Can I Require National Guard or Reserve Soldiers to Complete Required Tasks When They are not Drilling? | - Leader Development for Army Professionals

Can I Require National Guard or Reserve Soldiers to Complete Required Tasks When They are not Drilling?

Month after month Tasks are given out to complete misc things prior to drill i.e. Evals, ssd, online surveys, etc. Every month I get excuses, and now "we can't make them do it, or discipline them for it because they are off duty". I'm just getting fed up because it's taking time away from training to get completed. What can I do? I was considering a developmental counseling statement acknowledging the importance of meeting deadlines so the tasks do not conflict with training time. But I'm not sure how to word it.

Bottom Line

No there is nothing that can be done during non drill time.


Unfortunately, there is little to nothing that can be done in this situation. National Guard and Reserve units cannot force personnel to perform official duties when they are in their civilian capacity. Basically, during the time they are not drawing pay, they cannot be ordered to perform official duties. This is one of the readiness issues that the Guard and Reserves struggle with on a daily basis.

Possible Solutions

  1.  Now you might see if you and your chain of command can look at the issue from a different perspective and try to find a professional way to motivate each individual Soldier to get the requirements completed.
  2. Extended Duty Day for those that have requirements that must be accomplished during the drill period or over several drill periods.  Check with your JAG or IG but you might be able to have these Soldiers report earlier (meaning before 1st formation) and stay later, or even stay at the drilling location during drill weekends. This maximizes their available time during drill weekends and requires them to complete the assigned tasks.

I hope you found this information useful


Please like us
If you think this site is useful , follow us, and sign up for our newsletter


Hope this helps! Did you find this information useful? We Appreciate your feedback!
Please Read! Help Us Help please tell your peers, subordinates, and superiors. Also we are always looking for examples, classes, briefings, SOPs, templates and other information we can share for free in the Armsroom. Please help us help others by sending your ARMS ROOM stuff to:

posted on 10/27/2017 under Q&A
Mark is a Retired Command Sergeant Major with 26 years of military leadership experience. He held 3 military occupational specialties (Field Artillery, Nuclear Weapons Tech, and Ammunition Ordnance). Mark is one of the leading military authors in the fields of leadership, counseling, and training.

Disclaimer: Though all content posted on is reviewed by our qualified subject matter experts, you should not make decisions based solely on the information contained in this post. Use information from multiple sources when making important professional decisions. This is not an official government website.

You might be interested in…

Leave a Comment

We will never publish or sell your email address, nor will we ever send you information you have not requested.