Army First SergeantE-8 1SG (Previous)
First Sergeant

Army Sergeant Major

E-9 Noncommissioned Officer, U.S. Army
(Next) E-9 CSMArmy Command Sergeant Major
Command Sergeant Major

Army Ranks » Sergeant Major RankSGM PaySGM Rank HistoryPromotion Information

Rank badge of a Sergeant Major E-9 Sergeant Major - U.S. Army Ranks

Army Sergeant Major
Army E-9 Sergeant Major Army Military Ranks
Class Noncommissioned Officer
Abbr. SGM
Title Sergeant Major (last name)
Paygrade E-9 (DoD Paygrade)
OR-9 (NATO Code)
Basic Pay $5,174/mo

Sergeant Major is the highest enlisted rank in the Army, and the base rank required for the leadership position of Command Sergeant Major. A Sergeant Major assists Officers in a battalion-sized force of 300 to 1,000 soldiers, and leads soldiers and junior officers placed directly under his command. A Sergeant Major may also serve as the senior non-commissioned officer at a battallion-sized headquarters unit.

Sergeant Major is the 11th rank in the United States Army , ranking above First Sergeant and directly below Command Sergeant Major. A sergeant major is a Noncommissioned Officer at DoD paygrade E-9, with a starting monthly pay of $5,174.

How do you become a Sergeant Major?

A Sergeant Major is most often promoted from First Sergeant (1SG), although promotion from lower paygrades may occur with sufficient display of leadership and experience. Click here to learn more about promotion to Sergeant Major.

What is the proper way to address a Sergeant Major?

The correct way to address a Sergeant Major named Mr. Miller is "Sergeant Major Miller", or written as SGM Miller. In formal situations, a Sergeant Major should always be addressed by their full rank.

How much does a Sergeant Major earn?

Basic pay for an entry-level Sergeant Major with Over 10 years of experience is $5,173.80 per month.

A Sergeant Major receives an automatic raise to their basic pay every one to two years. Basic pay is only a small percentage of a Sergeant Major's final compensation package.

In addition to a monthly basic pay salary, a Army Sergeant Major may be eligible for multiple types of allowances and bonus pay including food allowance, personal money allowance, retirement benefits, and more.

For full details on the Army's Sergeant Major compensation and retirement plan, visit the 2018 Army Sergeant Major Pay Chart. A full table of the Army's current paygrades are available at the Army Pay Chart.

Military Occupational Specialties for Army's E-9 Sergeant Major

Interior Electrician

  • Active/Reserve:Both
  • Officer/Enlisted:Enlisted
  • Restrictions:None
M1 Armor Crewman

  • Active/Reserve:Active Duty
  • Officer/Enlisted:Enlisted
  • Restrictions:None
Power Distribution Specialist

  • Active/Reserve:Army Reserve
  • Officer/Enlisted:Enlisted
  • Restrictions:None
Multimedia Illustrator

  • Active/Reserve:Both
  • Officer/Enlisted:Enlisted
  • Restrictions:None
Criminal Investigations Special Agent

  • Active/Reserve:Both
  • Officer/Enlisted:Enlisted
  • Restrictions:None

To learn more about Military Occupational Specialties, see our complete list of MOS job titles.

Patch of a Sergeant Major Equivalent Ranks to the Army's E-9 Sergeant Major

To learn more about the Army's rank structure, see our complete list of Army ranks.

The Government civilian-employee equivalent of a Sergeant Major is paid under the General Schedule payscale. For more details, see this Army rank to GS grade conversion table .

To see a list of military medals and decorations that can be earned by servicemembers in the Army and other branches of the military, see our list of military decorations and medals.