Artisan Trades, who's used them now they're out?

Discussion in 'Sappers' started by Grievo_87, Nov 17, 2010.

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  1. Heya, for those I've not spoken to, I'm Ex-Australian Arty and I'm exploring the RE as a career option. However there are alot of Trades to go for.

    Seeing as I'm "Getting back in" (Different Army, idea's the same) I don't think I'll be getting out in a hurry, but this time I'd like to get out and have some form of skill. From what I gather, it's usually the Artisan trades that end up spending the most time doing the sapper work.

    So my question is, who's ex RE artisan, who's got out and got a job in their trade? How did you find the reaction of employers to your previous experience? and how easy/difficult was it finding work in that field?

    Any replies would be greatly appreciated,


  2. using the "F" word is not getting off on the best foot Grievo.

    i done my full time, got out & am still working as a sparky.

    i had all my city & guilds and potential employers did not question any of my qualifications or experience, if anything they were looked on favourably. you only get out what you put in at the end of the day mate.

    i enjoyed my trade in The Corps & still enjoy it now, especially when it pasy a lot more than it did in green skin.

    your life .... your choice. it ain't a dress rehearsal.
  3. I've been on civvy sites whilst working for my Dad on leave and there have been ex RE tradesmen working happily away. A lot is said that RE tradesmen are shit, they can't keep up etc but I think we are doing ourselves a dis-service. The guys are trained pretty well and whilst initially they will struggle to keep up with a civvy tradesmen they will soon be doing ok.
  4. IMHO, RE tradesman were "overqualified" for civvy street. I'll elaborate that, as it [probably] agrees with plant_life's comment. Several of the most valuable attributes the Army instilled was attention to detail, getting it right first time, and maintaining high standards. Critical when 'in' - even if simply to avoid a besting - and invaluable when 'out'. Except... well, here's a real life example. Building sites; they need a lot of window frames knocked up very quickly. An RE chippy will make 3 per hour. 3 blindingly perfect frames with precise 90deg corners, etc. And that isn't what is wanted. A builder wants 10 frames an hour, to a "that'll do standard" and 'good enough' corners.

    IME, that's where the "shit" reputation comes into it. Nothing wrong with the skill, experience, craftsmanship, simply an [initial] inability to work down to a lower standard.

    If you get the chance, train as a plumber. A lot of the T-trades are susceptible to economic conditions (surveyors need construction work, and in lean times construction work dries up). A-trades,carpenters are in much the same boat. Sparkies less so, there is always a call for electrician esp in the insurance areas. But probably the best trade is plumber, esp with central heating skills. There is *always* a demand for plumbers, regardless of the economy, and especially in cold weather.

    IT is no longer the goldmine is was, and in truth hasn't been since Jan 2000 (more so with IR35). Comms is, well, dubious.

    Hope this helps. I've been out 14yrs now, and seen the world change three times since... and wish I had trained as a plumber. Most useful trade in the UK in the last 20 years. Whilst in, see if you can pickup welding 'on the side', much the same was as 'learning' HGV and how to cabby a Moggy/LWT/CET...
  5. I have visited a site were the site manager was an ex RE LCpl. He got out, started off on the tools as a chippy and worked his was up very quickly.
    As for trade recommendations for good employability HVAC is another good choice because of the maintenance requirements.
  6. I was a Fitter Machinist.

    Piece of piss finding work.
    No-one was was interested in what qualification I had, only could I do the job.
    I got knocked back at one interview 'cos the boss was concerned that I'd not be quick enough with no back ground in production work, but speed wasn't a problem when I started else where.

  7. Another area where plumbers tend to fit in is central heating, esp with Gas Safety, and the legal requirements for landlords to do an annual gas check. And leading in nicely with plumbing is "green energy", such as ground heat pumps, and solar PV panels.

    Painter & Decorator is another good one if the Corps still has that trade. Again, a lot of the 'company' work depends on the market conditions, but private work is still pretty much around.

    Anyway, whatever you choose, good luck! Every area is different, and times change.
  8. Former Sapper tradesmen are always sought after by civvie companies, I was an apprentice Plumber prior to joining the Corp. I have been out 18 years and I have been teaching Plumbing for the last 7 years. Many of my mates made the natural transition to the building industry, Sappers have the work ethic that employers love, the money is pretty good and not having to stag on is a bonus!! my advice... go for it, train a a Plumber.