Military compensation is complex, consisting of over 70 different pays and entitlements, some of which are cash payments and some of which are in-kind transfers. This study provides a baseline description of the structure of enlisted-personnel compensation. It documents which pays service members receive, how much they receive, and how compensation varies by such individual characteristics as gender, race, occupation, family composition, and Armed Forces Qualification Test score. While the largest contributor to average levels of compensation is Basic Pay, the largest contributors to differences in pay across individuals are enlistment/reenlistment bonuses and retirement benefits. The two characteristics associated with the biggest observed differences in compensation are years of service and having dependents. Compensation is significantly different statistically across other individual characteristics, but the magnitudes of the differences are relatively small. While this baseline description does not model the sources of the relationships between compensation and individual characteristics or explain why the observed patterns exist, the results can serve to identify areas in which future behavioral analysis would be especially fruitful. It will interest those involved in military compensation or military personnel management.
Table of Contents
The Components of Military Compensation
Valuing Military Compensation
Cohorts Observed for Each Year of Service
Assignment of Pays to Compensation Components
Regression Results for Bas