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General Information About Messages
Personnelman 3 & 2 - Military manual for government personnel administration
Chapter V Enlisted Service Records
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 mistake. 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 reports. Now,  turn  your  attention  to  case  file  establishment and maintenance. CASE FILE ESTABLISHMENT AND MAINTENANCE 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 completely. 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. SUMMARY 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 of   correspondence, especially    classified correspondence. 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 training manual. 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. 4-18

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