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PERs : All issues questions...2018-current

Navy_Pete

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SupersonicMax said:
CANFORGEN 010/17.

SCORE CONTROLS AND THE PRACTICE OF USING UNIT/FORMATION/GROUP RANKING BOARDS TO DIRECTLY INFLUENCE PER SCORING IN ANY FORM IS TO CEASE. PER SCORES ARE TO BE DERIVED BY HONEST AND PROFESSIONAL ASSESSMENT OF A MEMBER S PERFORMANCE BY THEIR SUPERVISOR AND NOT SUBJECT TO ADJUSTMENT TO MEET BOARD RANKINGS.

Through the formal review process, absolutely.  To meet a ranking established by a board?  No.

Thanks for the ref.

What I've seen is the supervisors adjusting the score in the ranking board when it was justified by their performance after some discussion, and the overall unit ranking falling out from that.  That makes sense to me.  Are they trying to prevent rankings coming down from on high, and scores being adjusted to suit?  Makes sense, but I've never seen anything other then a bottom up system (with PERMON oversight for transparency). That's when things shake out like Bloggins being hard right for PD for a few four hour, throw away online courses, when compared against someone doing some real, actual PD (for example.


Maybe things were happening differently at army/air force unit?  :dunno:

Ships are maybe a bit easier, as the MOCs normally are all contained with one department, so normally when you get to the unit rankings, the MOC ranking has been already done by the department with the supervisors arguing it out directly.  At the unit ranking, the departments will send a rep (at the supervisor level) with draft PERs and notes from everyone else, with a PERMON there to make sure the process is fair.  So for example, for PO2s, the dept chief & PO1s would figure out their comparative ranking, with the divisional officer doing the oversight. Then the PERMON would organize a time for each department to send a rep to get the overall ship rankings for PO2s, which would mean a rep from each department (ie PO1 or the Chief), using the dept list as a reference. PERMON would be there, and usually Coxn was also there to direct traffic and act as a tie breaker between depts.  But everyone would start with their list, and compare the top ranked ones that were left, until you had figured out however many were needed for that rank (based on the cutoff for mention in part 5).

Anyway, I've seen at that point someone get underscored by the supervisor and overlooked, so others would bring forward things they were aware of that should have been considered for the PER rankings.  Was more typical in the LS ranking, where there was a huge pool, but that was were interdepartmental things (like duty watch performance) got raised, and was almost universally for the benefit of the member.  Was stuff like someone forgetting to pass on something good that happened on duty, or something that had happened ages ago and forgotten about, so was more of an honest mistake (vice incompetence or whatever). Did see in one case where it was a blatant screw job, which got fixed at that point, and also ended up resulting in the supervisor/divO dropping down in their assessment.

Personal experience may vary I guess, but at the unit level I think it makes sense to adjust the scores if needed to make sure the sections/departments are consistent, but that's why PERMON is involved.

Group/formation is totally different though; those should have gone through the full PERMON and CO review.  The scores and narrative should be basically locked, with the only thing changing at that point is the section 6 narrative (based on the ranking). The rule makes sense at that point, but seems like an unnecessary over-reach, rather then taking action to sort out individual units that are foxed.
 

MJP

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Navy_Pete said:
Thanks for the ref.

What I've seen is the supervisors adjusting the score in the ranking board when it was justified by their performance after some discussion, and the overall unit ranking falling out from that.  That makes sense to me.  Are they trying to prevent rankings coming down from on high, and scores being adjusted to suit?  Makes sense, but I've never seen anything other then a bottom up system (with PERMON oversight for transparency). That's when things shake out like Bloggins being hard right for PD for a few four hour, throw away online courses, when compared against someone doing some real, actual PD (for example.


Maybe things were happening differently at army/air force unit?  :dunno:

Ships are maybe a bit easier, as the MOCs normally are all contained with one department, so normally when you get to the unit rankings, the MOC ranking has been already done by the department with the supervisors arguing it out directly.  At the unit ranking, the departments will send a rep (at the supervisor level) with draft PERs and notes from everyone else, with a PERMON there to make sure the process is fair.  So for example, for PO2s, the dept chief & PO1s would figure out their comparative ranking, with the divisional officer doing the oversight. Then the PERMON would organize a time for each department to send a rep to get the overall ship rankings for PO2s, which would mean a rep from each department (ie PO1 or the Chief), using the dept list as a reference. PERMON would be there, and usually Coxn was also there to direct traffic and act as a tie breaker between depts.  But everyone would start with their list, and compare the top ranked ones that were left, until you had figured out however many were needed for that rank (based on the cutoff for mention in part 5).

Anyway, I've seen at that point someone get underscored by the supervisor and overlooked, so others would bring forward things they were aware of that should have been considered for the PER rankings.  Was more typical in the LS ranking, where there was a huge pool, but that was were interdepartmental things (like duty watch performance) got raised, and was almost universally for the benefit of the member.  Was stuff like someone forgetting to pass on something good that happened on duty, or something that had happened ages ago and forgotten about, so was more of an honest mistake (vice incompetence or whatever). Did see in one case where it was a blatant screw job, which got fixed at that point, and also ended up resulting in the supervisor/divO dropping down in their assessment.

Personal experience may vary I guess, but at the unit level I think it makes sense to adjust the scores if needed to make sure the sections/departments are consistent, but that's why PERMON is involved.

Group/formation is totally different though; those should have gone through the full PERMON and CO review.  The scores and narrative should be basically locked, with the only thing changing at that point is the section 6 narrative (based on the ranking). The rule makes sense at that point, but seems like an unnecessary over-reach, rather then taking action to sort out individual units that are foxed.

This also is my general experience across a number of army units, slight nuances but nothing spectacular at the unit level. The bottom up drive with command oversight to ensure scores are not over or under-inflated seems to work well. 


 

SupersonicMax

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My unit is pretty good at respecting individual supervisor’s score dots. CoC, upon review, may ask either a justification or a score change during the review process but scores don’t really change at the board.  I asked all my supervisors to talk amongst themselves before a board to get feedback on their subs.  This avoids the board influencing the dot scores.
 

Infanteer

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Brihard said:
It makes sense to me. Still plenty of dinosaurs around, including on merit boards. If a PER reading 'MCpl Bloggins' instead of 'she' results in MCpl Bloggins getting more of a fair shake at courses and promitions because you don't get someone consciously or unconsciously pushing down females' PERs, I'm good with it.

I'm going to challenge you on this one, and offer that if you've sat on a promotion board, you'd know this isn't true.

I'll use a combat arms board from Sgt to CWO as an example.  The board has 1x Col, 1x CWO, and 3x Maj.  One of the Maj is non-affiliated with the occupation being boarded.  No matter if one person is a "dinosaur" and says "I'm not giving this person points/I'm giving this person bonus points because its a he/she", in the end, all five members have to be within a variance of 5 of 100 points.  Every file is discussed, and an abnormally high or low score needs to be justified.  Having sat on two boards, my experience is that most files end up within 5 points right off the bat, which implies that unless all five members have some sort of bias, then the boarding process is pretty fair.

Also, to add, this is a small military, and the fact that selection boards are done within the occupation, by the occupation, means that most members will know many of the members being boarded, so the claim to creating anonymity by eliminating a pronoun is specious at best.

I'll restate my argument that anyone who thinks this policy will eliminate gender bias on promotion boards either (a) has never actually sat on a board or (b) is being dishonest for the sake of the cause du jour.
 

brihard

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Infanteer said:
I'm going to challenge you on this one, and offer that if you've sat on a promotion board, you'd know this isn't true.

I'll use a combat arms board from Sgt to CWO as an example.  The board has 1x Col, 1x CWO, and 3x Maj.  One of the Maj is non-affiliated with the occupation being boarded.  No matter if one person is a "dinosaur" and says "I'm not giving this person points/I'm giving this person bonus points because its a he/she", in the end, all five members have to be within a variance of 5 of 100 points.  Every file is discussed, and an abnormally high or low score needs to be justified.  Having sat on two boards, my experience is that most files end up within 5 points right off the bat, which implies that unless all five members have some sort of bias, then the boarding process is pretty fair.

Also, to add, this is a small military, and the fact that selection boards are done within the occupation, by the occupation, means that most members will know many of the members being boarded, so the claim to creating anonymity by eliminating a pronoun is specious at best.

I'll restate my argument that anyone who thinks this policy will eliminate gender bias on promotion boards either (a) has never actually sat on a board or (b) is being dishonest for the sake of the cause du jour.

I'm repeating something I had read elsewhere- your reply is considerably more detailed and credible, so I'll defer to that, with a general apology for any aspersions that I may have inadvertantly cast. Thanks for correcting my bearing on this one.
 

ballz

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When I read the CANFORGEN, I didn't get the impression that this was at all aimed at eliminating gender bias in the PER process... I read it as an attempt to ensure no one was accidentally (or I suppose, purposefully) "mis-gendered" the institution by referring to them as a his or her. Would not be surprised to see this applied more widely to other forms of communication.
 

Infanteer

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ballz said:
When I read the CANFORGEN, I didn't get the impression that this was at all aimed at eliminating gender bias in the PER process... I read it as an attempt to ensure no one was accidentally (or I suppose, purposefully) "mis-gendered" the institution by referring to them as a his or her. Would not be surprised to see this applied more widely to other forms of communication.

Considering the PER is written by a direct supervisor, who knows a persons preference, I'm not sure I believe that was the intent.  The statement of "prohibited grounds of discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act" led me to believe bias was a rationale for the policy. 
 

Good2Golf

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Infanteer said:
Also, to add, this is a small military, and the fact that selection boards are done within the occupation, by the occupation, means that most members will know many of the members being boarded, so the claim to creating anonymity by eliminating a pronoun is specious at best.

:nod:

For many occupations, you’d likely have to remove the last name or people would be ‘able to figure out the gender’...

Although no longer serving, I have the same sense as Infanteer, that this is more about an organization establishing an action stamp to historically claim/justify/defend that it was taking all action possible to remove any element of gender bias.  It is likely that the system had (and will likely continue to have) more personalized bias through other factors, principally I believe, such as confirmation (good ole boys) bias and halo (or horns) bias, than gender bias.  In my experience (I sat on approximately 40-50 boards in my career, about half and half NCM and officer), I believe that there was more confirmation and halo bias than gender bias over the years, but that’s not to say that an organization shouldn’t aim to reduce/eliminate ALL types of assessment bias in its personnel assessment system. I just think this more recent focus of de-genderization places a disproportionate emphasis on a factor that is less prevalent than others.  To some degree the prior policy to prohibit unit-level merit boards should, on the surface, reduce the ability of higher levels of unit organization influence/change supervisor assessments of subordinates, but that is not necessarily the panacea that some (many?) might think as it is based significantly on the assumption that supervisors in a unit are essentially homogeneously consistent and standardized in their assessments of their respective subordinates.  I personally see value in unit and section level merit review and discussion of policies and expectations of bias minimization, but best prior to supervisors’ submissions of finalized PERs.  Adjustments of dots and particularly re-writing of narratives to match according to fit what 2-3 levels up in a unit ‘want to see’ (signs of existential confirmation/halo biases) is what shouldn’t be happening.

:2c:

Regards
G2G
 

dapaterson

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Good2Golf said:
Adjustments of dots and particularly re-writing is narratives to match according to fit what 2-3 levels up in a unit ‘want to see’ (signs of existential confirmation/halo biases) is what shouldn’t be happening.

This would be the wrong place to post a list of names, right?
 

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A big part of the stupidity would just go away if people stopped trying to use the PER boards as "succession planning" boards at the same time and therefore game the system to guarantee a promotion for the succession planned pers.

VCDS was the absolute worst back in the day prior to the CANFORGEN directing that higher level boards were to no longer direct scores. They used to publish a letter that dictated how many Mastered and Outstanding dots the top people in the Group could have; essentially making it impossible for a unit that didn't have someone in the top 3 to have a pure "MOI". They also used to include a cute line that stated that notwithstanding the rankings of the current year, nobody that was ranked would get a lower PER than the year prior...
 

ballz

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Infanteer said:
The statement of "prohibited grounds of discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act" led me to believe bias was a rationale for the policy.

The recent (past 4-5 years) and hottest/most current controversial topic regarding what is or is not discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act is the use of gender-specific pronouns / use of gender-neutral pronouns, whether someone ought to have the right to be called by whatever pronouns they choose, whether someone should be forced to use those pronouns, etc.

It also states at the beginning that this is about "A RECENT CAF CULTURAL AND NORMATIVE SHIFT TO PROMOTE GENDER DIVERSITY AND ASSOCIATED INCLUSIVENESS" etc.

This policy actually strikes a balance between forcing someone to use language that they don't agree with (30+ gender pronouns) which likely would have led to some issues for the CAF/government of Canada and not misgendering someone by using pronouns they don't identify with.

Infanteer said:
Considering the PER is written by a direct supervisor, who knows a persons preference, I'm not sure I believe that was the intent.

Not to spur up another argument about the CAF's level of institutional competence but "this isn't going to make a lick of difference" applies to a lot of policy, and is just as applicable to the idea that this might prevent bias in the meriting system. I don't think the goal here is to actually make a difference, just an easy tick in the box for "promoting gender diversity and associated inclusiveness" and

Infanteer said:
being dishonest for the sake of the cause du jour.
 

Infanteer

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ballz said:
I don't think the goal here is to actually make a difference, just an easy tick in the box for "promoting gender diversity and associated inclusiveness"

Yep.  In the end, it takes 30 second off my life, and I'm sure the pendulum will swing the other way in a few years, so I'm over it now....
 

Navy_Pete

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I don't get this one either; who has space for a pronoun of any kind?  Even he/she takes up precious characters in the boxes, and it's not like you are referring to someone else in the PER.

If I had to use something, my default would be 'they', but only because I didn't have room for the rank/name, and he/she is too informal.  But normally am looking to cut as many characters as possible, so grammar rules go out the window to get the point across, and pronouns are redundant in this case. The only time you have a narrative is when you are recommending someone for promotion, and if you have space left in the tiny box, you probably aren't helping the cause.

It's a change that looks good on paper but makes no material difference, so not going to lose any sleep over it, but in the grand scheme of things, still disappointed this is what some of the big giant heads are spending their time on.  Getting that drafted, reviewed and approved ate up staff time that could have been better used towards all kinds of things, but I guess that's my fundamental issue with the gaiters and buttons crowd as well.

This will have zero impact on any kind of gender bias, and was probably based on absolutely zero evidence that there is a gender bias in promotion boards. If it exists, it's way down the line from the board, and my experience is the same as Infanteers.  I was the non-trade related token member on a board, and it was pretty straight forward, based on whatever was written and on the file.  If I cared, it would have been easy enough to figure out the gender on each file (even if it's not on the MPRR, the full name is usually a pretty good indicator), but the only disagreement over a score was due to a poorly written PER, and had about enough time on each file to quickly read the PERs and come up with a score, not dig through a file and figure out someone's life story. If someone with no skin in the game that doesn't know anyone comes to the same result as people in the trade, I think that's a good indication that the actual promotion board process works as intended, and is largely based on the file in front of them.

Choice postings, high profile job management, and all the other things that go into creating a strong promotion file are where any bias/politics/other BS would take place, not at the promotion boards. I think fundamentally figuring out how to get the right people into the right place makes sense, as does managing your talent, but as long as it happens in a weird, backroom deals kind of way it will continue to be open to questions about it's perceived fairness.
 

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Those were some great points Pete/Infanteer/ballz.

I guess I was just frustrated at the lack of meaning and purpose with my work. Sometimes it feels like we do not have enough time and resources to accomplish our front line jobs yet we gorge ourselves on feel good but accomplish little projects like this.

If it were up to me, I would explore moving away from absolute fairness and move towards managers/leaders having the freedom to select the right person for the right position (and having the unencumbered power to demote if the selection turns out to be a mistake). It seems like a lot of the problems regarding unit boards are a consequence of being unable to exercise this aspect of management/leadership.

Edit: What if we viewed filling positions as trying to solve a specific problem that requires specific traits or experiences? Our current process does not allow us to benefit from the unique qualities of specific individuals since the merit list only provides a generic ranking. e.g. trying to align an analytical individual to an analytical career as a staff officer

If the counterpoint is that these differences do not matter for low ranks where jobs are mainly interchangeable, then what value are we getting out of our elaborate PER/merit board process for the majority of our members? We spend dozens if not hundred of hours in each unit writing PERs in a specific way to produce exceedingly little actual results (since we bypass this process through back channels to pick who gets the best opportunities, etc.).
 

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Brihard said:
Indeed. But those objectives quickly contradict each other. If the unit is allowed to do their ranking, BUT ranking cannot contradict the dot count, something's gotta give.

Ugh. No they don't, and no they don't! This was my biggest gripe for 3 years as PERMON and I finally created a culture within the unit that followed the spirit and direction of CFPAS.

The section 5 rankings and the section 6 rankings are completely separate, and the they do not need to align, nor do they need to align with any sort of calculated 'overall per score" that the unit may have come up with.
Thr section 5 rankings should not be determined at a ranking board; rather, they should be determined within the section/subsection itself based on the scores on the PER (which are in turn the subjective assessment of the supervisor).
The section 6 unit rankings are not objective (although please, use objective thought and empirical evidence as much as possible when coming up with your rankings); rather, the section 6 unit rankings represent the subjective opinion of the CO on who is the best.
The actual and final decision on unit rankings rests with the CO, no one else. Not the Coxn, RSM, lower deck lawfirm, or pepperoni club.
The ranking boards do not actually come up with the final, official determination of unit rankings. Rather all the ranking board really does is come up with a recommended ranking list that is the  provided to the CO who then yays, nays, or amends it.
 

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Navy_Pete said:
I don't get this one either; who has space for a pronoun of any kind?  Even he/she takes up precious characters in the boxes, and it's not like you are referring to someone else in the PER.

If I had to use something, my default would be 'they', but only because I didn't have room for the rank/name, and he/she is too informal.  But normally am looking to cut as many characters as possible, so grammar rules go out the window to get the point across, and pronouns are redundant in this case. The only time you have a narrative is when you are recommending someone for promotion, and if you have space left in the tiny box, you probably aren't helping the cause.

It's a change that looks good on paper but makes no material difference, so not going to lose any sleep over it, but in the grand scheme of things, still disappointed this is what some of the big giant heads are spending their time on.  Getting that drafted, reviewed and approved ate up staff time that could have been better used towards all kinds of things, but I guess that's my fundamental issue with the gaiters and buttons crowd as well.

This will have zero impact on any kind of gender bias, and was probably based on absolutely zero evidence that there is a gender bias in promotion boards. If it exists, it's way down the line from the board, and my experience is the same as Infanteers.  I was the non-trade related token member on a board, and it was pretty straight forward, based on whatever was written and on the file.  If I cared, it would have been easy enough to figure out the gender on each file (even if it's not on the MPRR, the full name is usually a pretty good indicator), but the only disagreement over a score was due to a poorly written PER, and had about enough time on each file to quickly read the PERs and come up with a score, not dig through a file and figure out someone's life story. If someone with no skin in the game that doesn't know anyone comes to the same result as people in the trade, I think that's a good indication that the actual promotion board process works as intended, and is largely based on the file in front of them.

Choice postings, high profile job management, and all the other things that go into creating a strong promotion file are where any bias/politics/other BS would take place, not at the promotion boards. I think fundamentally figuring out how to get the right people into the right place makes sense, as does managing your talent, but as long as it happens in a weird, backroom deals kind of way it will continue to be open to questions about it's perceived fairness.


This was my complaint as well. Here I am shortening words that have no business being shortened to get one more point in but I need to seek out their name and rank in full rather than use their pronoun? I don't have room for that. People who have done national boards feel free to chime in here but I would be surprised if they spend more than a minute on each file. They don't have time to be biased. Any bias is going to come at the unit level and they will already know who that person is anyway.

As for the trans issue, I have written PER/PDRs for a trans person and I just used her preferred pronoun. It was simple but she used regular pronouns none of this xe bullshit. Again, most of the issues a trans person will have will come at the unit level and will have its effect long before a PER hits the board. In the very minute chance that such a person ran into a whole bigoted board that decided to ignore the PER due to gender identity, we have a system in place to deal with that already.
 

Navy_Pete

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Lumber said:
Ugh. No they don't, and no they don't! This was my biggest gripe for 3 years as PERMON and I finally created a culture within the unit that followed the spirit and direction of CFPAS.

The section 5 rankings and the section 6 rankings are completely separate, and the they do not need to align, nor do they need to align with any sort of calculated 'overall per score" that the unit may have come up with.
Thr section 5 rankings should not be determined at a ranking board; rather, they should be determined within the section/subsection itself based on the scores on the PER (which are in turn the subjective assessment of the supervisor).
The section 6 unit rankings are not objective (although please, use objective thought and empirical evidence as much as possible when coming up with your rankings); rather, the section 6 unit rankings represent the subjective opinion of the CO on who is the best.
The actual and final decision on unit rankings rests with the CO, no one else. Not the Coxn, RSM, lower deck lawfirm, or pepperoni club.
The ranking boards do not actually come up with the final, official determination of unit rankings. Rather all the ranking board really does is come up with a recommended ranking list that is the  provided to the CO who then yays, nays, or amends it.

Part of the PERMON job is to makes sure the ranking list and scores that go up to the CO is consistent and logical.  I agree section 5 and 6 rankings are independent (ie No 1 guy in an MOC in that unit can still be in the middle third and not ranked at the unit level), but if the scores of No 5 guy at the unit level are higher then the 1-4 PERs, that should be looked at pretty hard to make sure the process worked properly and the PER scores and unit ranking was done correctly. Similarly, no 2 file at the MOC/rank should be lower down the unit ranking then the no 1 file. It should be objective enough that a higher dot score should be a higher unit ranking; it's when you have the same overall scores when it becomes subjective (but generally when things like a higher leadership score comes into play).

If the CO catches those things after PERMON, then things will probably go badly for them.

I can't really see any normal situation where you would have someone with a higher overall score ranked lower at a unit level and not have some questions. If so, that's something that should be specifically looked at and approved by the CO, but would need a pretty good reason to inflate the score on that file.
 

Good2Golf

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Tcm621 said:
This was my complaint as well. Here I am shortening words that have no business being shortened to get one more point in but I need to seek out their name and rank in full rather than use their pronoun? I don't have room for that. People who have done national boards feel free to chime in here but I would be surprised if they spend more than a minute on each file. They don't have time to be biased. Any bias is going to come at the unit level and they will already know who that person is anyway.

^ this. :nod:

Tcm, you hit the nail on the head...45 seconds to a minute. It doesn’t seem like much time, but when you and the other board members get in the groove, it almost seems like a long time. 

Regards
G2G
 

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Navy_Pete said:
Part of the PERMON job is to makes sure the ranking list and scores that go up to the CO is consistent and logical.  I agree section 5 and 6 rankings are independent (ie No 1 guy in an MOC in that unit can still be in the middle third and not ranked at the unit level), but if the scores of No 5 guy at the unit level are higher then the 1-4 PERs, that should be looked at pretty hard to make sure the process worked properly and the PER scores and unit ranking was done correctly. Similarly, no 2 file at the MOC/rank should be lower down the unit ranking then the no 1 file. It should be objective enough that a higher dot score should be a higher unit ranking; it's when you have the same overall scores when it becomes subjective (but generally when things like a higher leadership score comes into play).

If the CO catches those things after PERMON, then things will probably go badly for them.

I can't really see any normal situation where you would have someone with a higher overall score ranked lower at a unit level and not have some questions. If so, that's something that should be specifically looked at and approved by the CO, but would need a pretty good reason to inflate the score on that file.

You can have a new guy in a position with a lot of potential but that hasn’t been performing to its potential yet rank above someone that is extremely effective in its current rank in section 5 but below in section 6.  It should be rare but I have seen this happen once. 
 

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SupersonicMax said:
You can have a new guy in a position with a lot of potential but that hasn’t been performing to its potential yet rank above someone that is extremely effective in its current rank in section 5 but below in section 6.  It should be rare but I have seen this happen once.

Do you mean in separate MOCs?

Lots of possible scenarios for exceptions, but generally speaking, I think if someone ranks above someone else at the unit ranking but with lower scores, that needs to be a serious discussion and signed off by the CO.  Also, things like age, time left in career, etc aren't supposed to be considered when you are doing PERs, so a young up and comer that may do great things in the future shouldn't be ranked above an older, more experienced individual just because they may have more potential (unless they score the same on actual job performance). That's were recommendations for high profile positions or career coursing matter, but you shouldn't be trying to do succession management in the PERs. Normally PERs going past unit level for formation/group ranking are nearly hard right, so dot ranking matter less then narrative and draft recommendation, but can't really imagine where direction would come down to adjust a score from a formation ranking.

For the promotion board I was sitting in on, don't think the unit/formation ranking really made a difference as it was competitive enough that everyone was in the same ballpark for PER scores, so things like language profile, breadth of experience etc made a big difference. Probably varies from board to board, and how many are being promoted vice the pool size, as well as trade specific scoring criteria for the next rank, but was mostly mechanical based on the points, with some discussion around the cutoff for the files that were close in score. Heard from wingers doing other boards that others were so close that they had to come through most of the files in detail and take a lot of time to discuss it, with others having an obvious threshold so it was pretty easy.
 
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