CR's - Does The Unit Make A Difference?

IS Ski Geek

War Hero
Just been having a debate with some people at work and would like to know what people's views are on CR's -

Does the person's whose signature on the end make a difference.

Does the unit with which the person is serving make a differnence.

Surely a CR should be judged on the merits of the person who is reported on and not the officer who is writing it or wether they supposedly belong to a sleepy hollow unit.

If the person is reported on for doing his job then surely if the unit is not high profile it should not make a difference as the posts have to be filled by somebody.

Does anybody think something like this has happened to them - do you think that its just bollox that people make up because they didn't come of the board.

Whats your view - Let us know.
Well lets begin.  A few days ago a warrant officer was commenting how a certain individual was definitely coming of the board from 1 Div as he had wrote his CR.

The topic of conversation was that 16 was still stigmatized as an RCZ posting basicaly a slipper city comcen post and that ARMOUR was the be all and end all.   Also the CO's that get posted to 1 Div are going places so their CR's hold more weight.  The ammount of times i have heard this is unbeleivable but is there an element of truth here.  

This is not a jibe at 1 Div but there are bigger and better IS op units out there and i hope somone from records will read this and comment as i think it needs to be addressed at a higher level to bring some sort of order to the speculation being made.  

I have been advised on numerous occasions about being at 16 does nothing for my carear prospect's.  

Again this is all speculation but just watch the board results and the proof is in the pudding.

IS Ski Geek

War Hero
mmmm there seems to be an element of truth there. I have spoken to someone recently that did not come of the board. He was informed that his points were lower thtn last year even though he was in a specialist job and his CR was better than the previous unit. He was then told that if it had come from somewhere such as 16 or 7 then a lot more notice would be taken as these were counted as main stream units. to me this should not matter as he was working on important/difficult/new and maybe not important to the british army but to others - he was still carrying out his job and beyond - seems strange. The view I got was that if you were not working in a mainstream IS enviroment then it was a waste of time as your CR's were not worth the same regardless of how good a job you do. Seems very strange but highly believable.
I don't know if the unit makes a difference.  Obviously it shouldn't because if you are doing a great job, it shouldn't matter where you are doing it.  However, I suspect that it does make a difference in a lot of cases.  Just like when you have been on Ops, there is the rumour that you get looked at in a 'better light'.

What I do suspect, is that it matters WHO has written your CR.  We all know that no-one sticks to the rules when grading CRs.  I've known complete wasters who should have got Cs or Ds and the OC has been told that he can't give that grade.  Also, the majority of CRs are overgraded.  Hardly anyone gets a C yet this is the average grade.  If people don't get As or Os they think it is the end of the world.

I believe that certain COs get a reputation of overgrading and so when it comes to a board, their reports may be viewed with a little scepticism.


IS Ski Geek

War Hero
So then in a sense it should not matter what units you serve at as long as you do a good job and whatever other career enhancing things that you can do. It should stand you in good line for promotion as long as there is the vacancy's. However I do get the impression that this is not the case and have been reliably informed that going to non mainstream units such as the div's and regiments ie 7 and 16 or the bde's will mark you done slightly against someone who is serving there. Surely this can't be right...
My ten pence worth is that dependant on what board you are sitting a/b/etc..........if a member of the board has served at your unit or knows you or is even posted there it will swing a few points in your favour..........thats of course if your CR gets up to Glasgay on time !  I bet there is quite a few who haven't even seen their CR's and it ends up at records with their signature on it...............and come of the board !!!!! ???
In my opinion the unit you are posted to does have an impact - some units are busier than others.  The busier a unit, the more chances an individual has to shine over the course of a reporting period, the easier it is to make informed comments about that individuals performance.

The signature block on the report is always going to have an impact on the grading from a board as well.  If the members of a board know a reporting officer, either personally or by reputation, then that will colour their view of the report:

"If offr X says that soldier Y is worthy of a good write up, and I think that offr X is good bloke, then soldier Y is a good bloke and worthy of promotion"


"if off X say that soldier Y is worthy of a good write up, and I think that offr X is a war dodging w@nker, then soldier Y must be a w@nker as well, I'll grade him lower"

The best way to avoid this scenario is ensure that most of your report is made up of qualified facts about your performance rather than just opinion.  Thats why reports from RSSC and RSJCC carry quite a bit of weight, as they compare everyone from across the Corps under the same, or similar, conditions.
I'v read this thread with interest. Its been a worry to me since qualifying as an IS Op about the various units and what each of them is doing. I do think there is a attitude in the Corps that some units have more worthy jobs than others. I think thats arrse.

The trade was developed around deployable IS assets. If a guy is working at 3 div, is his job within the corps any less worthy that the bloke at 16 sigs? I would suggest not. Just because a bloke may be lucky enough to be in a unit that is working at the cutting edge, and getting loads of civi courses, it doesnt make him a better IS Op than the guy who is at a div and is plugging up deployed crud for a living. Records maybe need to be reminded what the trade is all about. Everybody should be positively encouraged to develop themselves within the trade, but all established IS jobs within the corps should hold equal weight.

Thats me off me soapbox!!


IS ski geek, it too about 2 nano seconds to work out who you are!!!!


War Hero
I am an officer of the Corps.

I have sat as a board member on several selection boards over the past few years.

I know from personal experience that the signature on the bottom of the report is irrelevent in the main, unless that is the only one in the report book.  This is true across all the trades.  If an individual is posted to 26blah for 6 years (as happens), their profile is weaker than for someone who has served in an armoured Bde Sig Sqn AND a regular trunk Sig Regt.  A number of reports with a varied cross section of units is generally what is required, that and the ability of an officer to string a few sentences together.  Oh, and don't bother looking at the grade, this only makes about 5% of the reports value...

If you are worried that the Divs are better for stuff to excel at, with more opportunities, then you are probably clutching at straws anyhow.  If I ever have to sit on a board again (probably will later in the year), I'll still be looking to see if the individual is capable of exploiting AND creating opportunities.

and Ski, I recon I've clocked who you are; jock perhaps?

IS Ski Geek

War Hero
However, Thankyou all for the info as it may put some people's fear to rest and also makes some things heard from other people sound like absolute bollox. Especially those that should be in the know. ah well !!! :-/
I don't usually comment on serious issues but this one got my goat.
CGS how can you defend the fact that I recently wrote a report for an oxygen thief - that bad that they weren't allowed to go to Iraq (meaning that some other poor sod was sent) but the very generous C3 that I gave them was sent back (with a bo!!ocking for me) telling me to upgrade them.
I was livid at the time, if somebody is a to$$er it they deserve a bad CR, but our Sqn 2ic doesn't like giving people less than a B3.
Does anybody elses unit have this problem?
CGS, not having a go at you, just want an Officers point of view.
And they should have got a D4, but I',m not a complete W@nker
Wob, as CGS has said, the grade isnt the important thing - if the CR is sent back asking for the grade to be upped, do it! as long as the write up is a fair and honest reflection of the soldier, your point should be made.


War Hero

I do not seek to defend the actions you describe.  My comments were directed at the selection procedure that is applied to the report itself, not the in-bks management of the soldier.  That does not form part of the formal selection process, save for the fact that the unit may well hold its own grading board and may be sensitive to the management of an individuals' expectations.  This is what a CR grade can be used for, setting the scene for the report and concurrently managing the persons' ego whilst the report is the thing that the board grades.  Otherwise people like me (and no doubt you in the future) will attend a selection board, put the reports into piles according to the grade and select the top ones until we had enough.  And trust me, it is not that easy at all!

Remember, a well crafted report will scupper a career, even if it says 'O' on the top in big red letters.  A C3 may well place a soldier below the promotability line, and regardless of the number of vacancies, the person will not be promoted.
CGS, just want to say thanks for an informative reply. We often get told that the grade doesn't mean much but its nice to actually hear it from somebody who has actually been there.
Equally a B2 may well place someone above the promotability line and they could pick up (this has happened on a number of reports I have written!).
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