With time, Airmen get promoted to higher ranks during their stay in the Air Force. Also, eligible Airmen can apply for selection as an Officer in the Flying Branch within the age group of 19 to 20 years. Serving Airmen can apply for selection to the Officer’s rank in the Ground Duty Branches (other than Medical).
(a) Annual Appraisal Report (AAR /AR/ACR):
The basis for promotion in the Indian Air Force is the 'Annual Appraisal report (AAR)' raised every year by the Superior Officer under whom the Airmen work. It is applicable for all ranks.
(b) Promotion Exams:
In addition AAR, Airmen also need to clear departmental exams for their next promotion. These internal exams are conducted to ensure that Airmen have essential knowledge on Air Force law, service writing, administration, and military history apart from professional knowledge.
(c) Minimum service:
The next element is the 'minimum tenure of service' in a given rank. This is a necessary requirement for a promotion.
A Promotion Board is constituted in the month of May each year at Air Force Record Office to consider airmen for promotion. The minimum service presently in vogue is as follows:
Minimum Length of Service
Aircraftsman to Leading Aircraftman
2 Years (including training)
Leading Aircraftman to Corporal
Corporal to Sergeant
13 Years and 6 months
Sergeant to Junior Warrant Officer
Junior Warrant Officer to Warrant Officer
Warrant Officer to Master Warrant Officer
Please note that in order to get promoted one has to pass the Corporal Promotion Exam and Sergeant Promotion Exam. There is no test for being promoted to LAC.
After the rank of Sergeant, other than JWO Promotion Exam one has to have a good record of skill, behaviour, etc. which are also considered for further promotion.
With the higher ranks, the salary of the Airmen also increases. Here is the complete detail:
Rank of Airmen (Promotional Vertical)
Pay Matrix Level
Starting Basic Pay
Military Service Pay (MSP)
Junior Warrant Officer
Master Warrant Officer