Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Carolyn M. Macola, PhD


This research explored an asymmetrical concept of personnel management, specifically whether status, rank, is an artificial barrier to employing qualified enlisted personnel in some company grade officer duties. It takes the approach under the Human Capital Theory and questions whether rank plays a roll in effective performance and whether eliminating rank as a criterion to employment, in some duties, can support Air Force transformation efforts, without negatively affecting culture (i.e. chain-of-command, customs and courtesies). It describes a concept where more emphasis is put on meeting the knowledge, education, experience, and training qualifications and the required rank be interchangeable between enlisted and officer. Key support factors include: increase in enlisted education level; reduction in end strength; undermanned career fields; and salary difference between enlisted and officer. The finding suggest status has little effect on one's ability to perform effectively and the extensive qualitative information indicates managing the knowledge personnel hold is the important aspect of human capital management. This concept is not intended to be a model of equality toward all airmen but attempts to increase the capability of the Air Force within the existing manpower constraints by putting the right person, in the right place, at the right time.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number