Military Compensation

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Developing and offering the appropriate military compensation packages—including wages, health care, reenlistment bonuses, retirement, leave, dependent benefits, and survivor benefits—is necessary to attract and retain active duty and reserve personnel with essential skills. RAND has conducted extensive research to advise policymakers on developing compensation options to attract and retain a military workforce capable of meeting a nation's strategic goals.

  • Pilots from the 388th Fighter Wing's 4th Fighter Squadron participating in Red Flag 19-1 at Nellis AFB, Nevada, January 31, 2019, photo by R. Nial Bradshaw/U.S. Air Force

    Report

    Is It More Cost-Effective to Retain Pilots or Train New Ones?

    Mar 27, 2019

    Instead of relying on retaining its current pilots, the U.S. Air Force could hypothetically find and train new ones. But expanding the pilot training pipeline is costly. What is the best way for the Air Force to allocate its resources and sustain its number of pilots?

  • Silhouettes of soldiers during Military Mission at dusk, photo by guvendemir/Getty Images

    Report

    Setting the Level and Annual Adjustment of Military Pay

    Dec 17, 2020

    Every four years, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) commissions a review of the military compensation system. How has military pay compared with civilian pay since the 1990s?

Explore Military Compensation

  • Report

    Report

    The Design, Administration, and Evaluation of the 1978 Selected Reserve Reenlistment Bonus Test

    Describes the results of a national experiment designed to study factors that influence reenlistment decisions of Army Reserve and National Guard personnel. Some 15,300 reservists making reenlistment decisions in 1978 participated in the experiment.

    Jul 1, 1982

  • Report

    Report

    The President's Commission on Military Compensation: A Review

    This Commission, headed by Charles Zwick, was created in response to concerns about military costs, effectiveness, equity and morale, and the basic philosophy for setting military compensation.

    Jan 1, 1978

  • People

    People

    Beth J. Asch

    Senior Economist; Professor of Policy Analysis, Pardee RAND Graduate School
    Education Ph.D. and M.A. in economics, University of Chicago; B.A. in economics, University of California, Los Angeles

  • People

    People

    James Hosek

    Adjunct Economist; Professor, Pardee RAND Graduate School
    Education Ph.D. and M.A. in economics, University of Chicago; B.A. in English, Cornell University

  • People

    People

    Molly F. McIntosh

    Director, Forces and Resources Policy Center; Senior Economist
    Education Ph.D. in economics, Princeton University; M.A. in economics, Princeton University; B.A. in economics, UC Berkeley

  • People

    People

    Jennie W. Wenger

    Director, Economics, Sociology, and Statistics Department; Senior Economist
    Education Ph.D. in economics, University of North Carolina