The Cadet Officer in the British Armed Forces

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The British Armed Forces, also known as the Armed Forces of Her Majesty, are the military services responsible for the defense of the UK, its overseas territories and Crown dependencies. They also promote the broader interests of Britain, support international peacekeeping efforts and provide humanitarian assistance. The British Armed Forces now comprise: The Royal Navy, a blue-water navy with a fleet of seventy-five commissioned ships, together with the Royal Marines, a highly specialized amphibious light infantry force; the British Army, the main land warfare branch of the United Kingdom; and the Royal Air Force, a technologically sophisticated air force with a variety of operational fleets consisting of both fixed-wing and rotary aircraft.

The headquarters of the British armed forces is the ministry of defense (MOD) which means that the armed forces function under the ministries command. There is a plethora of career opportunities in the armed forces both operational and support roles furthermore, the army enrolls up to one hundred diverse rolls in seven divisions. However, a graduate is most likely to join the army as an officer. The aim of this report is to provide information about the out graduate recruitment of a cadet officer (officer trainee) in the armed forces. This report will highlight the key personality traits that would be required in a cadet officer and will identify some recruitment and selection methods that are used. A justification will be illustrated in each method. This report will also pay attention to the potential challenges that a cadet officer might come across to.

In order to attract people to work as cadet officer in armed forces, we need to advertise both internal and external ways. To begin with, internal advertising gives all employees a fair chance to apply and be considered. Moreover, it promotes the feeling of openness in the organization. In addition, external advertising opens up the role to a wider audience who may bring skills and experience you do not already have. Looking for a new member of staff means that you need to need to find sufficient information about him/her to decide to if they are good enough to invite them to an interview. It is carried out by either asking for a CV or sending application forms to be completed. Application form is a good way for employers to draw out all information they need to decide of weather to invite him/her for an interview, unlike CVs. After selecting candidates with suitable personalities from the answers they gave in the application form, they are taken to do couple of tests which they should pass in order to proceed to interview stage. Thus, candidates are challenged for couple of weeks in order to asses specific skills within them. They should be mentally and physically prepared.

Firstly, candidates are situated in ultimate responsibilities, people with different cultures and the way they react to other people when cold, hot, hungry, exhausted, etc… to asses their leadership qualities and problem-solving skills. Furthermore, employees check candidate’s courage, discipline, their loyalty and respect for others as leadership is based on trust given and received by the leader and people, he/she leads. Secondly, physical tests where candidates are asked to do five tests where each test is different from the other. Beep test is the first test where candidates are supposed to run between two markers 20m apart, reaching the marker before beep sound. This test is used to measure the cardiovascular fitness. Second test is performing sit-ups while someone is holding the feet to increase stability. This test is carried out to measure abdominal strength. Third test is press-ups, which is similar to sit-ups, but this test is used to measure the upper strength of the body. Obstacle course is the fourth test which is used to measure overall strength, speed and readiness. The last test is 2. 4km timed run, which is carried out in both rough and flat surfaces.

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Thirdly, medical testing, which is one of the tests that the cadet officer takes to be in the armed forces. The test is carried out on the first day of the assessment process, a doctor will check the applicant’s health to ensure that the person is healthy enough to join the armed forces. The assessment will include the applicants past medical history, current health and a full-body medical examination and other tests. A urine, hearing, eyesight, colour perception and lung capacity test will be taken along with a body mass index test. An electrodiogram test is also preformed, this test measures the electrical activity of the persons. Some applicants will have to go through an echocardiogram or and exercise spirometry test, the former is scan that examines the structure of the heart, while the latter measures how well the lungs work before and after an exercise. Although some of the medical records have been already taken into account a pass result is not guaranteed until the doctor has fully considered both medical and consolation tests. Applicants must make sure not to eat food or drink fizzy drinks, alcohol or sugary drinks 12 hours before the medical assessment since they may affect the urine test and prevent energetic exercise for at least 3 day before the test. After the pre-selection assessment, further information, referral or consideration by the senior military doctor in charge of recruitment is required to ensure that the correct decision is taken for some individuals. A career discussion will be held where applicants will be asked about why they want to join the armed forces and what role they’re interested in, they will also be given feedback about how well they did in their assessments.

Selection will be done after checking the reference and background of each applicant and if everything is okay the employers are going to send an offer of employment to the selected applicants. After accepting the offer a date will be given to start training and the individual will formally enlist the armed forces. As mentioned before, many tests are required if someone is willing to join the army. In addition to that, knowing an individual’s personality is important in the military too. The military usually attracts men who are less anxious, and are more likely to worry less. They tend to be more aggressive, and may be less concerned about what others may feel, when compared to other civilians. These men could also be more interested in competing rather than cooperating, and this is what makes them more interested in joining the military.

There are several traits that are required for someone to be a cadet officer. One of these traits is absolutely hardiness. Hardiness is the ability to endure hardships and tough conditions, no matter what happens. When joining the army, they leave everything behind. Therefore, it is needed for the soldiers to be tough enough to face all the struggles that they may come across in the future. They may also be in the risk of losing one of their body parts if a severe war existed. So, hardiness is really necessary for a cadet officer, as he may need it to overcome his difficulties, as well as needing it for the sake of encouraging other soldiers too. Secondly, a good leader makes a good credit officer. For a cadet officer to be accepted and respected, a good leadership is needed. Military leadership works by influencing the other soldiers to do the given missions, by motivating them and providing the purpose, as well as direction. A leader provides direction by making decisions and solving problems, in addition to supervising and evaluating. Leadership is an important trait that is needed in the military, as a bad one may cause loss of lives, not only loss of money. Moreover, to take responsibility for the actions done is surely one of the essentials in a leader, as well as supervising. What is meant by supervising is to get hold of the situation, and to make sure that all the plans are done properly, including giving orders and searching for the accomplishment. Therefore, it is necessary for a cadet officer to practice supervising in order to be a good leader.

In addition to hardiness and leadership, other traits are required for a cadet officer such as self-confidence, realism and ambition, which may help in making him a good cadet officer in the military. This is a key problem in getting more young men and women to join the army, according to Gen Dannatt, in the report revealed in Telegraph in November 2007. Pay is determined by the Armed Forces Pay Review Body, which is based on interviews with soldiers. The general also states that he will ask the pay review board whether it believes a soldier's pay is sufficient to compete with less demanding and safer professions. Gen Dannatt said in the report that different army pay structures were unfair and divisive for different personnel. The pay system was very complex and it was necessary to review it. In order to get enrolled as an officer in the armed forces, candidates will get through lots of challenges. To begin with, candidates face a different lifestyle in the army which it is hard to cope with. The report states that the current level of operational commitments is unsustainable, adding that the balance between work and life is a growing concern, and that the high level of operational commitment, high levels of activity between tours and a lack of time for personal interests and career development all contribute to a feeling of underestimation and overwork.

This area most likely worries the chiefs of the defense. While young, single men and women tend to enjoy the ferocious pace of life in the military today, older married men and women are fed up. The report states that most soldiers enjoy operations, but a series of inspections and unnecessary tasks at home undermine morality. Gen Dannatt describes the demanding pace of life in the army as mortgaging our people's goodwill and acknowledges that its long- term effect is harmful. Moreover, accommodation is one of the challenges that a cadet officer might face. Many in the Army strongly believe that much of the accommodation is poor. Soldiers routinely complain that they are living in damp houses without proper heating or insulation. The number of military police has also been cut, allowing gangs of youths to roam military estates.

The Ministry of Defense sold its entire supply of married quarters - about 57,000 homes - to Annington in 1996 for £1.6 billion. The Army was not given the cash, instead it went into Treasury coffers and, thus, there was no reinvestment in the military estate. Homes are leased back to the MOD until they are no longer needed. Annington can then renovate and sell them at market rates, without any obligation to prioritize military families. The contract for maintenance of service housing was awarded to a private company, Modern Housing Solutions. The army's demands are now so great that many soldiers do not take full leave or are restricted to local leave- Gen Dannatt says he is troubled by this.

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