Communication systems engineer advice


As i mentioned in another post im thinking of going back into the forces and am looking into some of the trades in the Army. CSE being one of the main ones. Ive got a few general questions im hoping someone can help me with.
Where can i be posted in this trade. ie where abouts in UK or are they at every base all over. Also are there any decent overseas postings/deployments in this trade? or is it just UK postings and tours in afghan these days. And one final question, How often does the average CSE stay at each posting. Are you shifted around every couple of years?
Any helpful answers would be much appreciated.
1. You can be posted to pretty much anywhere that the British armed forces are serving.
2. Quantify decent. It is what you make it.
3. Lots of Afghan and other things. Depends if you want to put yourself out there for it or just be a fatty who stays at home all the time. (these days are disappearing fast - PAP10 it is not a bad thing)
4. At present you are shifted around approx every two to three years.
Thanks for the response ski geek. When I said decent postings I meant places like cyprus but thinking about it that's probably the only one. As for afghan. I don't mind going there, intact I want to, I just don't want it to be the only place I'll ever go. I forgot to ask how long are the tours in this trade. I know some are 6 months but infantry can be 12 - 18 months. What's CSE like. And you mention what you put yourself up for. What did you mean? I didn't think deployment was optional?
With re to being moved every 2-3 years is I'm 30 and at the age of settling down with a family, I love the military life but it's not really fair on them draggin their arrses around the country. I know that's army life and for it sacrifices must be made but still gotta think of them. I was hoping it would be more like every 5 years or something.
Hey Juiced, CSE trade is a weird one especially with the merger of Technicians proper and IS guys, so postings now are generally a mixed bag of responsibilities. You need to be a bit of an IT geek and technical geek and if you can nail that then you should be OK. CSEs' are at all Royal Signals units and are more widely employed within Campaign Signal Regiments as you will obtain Special to Arm Training. There are plenty of opportunities to deploy and get out and about, you just need to make the Chain of Command aware of your aspirations. I do, however, get the impression that you are less than happy with moving wound every 2 or 3 years. bear in mind that in that 2 or 3 year period you will be deployed for at least 6 months and do pre deployment training for a lot of the time, and that does not include all the exercises, working weekends, last minute jobs, fast balls and duties. So if you are more worried about staying static and starting a family then I would advise you to re-think what you want.....

I hear the RAF stay in one place for a longer period of time! Although they might not have such a high recruitment drive lately! Good luck mate!
Thanks for your reply beerkeg. Ive been working in i.t for most of my adult life. although with a few years in construction. After looking more into the options in the army i cant help but feel a sway into the Royal Engineers and learn a trade. All my quals are in i.t but to be honest im gettin a bit sick of the whole sat behind i desk thing. I miss gettin my hands dirty and doin more physical work.
With regards to postings and deployments etc. I personally dont have a problem with all the moving. I just sort of feel it wouldnt be fair on my family but my GF is very supportive and said she would move around with me. I dont mind particularly being away from her for periods. It would be a nice break for me Ha ha. But dont tell her i said that :).
Id love to go to places like Cyprus but i cant really base my choice of trade on the postings available. Doing something i enjoy is what matters really. And from what ive read on the forum most RE deployments are to Afghan.
With re to the RAF. I use to be in the RAF when i was 18. Depending on what trade you do you dont get moved around much. Wouldnt really want to go back in the The RAf tho.
Well I completely understand. Sometimes a change in life is good and at 30 it is not too late to try and learn new things! I miss the being on the shop floor, getting stuck in, so I say go for it. The RE will offer you many possibilities and yes they are heavily deployed but the reward often out weighs the down side. Whatever you decide mate, I hope you do well!
Postings to Campagne Signal Regiments would be for five years, and there is always the chance to extend at a unit, or re-tour. At a CSR you will do 2 - 3 Op tours whilst in that unit.

Small teams of Scaleys called Royal Signals Infantry Support Teams are being formed and established with Inf Bns, so the postings plot just got massive. It will get bigger (possibly) as we may also be providing support teams to cav and arty units.

There are some pretty gucci postings still available for CSEs inc Cyprus and Gib. Re your family, how old are they? If they are younger than GCSE age, then get yourself to Germany etc, and let them experience life in another country. Moving isn't all bad. If you were posted to 16 or 7 you could swap to the other one so you'd spend 6 years in Elmpt... it would be possible to move to 628 Tp too, giving you a max of 9 years in one place. Stafford and Nuneaton offer you similar chances, and you could spend a career in Blandford... Or at least some war dodging fatties seem to.

If you want to stay in one place, the Navy may be an option to. You go to Sea your family stay put, and they are mainly based doon sooth. Likewise for RM. RAF still move about a fair bit, but less than the Army.
Thanks Chocolate_frog. My GF is my age, we dont have kids yet but have been talking about trying next year. We have been together 9 yrs. Sounds like CSE is a pretty good role with opportunities. Thanks for the advice.
If you haven't even got kids yet, then I'd definitly plumb for a overseas posting. My kids were born in Germany... private hospitals with the Mrs allowed to stay as long as she wants, mine stayed in for about 3 days. Much better than in UK. I can't fault the service at all. You get loads of help in the breast feeding department and of course nursing the baby in general. You get a HV to visit, as per, a medcen on camp that you can phone 24/7 and easily walk to, but perhaps more importantly due to the concentrated nature of the community, you get lots of wives in similar situations. You mrs would be older than most, but that generally doesn't really seem to matter.

You can buy a house to settle in (if you know where) and rent it out in the mean time. If you purchase one near a Signals unit then eventually you can get posted to tha tunit and live in it. Either getting out at that point or possibly going Married Unaccompanied to the next posting. I am planning on my penultimate tour to be near my house, with my last tour being MUA.

One thing though, you say she is 'girlfriend'. The Forces don't do 'Girlfriends' I am afraid. If yo udo go abroad and you want a house with her then it is either learning the German for 'I would like to rent this house' or get married. Marriage (rightly or wrongly in anyones eyes) is the only way you will get a house from the Army....
Thanks for the great advice. Sounds like a good plan. Have you been to Germany? What are the areas like where the bases are. ie in the middle of nowhere? If i went back in then i know id have to be married. We've been living together for about 7 yrs so gettin married isnt really a problem.
Im just torn which trade to go for right now. i.t is the most obvious given my background but if i was to follow what i wanted then id love to be a carpenter/Joiner and build stuff. But ive heard that once you finish training then you hardly touch your trade and its mostly combat engineering. Not that i wouldnt like that.
Can i ask what you do Chocolate_frog. Are you CSE?
Oh and my Mum and Uncle were both born on military camps. My Unc in Germany and my Mun in Hereford i think.
If you were posted to 16 or 7 you could swap to the other one so you'd spend 6 years in Elmpt... it would be possible to move to 628 Tp too, giving you a max of 9 years in one place.
SDSR has probably put the kybosh on that. Most people suspect that one or more of those units is soon going to get unplugged from the matrix.
Really? 16 has only just changed to a CSR role.

Any more info? I must have missed this. PM if you wish.
People seem to mention the CSE trade as being full of i.t geek types. Can I ask what the trade training course is like. Is it hard? I have decent i.t knowledge and experience but I'm no computer boffin by any means. Is this trade for the intellectual high flyers? I'm quite intelligent and know my way around a pc/server but some of the guys in my work are the boffin types and talk about stuff way over my head.
Chocolate.... I like the cut of your gib... fundamentally flawed but quality all the same!!!
The flaws are there to accentuate my perfection.

JuicedUK, the nickname for teh IS trade in the Signals is 'geek' however it is on a relative scale. Your work geeks in civvie strasse are probably highly qualified and specific subject matter experts. Royal Signals 'geeks' may simply know how to turn a computer on.

As long as you rock up with the required quals (isn't it Cs or above in English, Maths and a Science?) we teach you everything we want you to know. If you are succesful in reaching Blandford as a CSEngr and hold evidence of certain quals or experience it may be worth you bringing them with. You may be fast tracked or allowed to miss certain lessons. Former knowledge/experience could help you out when you hit your first unit, and could give you an edge on your peers to allow for faster promotion (providing other crieteria are also met).

On the flip side, you could turn away from the geeky darkside of the IS and turn to the masculine and soldierly lightside of the Tech. Always good to have two skillsets.
Fast track only really applies if you have ALL of the requirements. You seem to have been screwed over, but I knew two bods on class 3 who were fast forwarded, one had a degree or something or other and the other had some experience in the trade.

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