obtain accurate information or to clear any questions
you may have as soon as possible.
In addition to preparing a muster report daily, there
may be other occasions when the commanding officer
may require accurate and complete information
concerning the presence of all personnel. If you are
serving aboard a ship, and the ship is scheduled to get
under way at 1700 on a particular day, the need to
account for all personnel is very important. All
departments should submit accurate muster reports to
the personnel office to account for all personnel aboard.
Personnel who are not aboard must be reported via diary
message according to the Diary Message Reporting
System Users Manual (DMRSMAN), EPMAC, New
Orleans, LA, Document No. 1080#1 UM-01A.
Subsequently, a command muster report should be
prepared for the commanding officer and for
administrative record purposes.
If you are aboard a ship and the ship is at sea and
the officer of the deck announces a man overboard, the
need to receive accurate and complete information from
the different departments concerning the accountability
of all personnel is of paramount importance. If your
command requires that you prepare a muster report, it
must be accurate and complete. There is no room for a
You should maintain a neat file of all previously
prepared muster reports. Keep muster reports for at
least 2 years unless your command requires them to be
kept for a longer period. The muster reports file must
be accessible to all personnel who have the need to
know. You should also make sure that you distribute
copies of the muster report to all individuals, divisions,
or departments concerned. Always follow local
practices and procedures established for the
preparation, maintenance, and distribution of these
Now, turn your attention to case file establishment
CASE FILE ESTABLISHMENT AND
The establishment and maintenance of case files in
a personnel or administrative office is necessary. All
commands maintain case files. However, how
complete do you think those files are? Sadly, in many
cases, the files are not maintained properly or
Many do not contain sufficient
information to respond to inquiries.
Case files should contain as much information as
possible. There are many occasions when you have to
refer to those case files to respond to inquiries. In most
instances, you find that copies of some of the documents
that were supposed to have been kept as part of the
packet, and are necessary for a response, are not on file.
The need to maintain accurate and complete case
files cannot be overstated. Always keep excellent case
files for future reference. Whether you are responsible
for typing letters, orders, or any other documents,
remember it is always better to keep too much
information about an event than not enough.
After reading this chapter, you should know what a
standard letter, a multiple-address letter, a business
letter, an endorsement, and a memorandum are. You
should be able to determine when it is appropriate to
serialize standard letters. You should be able to
understand and differentiate the logs that are kept for
accounting for incoming and outgoing correspondence.
You should be able to identify some of the duties and
responsibilities of personnel involved with the handling
You should be able to understand the duties and
responsibilities of mail clerks and mail orderlies, their
qualifications, their training requirements, and the
overall importance and accountability of all U.S. mail.
You should know what a routine reply,
endorsement, transmittal or information sheet is and
when its use is appropriate.
You should understand directives, be able to
differentiate between the terms notices and instructions,
understand the filing arrangements of directives,
identify the instruction that is used to prepare directives,
and identify the instruction that shows what directives
your command should have.
You should be able to identity the four types of
messages, pro forma, and some terminology associated
with messages as reflected in the glossary of this
You should understand what a muster report is and
its importance to a command.
You should also be able to understand the
importance of establishing and maintaining good case
files at your command, since they contain the records
used in answering inquiries, or in general contain
information of future reference value.