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This documented briefing addresses the questions of whether military compensation is adequate to enable the military services to meet their manpower requirements now and in the future and whether action to change military compensation is required now. Major military pay legislation was passed in 1999 and took effect in Fiscal Year 2000, so there is also a question of whether that pay action is sufficient to meet both short-term and long-term challenges in recruiting, retaining, and motivating personnel. The briefing examines how the pay of enlisted personnel compares to that of their civilian counterparts, how these comparisons have changed over time, how the FY 2000 pay actions affect the comparisons, and how recruiting and retention have fared recently. Finally, it discusses the variety of policy options that might be considered.

This study conducted within RAND's National Security Research Division.

This report is part of the RAND documented briefing series. RAND documented briefings are based on research presented to a client, sponsor, or targeted audience in briefing format. Additional information is provided in the documented briefing in the form of the written narration accompanying the briefing charts. All RAND documented briefings undergo rigorous peer review to ensure that they meet high standards for research quality and objectivity. However, they are not expected to be comprehensive and may present preliminary findings. Major research findings are published in the monograph series; supporting or preliminary research is published in the technical report series.

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