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Personnel Specialist

Personnel Specialist 2nd Class Cameron Green creates a new common access card aboard the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower.

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As a Personnel Specialist (PS), you’ll serve as a trusted source of information for your fellow Sailors as they advance their careers. Job responsibilities include:

  • Providing counseling related to Navy occupations, opportunities for general education and job training, promotion, rights and benefits
  • Interviewing personnel for assignment recommendations
  • Assisting Enlisted Sailors and their families with problems or personal hardships
  • Managing your duty station’s Career Information Program
  • Maintaining and entering data into Enlisted Service Records
  • Assisting with personnel transfers, separations and retirements
  • Serving as a cashier for the Navy and maintaining ATMs aboard ships

Work Environment

As a Navy Personnel Specialist, you may work from one of many offices located at more than 40 major Naval bases across the country. Your work will usually be performed in a clean office environment, either alone with little supervision, or with others under close supervision, depending on your assignment. You may also serve on a ship during part of your time in the Navy.

Training & Advancement

Upon completion of initial training at Recruit Training Command Great Lakes (known as Boot Camp), you’ll report for specialized training including:

Class “A” Technical School (5 weeks) in Meridian, MS, for training on personnel administration procedures.

After you complete your training, you may be assigned to ships or shore stations in the United States or overseas. Ship assignments are predominantly in Personnel, Administrative, Supply or Training Departments. Ashore they are most commonly assigned to Personnel Support Detachments.

Promotion opportunities are regularly available but competitive and based on performance.

Advanced Training

Advanced training as a Personnel Specialist may be available during later stages of your career. For those with further leadership aspirations and a college degree, Officer roles may be available, providing opportunities to lead and train others.

Post-Service Opportunities

Specialized training received and work experience gained in the course of service can lead to valuable credentialing and occupational opportunities in related fields in the civilian world, such as Human Resources.

Education Opportunities

Beyond offering access to professional credentials and certifications, Navy technical and operational training in the human resources field can translate to credit hours toward a bachelor’s or associate degree through the American Council on Education.

You may also continue your education through undergraduate degree opportunities like the Navy College Program and Tuition Assistance and the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

Qualifications & Requirements

A high-school diploma or equivalent is required to become an Enlisted Sailor and a Personnel Specialist.

Candidates for this rate should possess good writing, communication, typing, arithmetic and record-keeping skills. You should be able to perform detailed tasks, be people-oriented and enjoy providing customer service.

General qualifications may vary depending upon whether you’re currently serving, whether you've served before or whether you've never served before.

Part-Time Opportunities

There are part-time opportunities available as a Personnel Specialist.

Serving part-time as a Navy Reserve Sailor, your duties will be carried out during your scheduled drilling and training periods. During monthly drilling, Personnel Specialists in the Navy Reserve typically work at a location close to their homes.

For annual training, you may serve anywhere in the world, including locations in the U.S., at bases overseas, or in areas where humanitarian needs are great.

Take a moment to learn more about the general roles and responsibilities of Navy Reserve Sailors.

Most of what you do in the Navy Reserve is considered training. The basic Navy Reserve commitment involves training a minimum of one weekend a month (referred to as drilling) and two weeks a year (referred to as Annual Training) – or the equivalent of that.

Personnel Specialists in the Navy Reserve serve in an Enlisted role. Before receiving the ongoing professional training that comes with the job, initial training requirements must be met.

For current or former military Enlisted servicemembers, prior experience satisfies the initial Recruit Training requirement, so you will not need to go through Boot Camp again.

For those without prior military experience, you will need to meet the initial Recruit Training requirement by attending Boot Camp in Great Lakes, IL. This training course will prepare you for service in the Navy Reserve and count as your first Annual Training.