A model for the future of the TA?

Discussion in 'Army Reserve' started by msr, Oct 29, 2009.

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  1. msr

    msr LE

    Was musing about this last night and wondering whether there is any validity in my thinking:

    In the current COIN Ops climate, we need more CIMIC stylee specialists for the transition from Hold to Build (The Clear being performed by the regulars) so how does this look as a model? I have used linguists here, but you could insert civil engineers, local government, lawyers, finance bods etc as appropriate.

    Get in touch with all the Modern Language depts at the universities and the various alumnae associations for the publicity and offer a 5 year (from the date of graduation) PQO commission to the linguists.


    1) Sign up for 5 years from graduation
    2) Do a PQO course during the summer holidays whilst at Uni
    3) Attach yourself to your local TA unit for admin /MATTs / Offrs Mess Dos
    4) Complete MATTs level 3 annually
    5) No Bounty
    6) Funded for an OU Masters in your language / speciality during the 5 years
    7) 1 days notice for a 2 day call out (to help with a crisis)
    8 ) 7 days notice for a 14 day call out in a non-warfighting capacity
    9) 3 months notice for a 'war fighting' mobilisation

    By limiting this to 5 years, which is probably as far ahead as defence can reasonably look, you can turn the taps on and off sufficiently quickly to maintain a stream of specialists at very little cost.


  2. Yeah, my initial thought is... why is everything about the 'Officer Corps'?

    Plenty of our soldiers are professional experts.
  3. Msr,

    Just a short opening to kick things off.....

    Not withstanding the issues around capability and force regeneration within the TA as a whole, there is a very basic fundamental issue, which is numbers.

    Could the TA attract sufficiently able individuals to apply for these roles?

    Low level activity can be resourced through the current set up if required and the Army does have quite able units (such as the RE, REME, RAMC etc...)

    However, given that some activity is fairly high level and can require individuals with significant (post qualification) experience, it would not be enough to just trawl Universities and OTC's for suitable candidates.

    Are those in Industry, (the ones with the skills which we need), going to opt to join the TA or become a (well paid) contractor/advisor instead?

  4. I thought that actually!

    I think that Mobilising complete units would be the way forward. My Bn has just had 120 back from Ops nad is looking to deploy another 80 in 18 months time.

    It would be better to deploy the whole Bn less frequently than to send out penny packets of the same tour junkies.....

    Doing TSC(A) it was repeatedly driven home that we would be expected to mobilise but I'm sure there are plenty who won't go and in any case there aren't enough spaces for everyone.

    It would give the whole unit a greater sense of purpose if everyone were to go together.
  5. msr

    msr LE

    All valid points, I would like to see the model tested. I think it offers the right balance to get the right people.

  6. msr

    msr LE

    Pay levels and 'clout' primarily.

  7. well I know for a fact that CIMIC projects are going to be directed more the TA way, and my Adj in particular has made it one of his priorities to fill this 'niche' at war, essentially encouraging people within my regt to mobilise. and yes, some need encouragement.

    what i would love to see happen, is a crack squad of trained professionals (lets call them, say, the B-Team) get put together and mobilise as a CIMIC team, and from the whole TA i imagine quite a few crack squads could be put together based on their training and civvy qualifications. at war, they are rogue, they answer to no man and wander the country acquiring various materials to achieve certain projects.
  8. I thought pay had to be matched when deployed? Or are you going to commission everyone to the rank where military pay matches civvy salary? (Which would make me a Colonel - nice)

    Instead of rank, what about appointment? The brigage COS doesn't have to be a Brig himself to speak with his authority...
  9. So the plan is to abandon the rank and file and make the TA Officer only?

    You'll have the facebook 'old guard' shifting its attention to ARRSE next
  10. msr

    msr LE

    I would envisage these posts being in addition to the current / future structure.
  11. In addition to the current structure?
  12. For what its worth, I think that the future TA should be heavily tilted towards CIMIC, but I think that the day of the 'Independant' TA unit is over. Instead, I would suggest that each TA unit is integrated into the ORBAT of a Regular formation.

    This would see (For instance) the current 3 Bn Warminster Rifles (V) becoming D, E, and F companies (V) on the establishment of the Regular 1 Bn Warminster Rifles. In peacetime, the parent Bn supplies equipment and PSIs to the TA component, and although the TA element would still do their normal weekend training at company level, annual camp would be part of a Bn concentration with the parent Regular unit. The HQ element of the (V) would blister onto the side of the Regular Bn HQ, and could support the Rear Party on deployment.

    All the TA troops would know their Regular counterparts, and be kept up to date on training and doctrine and the Regulars will get to learn and value what the TA can contribute to the party.

    In wartime, the (V) element can provide IRs to the parent, and also all those weird and wonderful specialist skills found in a TA unit which most Regular units don't need full time.

    Where the Regular unit does most of the warfighting, the TA element can concentrate on more CIMIC related tasks. The TA units can concentrate on these skills rather than the pure warfighting, which, to be honest, we don't have the time or equipment to develop.

    In effect, the Regulars would 'Clear' and the TA would 'Hold'.

    The 'drawback' would be the removal of a lot of the admin structure above Major for TA Officers, unless they get assigned to Staff roles. There might also be an increase in admin for the Regulars, but nothing that a few NRPS could not pick up on a day to day basis.

    Any thoughts?
  13. msr

    msr LE

    The Combat parts of the TA should help with Hold and the CIMIC stylee bits do the initial build with a steady transition to DfID et al.

  14. Which is just an admin(ish) change to the TA Infantry. In the main this solution is impossible to implment in the Sigs as those with that type of role disbanded a month or so ago. Medics, no reason to change the current structure but I suppose you could add a regular sub unit to each TA unit. RLC, I'm not sure, not convinced about the arguements about only sending IR's surely TA Sqns would work?????
  15. Why on earth would a keen soldier, eager for deployment some time this century be interested in a commission? Much more fun as an NCO with many more opportunities to do some interesting trade work.

    For a CIMIC deployment the work you do, not the rank in which you do it is what counts, and the regs know that there is a bloody good chance that a corporal in CIMIC knows a damn site more than an equivelant officer in the regs (especially when it comes to project managing civil contingencies).