The RCECM will be awarded to airmen serving in remotely piloted aircraft, cyber, space and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance career fields, who create direct combat effects from remote locations and lead to strategic outcomes or the delivery of lethal force. In some circumstances, airmen from other career fields may be considered for the RCECM, which will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Service members may be awarded the RCECM for actions completed on or after 11 September 2001, while also serving under the following conditions:
- Was assigned or attached to a unit directly in support of a DoD combat operation as approved by the chief of staff of the Air Force (listed below)
- Was serving in a remotely piloted aircraft; cyber; space or intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance career field
- Personally provided hands-on employment of a weapon system that had direct and immediate impact on combat operations
- Was not physically exposed to hostile actions or at risk of exposure to hostile action