a few questions about RMAS application

Hi all. I'm an Australian/Kiwi who's interested in becoming an officer when I finish school. I'm almost 16 and I've been looking at it for about 18 months now, so I'd be looking at an intake in early 2024. I've got a decent of idea of potential regiments and I've worked out the logistics of my application. Without sounding too like an arrogant arse, my CV is on track to be pretty bloody good by the time I can start my application for someone just out of school in terms of fitness, leadership experience, foreign languages, academics, etc. (hopefully). However, I do have a few questions that I haven't been able to find answers for anywhere else.

1. I've heard it's quite difficult to get in as an overseas applicant as an Australian or a Kiwi, is this the case? Is there anything I could do that would give me a better chance?

2. What is the timeline like with an application? Specifically:
a. Realistically, how long is it between starting your application and actually getting a place at RMAS? I can begin my application at the beginning of my last year at school and I'm very much interested in getting to Sandhurst as soon after I graduate as possible.
b. What's the gap between AOSB briefing and main board? I have relatives I can stay with in the UK but I'd rather not spend too much time away from a school, financial, and visa perspective.

I'd be very appreciative of any advice you could give me, cheers.
 
Last edited:

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Hi all. I'm an Australian/Kiwi who's interested in becoming an officer when I finish school. I'm almost 16 and I've been looking at it for about 18 months now, so I'd be looking at an intake in early 2024. I've got a decent of idea of potential regiments and I've worked out the logistics of my application. Without sounding too like an arrogant arse, my CV is on track to be pretty bloody good by the time I can start my application for someone just out of school in terms of fitness, leadership experience, foreign languages, academics, etc. (hopefully). However, I do have a few questions that I haven't been able to find answers for anywhere else.

1. I've heard it's quite difficult to get in as an overseas applicant as an Australian or a Kiwi, is this the case? Is there anything I could do that would give me a better chance?

2. What is the timeline like with an application? Specifically:
a. Realistically, how long is it between starting your application and actually getting a place at RMAS? I can begin my application at the beginning of my last year at school and I'm very much interested in getting to Sandhurst as soon after I graduate as possible.
b. What's the gap between AOSB briefing and main board? I have relatives I can stay with in the UK but I'd rather not spend too much time away from a school, financial, and visa perspective.

I'd be very appreciative of any advice you could give me, cheers.
As above, this answer is very different if you are a Commonwealth / British citizen, it will be harder and perhaps impossible (at present) if you are Commonwealth.

1. Unknown, I'm afraid. However anecdotally I've never encountered Australian / Kiwi serving officers, unless they were in Australian / Kiwi uniforms. Some soldiers (particularly in airborne forces) but the numbers aren't high. I've always presumed this is because Australians / Kiwis generally regard their own forces as high quality.

2. a. Minimum six months, much more likely to be a year, can be more. The application process is split between civilian and military run elements; it's not very flexible; and COVID has incurred backlogs and problems if you are planning to do it this year.

b. They are run by the same location (Westbury), so in your case I would contact them (or via your recruiter) at the time, and see if there is an ability to nominally pre-load you onto a Main Board. Normally it is a two stage process which means you need to pass the Briefing first before they will book MB, but since you are traveling an extreme distance they may be sensible and make an exception. If you can get through to them, your best bet is speaking to Westbury directly (military run) because the privatized civilian-run pipeline is focused on overall quotas and unlikely to do anything that requires additional work or exceptions
 
As above, this answer is very different if you are a Commonwealth / British citizen, it will be harder and perhaps impossible (at present) if you are Commonwealth.

1. Unknown, I'm afraid. However anecdotally I've never encountered Australian / Kiwi serving officers, unless they were in Australian / Kiwi uniforms. Some soldiers (particularly in airborne forces) but the numbers aren't high. I've always presumed this is because Australians / Kiwis generally regard their own forces as high quality.

2. a. Minimum six months, much more likely to be a year, can be more. The application process is split between civilian and military run elements; it's not very flexible; and COVID has incurred backlogs and problems if you are planning to do it this year.

b. They are run by the same location (Westbury), so in your case I would contact them (or via your recruiter) at the time, and see if there is an ability to nominally pre-load you onto a Main Board. Normally it is a two stage process which means you need to pass the Briefing first before they will book MB, but since you are traveling an extreme distance they may be sensible and make an exception. If you can get through to them, your best bet is speaking to Westbury directly (military run) because the privatized civilian-run pipeline is focused on overall quotas and unlikely to do anything that requires additional work or exceptions
Thanks for that, mate, I really appreciate it - really informative.
 

COMMONWEALTH APPLICATION UPDATE​

THE ARMY IS NOT CURRENTLY ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FROM COMMONWEALTH CANDIDATES.​

 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer

COMMONWEALTH APPLICATION UPDATE​

THE ARMY IS NOT CURRENTLY ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FROM COMMONWEALTH CANDIDATES.​

He's 15, the current status will change.

Despite what the site says about the Army being 'over-recruited', that message only appeared after COVID, which coincidentally caused a massive system backlog. Do the maths: the 'over-recruiting' is a training pipeline backlog due to COVID restrictions, probably combined with a reluctance to encourage overseas applicants to travel to the UK. By the same logic, since COVID probably hasn't improved retention to the same degree as it slowed recruitment, there is going to be a substantial under recruiting gap at some point in the near future.
 
Realistically he's five years away from making an application. I'm all for forward planning but by then the British Army will likely be about 50,000 strong.

Right now there's nothing he can do anyway.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Realistically he's five years away from making an application. I'm all for forward planning but by then the British Army will likely be about 50,000 strong.

Right now there's nothing he can do anyway.
Assuming it doesn't have to do any actual fighting. If so it will be about 00,000 strong.
 

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