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AR 623-3 NCO Counseling Requirements

NCO Counseling and NCOER preparation information as dictated by Army regulations AR-623-3 and DA PAM 623-3

The regulatory requirements of AR 623-3 and DA PAM 623-3 form the foundation on which all NCO counseling must securely rest. Below I have outlined the most salient NCO counseling requirements as dictated by Army regulation. I encourage all leaders to become familiar with and adhere to these requirements. Remember to only use the information that I provide as a guide; Army regulation in conjunction with unit and/or local policy shape the final authority.

  • Face-to-face performance counseling is mandatory for all noncommissioned officers.
  • DA Form 2166-8-1 (NCO Counseling Checklist/Record) along with a working copy of the NCOER (DA Form 2166-8) is mandatory for all NCOs, CPL through CSM. The purpose of the checklist is to improve performance counseling by providing structure and discipline to the process.
  • Initial counseling will be accomplished within 30 days of the rating period. The primary focus of initial counseling is on communicating performance standards to the rated NCO. Specifically, the rater shows the rated NCO the rating chain and complete duty description, discusses the meaning of the values and responsibilities contained on the NCOER and explains the standards for success.
  • Later counseling sessions will be conducted at least quarterly. The primary focus on later counseling sessions is on telling the rated NCO how well he or she is doing. Specifically, the rater updates the duty description, and based on observed action and demonstrated behavior, discusses what was done well and what could be done better. The guide for this discussion is the success standards established in the previous counseling session.
  • The DA Form 2166-8-1 will be maintained for each rated NCO until after the NCOER for that period has been approved and submitted to USAEREC. For corporals, who do not receive a record NCOER, the rater will maintain the checklist for one year.
  • Several items have been identified as Army-wide areas of special interest. When applicable, the rater should include in the counseling session these special interest items:
    • (1) Civilian position management (AR 690-500)
    • (2) Internal control system (AR 11-2)
    • (3) Audits (AR 36-2)
    • (4) Safety (AR 385-10)
    • (5) Contracting and acquisition (DODD 500.52-M)
    • (6) Information Security Program (380-19)
    • (7) Property accountability-unit (supply update handbook)
    • (8) Peronnel management responsibility for Army civilian employees (AR 10-20)
  • Rating officials will consider and use FM 22-100 with the appropriate NCO values and responsibilities when conducting counseling sessions

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