Monday, January 14, 2013

Navy FITREP gouge



It's FITREP time, for O-3 and O-2! So, if you're working on your FITREP, here's some advice:

1. Review your electronic record at the same time. Go here and download the electronic record review:

http://navygrade36bureaucrat.blogspot.com/p/review-your-electronic-record.html

2. Read the Navy's instruction. Pay particular attention to limits on EP/MP and reporting periods.

http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/reference/instructions/BUPERSInstructions/Documents/1610.10C.pdf

3. Print out your last FITREP. Go to BUPERS, then your OMPF, click on your last FITREP and print it.

4. Sit down and write out everything you've done over the reporting period. Be sure to include:

- Qualifications (watches, warfare devices, PMS, equipment, etc.)
- Schooling (Navy schools, classes for your degree, online classes from DoD schools like DAU.mil, etc.)
- Personal performance (Did you blow away your department exams? Were you the best OOD on watch? Did you respond best during EOOW drills?)
- Division performance (Did your division produce the sailor of the quarter? Did you reduce waste in spending? Was your division the best on the waterfront for PMS inspections?)
- Command collaterals (Were you the Voting Assistance Officer? What about a Command Casualty Assistance Calls Officer?)
- Grab bag (Did you get nominated for an award by an outside agency? Did you learn a foreign language? Were you selected to host a VIP visit? Did a visiting Admiral personally comment on your awesomeness?)

Write down everything, even if it seems silly.

5. Now, go through your list and quantify the results:

- If you were the Voting Assistance Officer, what percentage of sailors at the command were registered to vote?
- If you were the training officer, how many people got their SWO pins during the reporting period?
- If you were a 3M DIVO, were your maintenance spot checks completed on time, and reveal no significant problems?

6. Now, prioritize. The top priority should be mission related bullets with quantifiable results. Those are your best bullets, because if they are read out loud at a selection board, they answer the five Ws and stand on their own.

7. Decide on an opening and closing statement. Statements should be tailored to reality. For example, if you've been at the command a bit as an ensign, then this statement:

NUMBER 2 of 12 ENSIGNS. READY FOR MORE RESPONSIBILITY!

is a good statement, but if you just showed up, it should read more like this:

GREAT INITIATIVE...A SELF STARTER! CONTINUING TO EXCEL IN HIS NEW COMMAND

Some thoughts:
- Don't waste space with "Promote to LT right now!" You'll get promoted at the 2 and 4 year points for LTJG and LT. Meritorious promotion is not going to happen.
- Rankings mean a lot. If you're in the EP or MP realm, you'll want something along the lines of "#2 of 20 LTs at my command!"
- Don't make ridiculous claims. "Ready to be the CNO!" is absurd unless you happen to be a flag officer.

Closing statements are along the same lines. Don't waste space summarizing your previous statements. State why you deserve an MP or EP in one-two sentences.

8. Now, with everything typed up in a word document, run spell check. Then, open Navfit98a.

- Fill out your name, rank, etc. in block 1-5.
- Fill out the UIC and station information.
- Fill out your COs information (now it's helpful to have that previous FITREP printed).

- Block 28 is controlled by the command. Contact your YN or XO to find out what they want for the block 28. Try to get all major exercises (VALIANT SHIELD, INTERNAL LOOK, etc.) listed here, plus any command awards and certifications.

- For Block 29, put your primary duty in the box. The list "PRI:" and every primary job you did, with a dash and the number of months you did them. For example: PRI: Electrical Officer-6, Reactor Controls Assistant-2. Then, do something similar for collateral (COLL), watches (WATCH), and secondary duties (SEC). If you took significant leave, list it here (it helps explain a lack of accomplishments).

- Ensure Block 30/31 are filled out. If your command sucks at performing midterm counselings...make it a point to ask for one.

- Don't bother with grades. Honestly, they don't mean anything. Let the group doing the FITREPs fill them in. The only pieces that matter are whether you are above the CO's reporting average and the Summary Group average. See: http://www-personal.umich.edu/%7Ehaagr/Navy_Evaluations_NAVSEA.ppt

- Put something useful in Block 40. I specifically won't sign a FITREP if my Block 40 is changed (some YNs try to do this...be warned!). It should be realistic. For example, an ENS or LTJG could have PG SCHOOL listed, but LCDR OIC doesn't make any sense. Don't forget special programs like Executive Fellowship, Pol-Mil degree, or White House Fellow.

- Fill in block 41. With all your pre-work, it should be merely a formatting challenge at this point. I recommend one space between your opening statement and one space before your closing statement. Otherwise, you want to minimize the amount of white space.

Hopefully this helps minimize the pain of filling out a FITREP. Some other comments:

- You can whine about writing your own FITREP...and guess what? No one is going to do it for you. Use it as an opportunity to show your CoC what you did while they weren't watching.

- FITREPs are useful for more than just boards. You send FITREPs to get joint discretionary credit (http://www.public.navy.mil/BUPERS-NPC/OFFICER/DETAILING/JOINTOFFICER/Pages/JQSE-JDADiscretionaryPoints.aspx), get reviewed for special programs, and when you leave the Navy, get hired for a civilian job. Keep that in mind while filling them out.

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