HCDC report - Recruitment and Retention

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by hackle, Jul 29, 2008.

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  1. Index to the report, to give you an idea of what it covers:

    Defence - Fourteenth Report


    Terms of Reference


    1 Introduction

    Scope of the inquiry
    Previous work by the Committee

    Previous work by other organisations

    Conduct of the inquiry

    Web forum
    2 Recruitment and Retention overview

    Defence Planning Assumptions
    Assessing recruitment and retention performance

    Recruitment targets
    Gains to the trained strength

    Manning balance

    Voluntary outflow

    Harmony Guidelines

    Pinchpoint trades

    Assessing Armed Forces responsiveness

    Peacetime readiness levels
    Ability to generate from peacetime readiness to immediate readiness

    Ability to deploy, sustain and recover force elements

    3 Recruitment

    A broad based approach

    Engaging with the public
    Working with schools to raise awareness of the Armed Forces



    Recruiting environment

    Recruiting diversity
    Recruiting campaigns and resources

    Recruiting and schools

    Educational incentives


    4 Retention

    Regular Forces' retention challenges: conditions of service and welfare

    Impact on family and personal life
    Welfare provision


    Pay and allowances

    Regular Forces retention challenges: organisational and structural issues

    Single Service parity
    Retirement age


    Efficiency and Change programmes

    Volunteer Reserve Forces retention challenges

    Supporting Volunteer Reservists

    The role of employers

    The Military Covenant

    Representing Armed Forces Personnel

    Conclusions and recommendations

    Annex A: List of Abbreviations

    Annex B: The Committee's web forum

    Formal minutes


    List of written evidence

    List of Reports from the Committee during the current Parliament

    Oral and Written Evidence

    Tuesday 25 March 2008

    Tuesday 1 April 2008

    Tuesday 22 April 2008

    Tuesday 20 May 2008

    Written Evidence
  2. Good one.
    We have listened carefully to the arguments both for and against an Armed Forces Federation. We are open-minded about the benefits of such a Federation, but we are concerned that the MoD is not. We recommend that the MoD considers more constructively the possible benefits which may be gained from an independent Armed Forces Federation, and encourage the MoD to consult with the British Armed Forces Federation.
  3. DIN 2007DIN03-006 again! From the 20 May evidence session

  4. "The report recommended that the MoD consider "more constructively" an independent Armed Forces Federation that would voice soldiers' concerns."

    From the Daily Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/onthefrontline/2470212/Armed-Forces-exodus-'endangers-troops'-lives'.html
  5. I always think the main intellectual problem with the subject of 'recruitment and retention' is that they are always grouped together; and treated as part of the same equation. I suggest we all recognise that what gets someone into the Army is not necessarily the same thing that keeps them in!

    And in other news, 27 Commanding Officers have resigned their commissions this year alone...
  6. 27 Commanding Officers to date this year? Source would be appreciated - if only to encourage the less gifted to hang on in there on the off chance.......
  7. Rickshaw, do you mean some sort of weblink: if so, these aren't the sorts of figures that are readily available that way.

    But I can assure you that they are completely accurate.
  8. Precisely.

    Retention is the prime issue, and Recruitment is failing to bridge the gap. Worse, if we cannot Retain we lose ability and, crucially, real experience. Even with the best training in the world (and have we not heard that 'training' is to be 'outsourced' and reduced wholesale?) there is no substitute for experience.

    There's no quick fix for this. You cannot acquire experience except through the passage of time. The increasing loss of junior and senior NCOs and regimental level officers is disastrous. It also places those on active service in even greater danger.
  9. Recruitment and retention are not separate issues. The aim of both is the same: to reach a deal where the both sides see value in committing to each other. The reason that value on both sides is created changes over time.

    Failures in both are symtomatic problems, not the cause. The reasons for poor retention will be the same as for poor recruitment.
  10. No they aren't, and mercifully even our policy is a little more joined up than this.

    By way of explanation:

    Young Johnny (why is it always 'Johnny'?) is considering the Army i.e. we wish to recruit him. However, his perception (and his Mum's more pertinently) is that we are fighting 'immoral' and unwanted wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and anyway, all the kit is crap and when soldiers are injured, they are ignored completely by all and sundry. And everyone knows that bullying is rife and it's only a matter of time before young Johhny winds up dead having 'shot himself' on stag at some ghastly camp somewhere. And so on.

    Maj Smithson-Smithson, on the other hand, has served 18 years all up. He joined as a Junior Paratrooper (the proper version!) and commissioned from the ranks as a Cpl. He has served with Conventional and Special Forces. He currently sits within the top 10% of his peer group and will - on projection - promote early to Lt Col. Frankly, he's a little cheesed off with the way he perceives the Army to be going and is likely to jump ship at his IPP and therefore we are seeking to retain him.

    I suggest that these 2 highly representative vignettes require very different solutions: one is actually about influencing gatekeeper perception, the other is examining the moral contract the individual has. If any similarities exist in a theoretical solution, they are coincidental at best.
  11. The symtoms are different. The cause is the same: Neither see any value in joining or staying.
  12. I guess you're advocating an examination of the motivations (de-motivations?) of those who leave. I'd certainly agree with that. However any decent attitude survey should reveal exactly the same information - prior to individuals making their decisions to leave, for whatever their reasons. But I'd suggest that current MoD surveys are biased in that respect (deliberately or otherwise) and do not provide hard evidence of such reasons. If such MoD surveys do accurately paint the picture then it's clear that a political choice has been made by those responsible for Retention.
  13. Proximo, apologies my previous post was a bit obtuse. My point is that R&R is a bit like obesity. There are many different illnesses resulting from it, but the root cause is that people eat too much. Which do you tackle? The symptoms or the cause? Ideally both, however short-term retention "incentives" etc are far easier to implement than the generally costly and long term institutional changes of attitude required to solve the problem.
  14. msr

    msr LE

    More like Obesity and Mental Illness: two totally separate subjects, which need to be addressed in different ways.