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Navy Chief Warrant Officer 5W-5 CW5 (Previous)
Chief Warrant Officer 5

Navy Ensign

O-1 Junior Officer, U.S. Navy
(Next) O-2 LTJGNavy Lieutenant Junior Grade
Lieutenant Junior Grade
Navy Ensign
Navy Ensign
Navy O-1 Ensign

Class Junior Officer
Abbr. ENS
Title Ensign (last name)
Paygrade O-1 (DoD Paygrade)
OF-1 (NATO Code)
Salary $2784.00/mo

What is a Ensign?

Ensign is the entry-level commissioned officer's rank in the U.S. Navy, and is equivilent to the rank of Second Lieutenant in the other armed services. Ensigns generally serve on naval vessels as division officers, responsible for leading a crew of seamen and petty officers in a specific division like engineering or administration. As junior officers, Ensigns also engage in on-the-job training and receive mentoring and training from superior officers and experienced petty officers.

Sailors may receive a commission as Ensign after successfully completing Naval Officer Training, and sailors joining with a four-year college degree may be eligible to enter the Navy directly at the rank of Ensign. Various programs within the Navy exist to help recruit and train Officer Candidates from the enlisted ranks.

Newly-commissioned Ensigns may be stationed directly on a ship after training, or they may continue with one or more years of specialty training depending on the current need for officers and their chosen career path.

Ensign is the 17th rank in the United States Navy, ranking above Chief Warrant Officer 5 and directly below Lieutenant Junior Grade. A ensign is a Junior Officer at DoD paygrade O-1, with a starting monthly pay of $2784.00.

How do you become a Ensign?

A Ensign is most often promoted from Chief Warrant Officer 5 (CW5), although promotion from lower paygrades may occur with sufficient display of leadership and experience.

What is the proper way to address a Ensign?

The correct way to address a Ensign named Mr. Weber is "Ensign Weber", or written as ENS Weber. In formal situations, a Ensign should always be addressed by their full rank.

How much does a Ensign earn?

Basic pay for an entry-level Ensign with no years of experience is $2,784.00 per month. A Ensign receives an automatic raise to their basic pay every one to two years.

Basic pay is only a small percentage of a Ensign's final compensation package. In addition to a monthly basic pay salary, a Navy Ensign may be eligible for multiple types of allowances and bonus pay including clothing allowance, personal money allowance, hostile fire pay, housing allowance, and more.

For full details on the Navy's Ensign compensation and retirement plan, visit the 2016 Navy Ensign Pay Chart. A full table of the Navy's current paygrades are available at the Navy Pay Chart.

The Government civilian-employee equivalent of a Ensign is paid under the General Schedule payscale. For more details, learn more about the General Schedule payscale.

Equivalent Ranks

Air Force Second Lieutenant - Equivalent to Ensign
Air Force
Second Lieutenant
Army Second Lieutenant - Equivalent to Ensign
Second Lieutenant
Coast Guard Ensign - Equivalent to Ensign
Coast Guard
Marine Corps Second Lieutenant - Equivalent to Ensign
Marine Corps
Second Lieutenant
Navy Ensign - Equivalent to Ensign