A question on TA service, transferring to regular

Discussion in 'Join the Army - Reserve Recruitment' started by Ian1983, Dec 24, 2008.

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  1. I was wondering if anyone could shed some light.

    I attempted my main board for the regular army in November and failed. The things I failed on I believe I can improve upon and I would like to join the TA for a short period leading up to my next attempt. I would like to re attempt the main board in September-November 09, hopefully to walk through the gates of Sandhurst by January 2010 shortly prior to my 27th birthday.
    Would a TA unit be happy for me to join for such a short period as a private (for the experience), or would they prefer for me to apply to be a officer and help with the procedures in ironing out my weaknesses leading up to the main board.
    The TA unit I'm considering joining is of the same regiment as I would like to commission into after Sandhurst if that makes a jot of difference.

    My other issue is my employer. I work at a small events company and I see my employer having issues with my joining the TA.
    I can see him having an issue with my potential mobilisation, however I do not intend to be with my present employer at that stage, but I cannot say this due to obvious reasons.

    I will be going down in the beginning of January to find out myself from a local TA unit (I spoke to a individual working there but was informed the TA unit was on leave and that it would be best to pop down the 2nd wednesday of January), but in the mean time I would like to ask the question and get peoples opinions.

    Many thanks
  2. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator


    I can only speak for my unit, but we are quite happy to accept people in your position - Contrary to many posts on the TA forum, we should be working with the "One Army concept" in our minds. If time in the TA helps prepare you for regular service then it can only be for the good. Without wishing to be negative, not everyone who applies for AOSB makes the grade, and so the TA unit may have you on their books for longer than you originally intended anyway.

    I would suggest you forget about the TA officer route, as the time you have available acts against you. You would be better to join as a soldier and have a bit of fun for a year. Plenty of time at RMAS for the officer stuff.

    One point - be honest about your intentions when you approach the TA unit. They should then support you towards that aim, and provide additional guidance for you. If they are not happy to accept you on those terms, turn on your heel, walk away, and find a better unit.

  3. Ian

    I am in a similar position myself having failed recently. I'm in the process of joining my local unit and have my selection next month. I was honest with them from the start and told them I intend to attempt my main board again with the hope of starting the commissioning course about the same time as yourself - there were no disputes about it. I'm entering as a Private as I was told it would benefit me most looking at the circumstances. The only downside was having to do my medical again when I'd already been passed fit two months before!

  4. Duke

    Many thanks for the candid response. I believe my standards have slipped in recent years through not being taxed in my career, which is why I failed my initial main board and I would like to do whatever is necessary in order to make sure there is no room for failure the second time around.

    Depending on the situation with the local regiment, if they suggest I go via the officer route, should I default to their suggestion, or would it be more prudent to be a private for a year or so and enjoy it for the experience it provides?
  5. P101

    Thats good to hear. I would like to begin in the January 2010 intake, however I would have to see how I believe my progress has been up until that point. I would only have one more shot, and although now 'old', I would kick myself if I didn't get myself full prepared for it.

    If you don't mind me asking P101, did you go straight to the TA unit after your main board and then their next available intake is in January/Februay?

    Many thanks
  6. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    The issue with going the TA officer route is that your entire year will be spent at an OTC doing Module 1 and 2, possibly module 3 if timings allow. By the time you go for AOSB, you will be at best part way through the system. The preparation you get will be good, but unfinished.

    If you go TA soldier you will have time to finish your basic training, and spend a little time in the ranks.

    There are arguments for and against, but I would suggest enjoying your time before getting caught up in the officer stuff. If the unit push you that way, then it is up to you to decide whether you are happy with their suggested training plan.
  7. Many thanks for your input Duke.

    Greatly appreciated.

  8. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    No problems. Good luck.
  9. I haven't read all the above posts in detail but just thought i should add that it may take more than 12 months for you to fininsh CMSR, if you then join the regulars you'll have to do basic training again so apart from a bit of fun, some experience and some extra cash you'll get no benefit from joining the TA.
  10. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Perhaps you should then before you post - there aren't that many of them :roll:

    If he is successful, he will be off to RMAS, so any headstart gained by undertaking CMSR will not be wasted. And does it really take over a year to go through CMSR? No wonder it is difficult to retain recruits.
  11. No, it takes six months usually. If people are not able to make the requisite weekends or the two week phase at the end, then obviously they have to wait until the next available one at their RTC. Some people can get it competed in as little as four months, if they are able to attend RTC weekends more than once a month, and can get the final two week exercise done soon after weekend 6. Taking a year to complete CMSR shows either a lack of commitment or that the individual may not have enough time to be in the TA because of their lifestyle/job etc.
  12. My only concern that has been raised in the last 3 posts is that I can appreciate it costs time and money to train a soldier. Would a TA unit see me as taking the michael if I rocked up and was looking for a short term for the experience. The particular TA unit is of the same regiment as I would be interested in commissioning into, however I wouldn't expect this to make a difference.

    ub2008- I would be looking to attend as many RTC weekends that I can/are available. The more experience I can receive the better. Hearing I could attend more then once a month is a positive thing for me.
  13. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator


    The wastage rate for TA recruits is huge - you would be just one of a large number who add to the training bill without serving for long in the TA. The difference is that you would then hopefully go on to serve in their regular unit.

    When you look at it as fostering relationships between your TA and regular Bns, it all starts to be cost effective.

    Example: We had a Pte soldier with us for a short period of time, who deployed to Herrick 6 with 3 Para in 2006. On his return, he went to RMAS and is now commissioned in to one of our regular Bns.

    I bumped into him recently, had a good chat, and discussed the operational insert for the 10 Coy soldier he had in his platoon on Op Herrick 8.

    A short investment from the TA has resulted in a "TA friendly" regular Pl Comd, taking a keen interest in the career management of a young TA soldier who he could have easily forgotten about once the tour was over.

    Worth the time and money? Definately.
  14. 15 people on my recruits selection weekend, 18 months later i was the first one to fininsh CMSR! Nothing to do with my commitment or availabilty for courses etc, it was totally due to Chilwells inability to get (correct) dates to me, get medicals sorted in time, get correct kit issued etc.
  15. msr

    msr LE

    Chilwell? Are you STRE?