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Here’s why it’s beneficial for the army to use military time

time clock employee
(© Olivier Le Moal –

Using military time compared to normal (civilian) time makes a notable difference when serving the country in law enforcement, emergency and protective services. The benefits apply to various United States government agencies like the national guard, Air Force, Navy, Marines, and the Army. This article will discuss what military time is and why it’s beneficial to use, especially in the Army.

When looking at military time, it runs differently to the regular clock-system that everyone else uses, which is also referred to as the 12-hour system. According to the 24-hour clock system each hour of the day has its own number, for example, 2PM will be designated as the number 14, and 3PM will be the number 15, continuing in consecutive numerical order until twelve o’clock. Additionally, it doesn’t use the AM and PM suffix after each hour, which is used in the 12-hour clock system.

It is easy to learn military time, 1 AM to 12PM is written as 0100 to 1200, and it continues in the numerical order, for example, 1PM will be 1300 hours until midnight, which will be 2400 or 0000 hours.

It is worth noting that military time is written and pronounced differently than normal time, for example, 1 PM in normal time is referred to as one o’clock and in military time it is referred to as 0100 hours (zero one hundred hours). Other examples include 7:45 AM as seven forty-five AM or 13:45 is referred to as thirteen hundred forty-five hours.

Eliminating confusion

One of the main reasons why military time is used is to eliminate confusion. Using the 24-hour clock system creates a clear understanding of what the time is. It also eliminates the  time to think or convert the time from a 12-hour clock system. Converting military time is an easy process consisting of subtracting 1200 from the desired number designated to the time, for example, 1700 (also 5PM on the 12-hour clock) minus 1200 will equal 500, becoming 5:00 PM.
For any military official on duty, especially in the army, the stakes are high and the environment is fast-paced; any system used needs to be as accurate and time-saving as possible including something basic like telling the time. The army is an environment where it is required to always have the right time and it can either hinder or save a situation.

Other benefits for using military time

There are other benefits for using military time, these can apply to many situations, private or official. These are listed below.


Military time is used in business record-keeping, for example, areas of administration and accounting, which includes filling in timesheets, log books, or various reports. Additionally, it’s used in business documents so that it is clear for everyone to understand, especially in cases like lawsuits where information needs to be as accurate as possible. Other applications include doing business in different time zones and detailing time and date in business communication like emails, official letters, and meetings.


Using the military time while travelling is more efficient than using a regular 12-hour time system. It makes it easier to read travel information like boarding passes or itineraries. With overlapping time zones it creates a universal time system that applies to any location and keeps everyone on the same page.


Military time is an easy system to learn to tell the time and is beneficial to use in the army because, compared to the 12-hour clock system, it’s more reliable and eliminates any confusion between AM and PM.

Story by Virginia Sagal

augusta free press
augusta free press