Vaj, about criteria for promotions, I’ll tell you how it usually goes.
We mostly keep track of how you’re doing, but it’s more so for prominent members of the community, in terms of how well you interact, how dedicated you seem, and basically, how visible you are. Eventually each captain knows his crew just fine, but I, the XO of Apollo, have no idea about the personality or talents of the newly assigned ensign on a random ship until I get to serve with him or change a word or two with him.
We add to the agenda the names of people we feel might be ready. Say, I think Lt-jr Pangloss was performing well, so I put her up for promotion. We all sit and chat about how Pangloss worked, raise our points for endorsing it, see if any other officers who served with him agree with me, or if someone has a problem with Pangloss. For example, Dante might be concerned about how his positive attitude is downright annoying, or dangerous for the ship if Pangloss insists on talking about how we can’t possible die doing a mine run with no shields and no warp.
If we agree Pangloss deserves to be promoted, he will be. If we agree he isn’t there yet, we either shot down the idea temporarily or place Pangloss under closer observation, that might involve giving him additional duties or having another senior officer take care of him for a week or two, until we reach a consensus.
Now, what we take into account for raising a candidate varies wildly, as each captain’s priorities vary a lot from ship to ship. The rank expectations are a must, but you’ll notice how they leave a lot of elbow room. A certain period of time has to pass since your last promotion to be elegible, technical skill on your primary expertise is considered, your aspirations to command, how positive an addition we think you are, if there’s someone we think should get it first… Promotions to lower ranks are easier to agree upon than higher ranks, at least.