Four Reasons to Get an Additional Army MOS

If you are a NCO or Officer serving in the Army National Guard, it would definitely be in your best interest to get an additional Army MOS.  In the paragraphs below, I want to share four good reasons to consider getting a second MOS.

# 1 Upward Mobility

Many states have limited upward mobility for certain MOS’s.  For some MOS’s there might not be any positions available for promotions.  This means you can get stuck with one rank until someone dies, retires or leaves the military.  This is not the position you want to be in.  For example, your state might only have one slot for an E-7 mortuary affairs NCO.  If there are five or six promotable E-6 NCOs, it might be difficult to get promoted.

# 2 Learn New Skills

Another great thing about getting a second MOS is that you learn new job skills.  These skills can help you in your military career, as well as your civilian career.  People with more than one MOS have additional skills that make them a better leader.  Being a good leader is about being well rounded and knowing a little bit about a lot.

# 3 Get Promoted Faster

Let’s face it, if you want to get promoted faster, this is probably the easiest way to do it.  Many MOS’s have a lot of slots in each state, which means there are typically lots of promotions.  These positions vary by state, based upon the force structure.  If your primary MOS is really slow for promotion purposes, with limited upward mobility, get a second MOS with lots of slots at ranks higher than your current rank.  This will help you immensely.

# 4 Get More Promotion Points

When you get an additional Army MOS, you can earn additional promotion and retirement points.  These benefit you in the long run.  Depending upon the length of the school, your new MOS might be worth 20 or more promotion points!

Final Thoughts

I’ve met lots of successful leaders in the ARNG and I have to tell you that all of them had at least TWO different MOS’s.  This includes officers and NCOs alike.  While I was in the ARNG, I was qualified with three different branches.  Smart leaders understand that it is their job to manage their own career wisely.  And one of the best ways to do that was to get a second (or third) Army MOS.

Do you have any other benefits you can think of for getting a 2nd MOS? Do you have any questions? Post them below. We will do our best to answer them. Thanks.

chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)

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11 thoughts on “Four Reasons to Get an Additional Army MOS”

  1. My husband looked into doing this. He’s a 91J and their promotion points hardly ever drop. He works as a 91B and asked if he could take it on as a second mos. He was told that even of they allowed it, it would only be a secondary mos so his promotion would still be based on 91j point requirements. So it was a waste of time for him to even try. Any solutions or recommendations?

  2. Is it possible to enlist with one MOS, such as 31B, and get awarded a secondary MOS, such as 68W under the ACASP if I am already a Nationally Registered EMT?

  3. Candace Ginestar

    I have 2 MOS, and it was helpful having them in 2 different branches and areas of expertise. I am fortunate that one of them was a QM branch MOS, so when I became an officer, I already had a foundation to build from with my Soldiers.

  4. Faith A. Coleman

    I didn’t know it was an option for people to choose another MOS. But I sure can understand how it would help in civilian life as well. Even though I didn’t intend to be a radiologist I still made sure I picked up a lot of knowledge from my own patient’s xrays. I like to give the message that no learning experience is wasted. That applied to being a journalist as. How unfortunate that some people take the attitude of not learning because they think they’ll never use the information.

    1. So true, no learning experience is wasted. In the regular Army, most Soldiers and Officers only have one area of expertise, but the USAR and ARNG are much different. To get promoted quickly, you need to have numerous specialties.

  5. For anyone researching for an Army National Guard career, a MOS is a military occupational specialty. Going for more than one MOS, whether one is in an NCO position or entry position, has the potential for more promotion and retirement points? Cool. What three MOSs were you qualified for, Charles? Why did you choose them, in particular? Just curious … in the long run.

  6. Neil O'Donnell

    Having just one Military Occupation Specialty will definitely limit a soldier’s chances for advancement, particularly with the seemingly endless shifting of bases and units around the country. Promotion and retirement points aside, having additional MOS’s might be a blessing if future cutbacks force a reduction in personnel. It is easier to compete and stay needed if you have multiple skills. Likewise, for soldiers returning to civilian life, having multiple MOS’s will better prepare them for future fluctuations in the national and global job markets: more skills, more options.

  7. As someone with a couple of MOS’s I must say, “Do it!” It’s always good to have as much training as possible and having more than one specialized field will always help you. You’ll be promoted faster. You’ll earn the respect of your leaders faster. It’s just all around a good thing.

    Not to mention, I was always a fan of AIT. You got to learn a whole lot about a certain subject and I found that very interesting. If you like learning new things and you want to further your military career, getting a second MOS is a great way to do that.

    1. Thanks for the comment Chad.

      I couldn’t agree more. Having a second or third MOS is one of the fastest ways to separate yourself from your peers and get promoted faster.

      Chuck Holmes

  8. Great posts, but I think that our States and Commands often do not see the benefits as clearly as you indicate here. It is often extremely difficult to convince your command or State to send you to a school that is not related to your MOS or their mission. Funding is usually the main reason behind this. Officers, I feel, do have some freedom as they approach CPT to change, but enlisted Soldiers often have 2+ MOSs. In fact, my MGS VC is an E-6 prior Company Sniper, Airborne, Ranger and now…a PROUD TANKER!

    1. Every state and every chain of command is different. I’ve always believed that Soldiers with two or more MOS’s had more to offer the Army and are more valuable to the Army than a Soldier with just one MOS. As a leader, I always supported my troops to get an additional MOS. Sometimes that wasn’t possible (because of funding normally), but I always went the extra mile to help them get any school that they wanted. An educated Soldiers is a valuable Soldier.

      Chuck Holmes

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