forces is counted when determining the service limits for staff sergeants and above.  Service limits are as follows:
Cpl              8 years active Marine Corps service
Sgt             10 years active Marine Corps service
SSgt            20 years active service
GySgt           22 years active service
1stSgt/MSgt     27 years active service
SgtMaj/MGySgt   30 years active service
3.h.1.  Mandatory transfer to the FMCR due to service limitations.  Marines eligible for retirement who are approaching service limits must transfer to the FMCR per ref d.  Marines approaching service limits who must request transfer to the FMCR are defined as follows:
3.h.1.a.  All SSgts approaching 20 years of service.
3.h.1.b.  GySgts approaching 22 years of service, or if twice passed for promotion, GySgts approaching 20 years of service or who have an EAS between 20 and 22 years of service.  Example:  a twice passed GySgt who will reach 20 years of service on 30 September 2018 with an EAS of 30 April 2018 must request a transfer to FMCR date of no later than 30 September 2018.
3.h.1.c.  1stSgts/MSgts approaching 27 years of service, or if twice passed for promotion, 1stSgts/MSgts approaching 22 years of service or who have an EAS between 22 and 27 years of service.  Example:  a twice passed MSgt who will reach 22 years of service on 17 July 2018 with an EAS of 31 May 2018 must request a transfer to FMCR date of no later than 31 July 2018.
3.h.1.d.  DC, MRA will retain service limit waiver authority for SgtMaj/MGySgt who request to serve beyond 30 years of service.
3.h.2.  Promotion Consideration
3.h.2.a.  Per ref d, Marines who must transfer to the FMCR due to the above limits may request promotion consideration in conjunction with transfer to FMCR via correspondence to CMC (MMSR-2) if their approved transfer to FMCR date is after the scheduled adjournment date of the next promotion board.
3.h.3.  Continuation of Service
3.h.3.a.  Cpls with 4 or more years of service who reenlist at the FTAP may be authorized a 4 or 5 (if required) year reenlistment.
3.h.3.b.  Sgts service limitation is 10 years or two failed selections to SSgt.  Sgt service limitation with a punitive reduction is 10 years.  Sgts that have not failed a selection to staff sergeant, is fully qualified for retention and is competitive for promotion may be authorized the following additional service based on the needs of the Corps up to twelve years of service:
Years of Service                   CMC (MMEA) authorization
Less than 8 yos                   may be reenlisted up to 48 months
More than 8 but less than 9 yos   may be reenlisted up to 36 months
More than 9 but less than 10 yos  may be extended/reenl up 24 months
More than 10 but less than 12     may be extended up 12 months
3.h.3.c.  The following applies to sergeants in relation to ECFC:
3.h.3.c.1.  All existing service contracts for sergeants will be honored regardless of TIS constraints.
3.h.3.c.2.  Upon the release of the results of the annual staff sergeant promotion board, those sergeants not selected for promotion twice (or more) will be denied further service beyond their existing EAS.  An extension of current contract that allows additional service for adequate transition of up to six months beyond the adjournment date of the recent staff board can be requested if current EAS is not beyond that date.  Those sergeants with one pass for promotion with less than 10 years of service may request an extension of their current contract to a date that is six months following the next annual SSgt promotion board to allow an opportunity for an additional promotion selection board.  Sergeants with one pass for promotion with more than 10 years of service will be denied further service beyond their existing EAS.  An extension of current contract that allows additional service for adequate transition of up to six months beyond the adjournment date of the recent staff board can be requested if current EAS is not beyond that date.  Example:  Sgt Smith with 11 years of service has an EAS of 20171030 and failed selection to staff sergeant for his first promotion consideration with board results being published 20170908.  Sgt Smith can request an extension of current contract not to exceed beyond 20180308 or exit the service at current EAS of 20171030.
3.h.3.c.3.  All sergeants, without a reduction in grade (except for administrative error reduction) at any point in their career, will normally be allowed a minimum of one opportunity for promotion to SSgt, as long as that opportunity for promotion comes prior to 13 years of total service.
3.h.3.d.  Per ref e, CMC (MMEA) will consider extension requests for GySgts, 1stSgts, and MSgts on a case by case basis, provided they do not exceed service limits.
3.h.3.e.  Marines requesting a waiver of ECFC:
3.h.3.e.1.  Who meet eligibility requirements to transfer to the FMCR, will submit an AA Form/Standard Naval Letter with justification, via the Marine's chain of command, up to the first General Officer, to include supporting command endorsements, to CMC (MMSR-2) for processing.  Marines may request an ECFC/service limit waiver of six months or less that does not cross the end of current fiscal year in conjunction with transfer to the FMCR.  Such requests only require a Bn/Sqdn level endorsement to Dir, MM for authorization.
3.h.3.e.2.  1stSgts/MSgts and below, who have been twice passed for promotion or who have met service limits, per para 3.h., will not be considered for service limit extensions greater than one year.
3.h.3.e.3.  Who do not meet eligibility requirements to transfer to the FMCR, or who are requesting a waiver of ECFC in conjunction with reenlistment/extension will submit a reenlistment/extension request through their command career planner via the Total Force Retention System (TFRS), with command endorsements through the first General Officer, to CMC (MMEA) for processing.
3.h.3.e.4.  Sgts subject to ECFC service limitations may apply for a waiver for service up to 13 years in extenuating circumstances through their command career planner via TFRS, with command endorsements through the first General Officer, to CMC (MMEA) for processing.  Examples of such circumstances are Marines deemed critical by their commanders to an upcoming unit deployment or Marines in a critically short MOS.  Waiver authority for such Marines resides with DC, MRA.
3.h.3.e.5.  No waiver request is required to be submitted by those sergeants when reenlisting/extending in order to gain obligated service to execute PCA/PCSO issued by CMC (MMEA).  Dir, MM is authorized to waive ECFC limitations up to twelve years of service for select sergeants that have not failed a selection to staff sergeant, is fully qualified for retention and is competitive for promotion.
3.h.3.e.6.  Per ref i, commanding officers ensure all eligible active duty Marines attend Transition Readiness Seminar (TRS) 12 to 14 months before their EAS but complete TRS no less than 180 days prior to that date.  Requests for an ECFC waiver based solely to complete the TRS attendance will not normally be approved.  Per ref i, virtual transition training is available and authorized in certain situations.
3.h.3.f.  Per ref f, sergeants major who desire consideration for Command Level Slating, but require a waiver of the 30 year service limit will be considered on a case-by-case basis
3.i.  Other Supporting Programs.  While not formally considered part of the ECFC program, the following programs support the goals of the ECFC program:
3.i.1.  SRB program.  The SRB program provides Marines in certain critical MOS(s) a monetary incentive to reenlist.  This helps the Marine Corps retain Marines in critically short MOS(s).  Ref g identifies those MOS(s) targeted for an SRB during FY18.  The SRB program may be extended, shortened, or modified throughout the fiscal year to meet manpower requirements and/or fiscal constraints.
3.i.2.  Separation Pay.  Facilitates transition to civilian life for those career Marines who have been denied further service.  Involuntary separation pay does not apply to those Marines who voluntarily separate from the Marine Corps.  Ref h stipulates that enlisted members with 6 or more (and not on an initial term of enlistment or an initial period of obligated service), but less than 20, years of active service immediately before discharge, and who are discharged involuntarily or are discharged as a result of the denial of reenlistment, are normally entitled to involuntary separation pay.  Ref e further address the current separation pay policy and to whom it applies.  Additional guidance on voluntary separation pay policies for FY18 may be available via separate MarAdmin.
3.i.2.a.  All sergeants subject to ECFC limits must submit for separations pay determination per ref e.  Only those denied further service are eligible for separations pay determination.
3.i.2.b.  Twice passed SSgts with less than 20 years of active service are not eligible for involuntary separation pay unless denied further service by CMC (MMEA).
4.  Marines interested in affiliation with a selected Marine Corps Reserve unit or the Active Reserve program should contact their local Prior Service Recruiter on their base or call 1-800-Marines.
5.  Action.  Commanders, senior enlisted leaders, and Career planners will familiarize all Marines with the contents of this bulletin.
6.  Reserve applicability.  This bulletin is not applicable to the Marine Corps reserve.
7.  Cancellation.  30 Sep 2018.
8.  Release authorized by BGen S.F. Benedict, Director, Manpower Plans and Policy Division.//