Defense Department employees will be moved into the department’s new performance appraisal system in six-month phases, although exactly who and how many will be in each phase is yet to be announced. The new Defense Performance Management and Appraisal Program formally started April 1 with some small defense components and some headquarters operations, encompassing only about 14,000 employees of an eventual total that probably will exceed 700,000. DPMAP is a three-level system with numerous provisions for employee input and dialog with the rating supervisor over a one-year cycle; results are to be used in decisions ranging from within-grade increases and rewards to demotion and firing. The next phase is scheduled to start October 1, with those employees presumably having only a six-month initial rating cycle since the eventual goal is to have all covered employees on an April 1-March 31 cycle. Early indications are that the next group will also be relatively small, with potentially a much larger number starting next April 1, putting them on a full one-year cycle from the outset. Following that, there apparently will be additional groups every six months until the last group enters in October 2018. Some DoD employees, such as those in demonstration projects and SES members and other senior career employees, will remain under their current, separate rating systems.