The Navy has announced the automation of enlisted advancement worksheets, the first step for promotion-eligible sailors before an exam.
The automation, according to an administrative message signed Thursday by the Navy's personnel boss, Vice Adm. Robert Burke, scraps the paper signature on the worksheet that confirmed a sailor's time in rate, awards, education and performance mark averages from previous exams -- all of which factored into a sailor's final multiple score after completing the rating test.
The elimination of the paper forms is "designed to streamline our advancement worksheet processes, and enable sailors to focus on studying their advancement exam reference material," Chief of Naval Personnel spokesman Lt. Rick Moore said in an email on Friday. "We constantly review our advancement exam processes to determine ways to increase efficiencies and reduce administrative burden for our sailors, Educational Services Officers and command leadership."
The new electronic form will pull information from sailors' personalized online service records and populate all the required information from the Navy Standard Integrated Personnel System (NSIPS).
"Sailors will have the ability to view enlisted advancement worksheets several months prior to exam administration, providing additional time for validation and corrections (if needed)," the Thursday message said.
The change also eliminates the requirement for manually blacking out circles on answer sheets during exams.
The paperless worksheets will be tested during a pilot phase from January to March 2019, and the Navy will "assess if capability is ready for future exam cycles" by April 1, 2019. Full implementation is planned for June 2019.
"We expect a decrease in errors within sailors' advancement and education records, as well as a decrease in the amount of time required for worksheet processing during Navy-wide Advancement Examination Cycles," Moore said. "The transition will increase worksheet transparency and availability for sailors well before advancement examinations."
Individual sailors are not off the hook for personally reviewing their records, though. They still need to log in to their personal service records to review, comment, and request corrections via their command personnel representatives. Training modules and tutorials have been posted for command use on NSIPS.
The Navy-wide Sailor 2025 modernization initiative has already seen big changes to Navy evaluations, education programs and meritorious advancements. Future plans include more streamlined personnel processes to include pay, leave, detailer interaction and rating modernizations, according to the personnel command.