The Navy Rate
In the Navy, rates identify Sailors occupationally by pay grades E-1 through E-9 and they reflect levels of aptitude, training, experience, knowledge, skill, and responsibility. Enlisted rates are divided into three groups: general rates (E-1 through E-3 apprenticeships), Petty Officers (E-4 through E-6), and Chief Petty Officers (E-7 through E-9).
General rates are apprenticeships assigned to personnel at pay grades E-1 through E-3 to indicate their eligibility for entry into various ratings. These apprenticeships are: Airman (AN), Fireman (FN), and Seaman (SN).
- Non-designated strikers are personnel in pay grades E-1 through E-3 who are not yet designated to enter a specific rating.
- Designated strikers are personnel in pay grades E-1 through E-3 who are identified as apprentices for a specific rating. Striker designation identifies the rating in which an apprentice has significant skills as a result of on-the-job experience or formal classroom training, and indicates basic occupational skills on a par with the minimum skills for pay grade E-4 in the rating for which identified. A rating abbreviation is added to an apprentice's general rate abbreviation to indicate the rating for which the individual is designated (e.g., a SN who demonstrates significant skills in the Information System Technicians (IT) rating would be designated by the rating abbreviation, ITSN).
- Per BUPERSINST 1430.16, Advancement to the next higher pay grade (to E-2 or E-3) is automatic -- no local action must be taken. Qualified candidates who complete service requirement of 9 months (Time in Rate from E-1 to E-2, and E-2 to E-3) between the 1st and 16th of the month will be advanced on the 16th day of that month; candidates who complete service requirement of 9 months on the 17th through the end of a month will be advanced on the 16th day of the following month.
Petty Officers (Third Class Petty Officer [PO3 -- E-4]; Second Class Petty Officer [PO2 -- E-5]; and First Class Petty Officer [PO1 -- E-6]) are the technicians and work managers within Navy ratings who possess increasing degrees of skill responsibility and authority as they advance in pay grade. Petty officers are capable of accomplishing tasks normal to their rating and pay grade and they provide the "hands on" skills required to maintain, repair, and operate systems and subsystems.
- For advancement to E-4, the member must have a minimum of 6 months Time in Rate (TIR) and an E-3. For advancement to E-5, member must have 12 months TIR as an E-4. For advancement to E-6, member must have a minimum of 36 months TIR as an E-5. The TIR requirement for advancement to E-6 can be waived for up to one year for those with demonstrated superior performance.
The Chief Petty Officer (CPO) (E-7) is the technical authority, expert, and supervisor within a rating. The CPO is capable of accomplishing all tasks normal to a rating using technical supervision, instruction, and training of lower rated personnel.
- For advancement to E-7, member must have a minimum of 36 months TIR as an E-6. The TIR requirement for advancement to E-7 can be waived for up to one year for those with demonstrated superior performance.
The Senior Chief Petty Officer (SCPO) (E-8) is the senior technical supervisor within a rating or occupational field with primary responsibilities for supervising and training enlisted personnel oriented to system and subsystem maintenance, repair, and operation. Based on wide ranging experience and specialized training, the SCPO provides the command with a higher level of technical and managerial expertise than is expected at the E-7 level.
- For advancement to E-8, member must have a minimum of 36 months TIR as an E-7.
The Master Chief Petty Officer (MCPO) (E-9) is the senior enlisted petty officer in the United States Navy. As such, the MCPO is vested with special command trust and confidence extending to administrative and managerial functions involving enlisted personnel. Based upon experience, proven performance, and technical knowledge necessary for advancement to the grade of MCPO, individuals of that rate within a command hold the senior enlisted positions and contribute to forming as well as implementing policy within their occupational field or across the full Navy rating spectrum.
- For advancement to E-9, member must have a minimum of 36 months TIR as an E-8.
Military Enlisted Pay-Grade and Ranks Comparison Chart
|Enlisted Ranks and Pay grades|
|E-9||Master Chief Petty Officer||SGT Major|
Master Gunnery SGT
Command SGT Major
|Chief Master SGT|
|E-8||Senior Chief Petty Officer||1st SGT|
|Senior Master SGT|
|E-7||Chief Petty Officer||Gunnery SGT||SGT 1st Class||Master SGT|
|E-6||1st Class Petty Officer||Staff SGT||Staff SGT||Technical SGT|
|E-5||2nd Class Petty Officer||Sergeant||Sergeant||Staff SGT|
|E-4||3rd Class Petty Officer||Corporal||Corporal|
|Private First Class||Airman First Class|