Intelligence Corps Selection

I am sighing inside, but please take this as constructive: If you think you "should" commission because you are a big cheese in your civilian job, think carefully.

Reserve INT CORPS soldiers tend to be quite well qualified, high powered and generally intellectually fairly impressive. If you think that you are more suited to the Officers Mess because you are a senior manager in civvie street you are heading for a fall.

2 questions:

1: are you interested in being an Operator Military Intelligence?
2: How much will you enjoy spending some years being IC shit jobs for the Adj and having to ring your Section Sgt come SJAR time because you've never met Cpl Smith who you notionally command but have never met because he is detached or on tour and don't know what to write?

If the answer to 1 is "yes" and 2 is "not much", you might want to reconsider your choices.

I do also account for the fact that it might hinder your civilian career to be seen as an "other rank" if so, commission into the RAF as Air INT
Not in the slightest, more the officer role I wish to aim to is linked to what I currently do. I am not a senior manager, far from it. Starting my civilian career and wishing to add more value to it.

1. No I am not interested in being an Operator Military Intelligence.

2. I do not have any issue with shit jobs, getting stuck in and quite frankly standing my ground. I had been asking for advice in re to the application process.

I can assure you that this would not hinder my civilian job, it is quite common for individuals in my role to be ex military, be current reserves etc.

I thank you for your input.
 
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I actually agree with this advice.
Thankyou! So kind.

My many years of dealing with exactly this issue is validated by your approval.
 
Guess see what fits for yourself. If you apply answer all the general questions they should then put you in touch with your unit (although sure you could contact your local unit yourself if you wished). If you have glasses I’d look at getting a recent optometrist report for selection also. You’ll need to provide medical information etc. before hand as well. In regards to fitness for selection, Id focus on the run mainly. The medicine ball throw and mid thigh pull are really not hard. The team tasks & grenade throw also are fine & not a pass/fail scenario. In honesty I found the selection more relaxed than I thought. The hardest part was acting as if I knew what 20 odd year old lads were talking about when Im an ageing 32 year old. There was a few of us oldies there.

However I think basic training will be a different story.

best of luck with your application
Thank you, I really appreciate your help. I shall have some more discussions, and get in touch with recruitment and see where they will best put me too!
I had thought about joining at solider level, for the exact reasons you said - that’s why I said we will see, in terms of where I am best suited

haha, I don’t think even 20 year old lads actually understand themselves! (Being in my 20s myself!)

thank you, I wish you the best of luck too!
 
Not in the slightest, more the officer role I wish to aim to is linked to what I currently do. I am not a senior manager, far from it. Starting my civilian career and wishing to add more value to it.

1. No I am not interested in being an Operative Military Intelligence.

2. I do not have any issue with shit jobs, getting stuck in and quite frankly standing my ground. I had been asking for advice in re to the application process.

I can assure you that this would not hinder my civilian job, it is quite common for individuals in my role to be ex military, be current reserves etc.

I thank you for your input.
OK.

So you don't want to do intelligence, operationally. Why do you want to join the INT Corps?
 
Again, I reiterate that I am trying to be constructive but you have posted this in the INT Corps forum.

The application process is generic and there are plenty of threads about this - here for example https://www.arrse.co.uk/community/forums/join-the-army-reserve-recruitment.96/

If you don't want specific advice about the INT Corps fine. Don't post here. Frankly, your attitude has pissed me off anyway and I've changed my mind - born DE officer.

MODs: one for locking, please?
 
Again, I reiterate that I am trying to be constructive but you have posted this in the INT Corps forum.

The application process is generic and there are plenty of threads about this - here for example https://www.arrse.co.uk/community/forums/join-the-army-reserve-recruitment.96/

If you don't want specific advice about the INT Corps fine. Don't post here. Frankly, your attitude has pissed me off anyway and I've changed my mind - born DE officer.

MODs: one for locking, please?
I know this, and I am interested in the Int Corps (but not as an Operator Military Intelligence) - you say you are being constructive yet starting with “I am sighing” is not constructive. And assuming I think that I am a “big cheese” in my current civilian role, also not. But thank you for your feedback.

Thank you for sending the link to that thread, I am new to this forum and I am still navigating.

No problem.
 
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I know this, and I am interested in the Int Corps (but not as an Operator Military Intelligence) - you say you are being constructive yet starting with “I am sighing” is not constructive. And assuming I think that I am a “big cheese” in my current civilian role, also not. But thank you for your feedback.

Thank you for sending the link to that thread, I am new to this forum and I am still navigating.

No problem.
I am not assuming anything; however, the reason for my metaphorical sigh is that I have had this conversation many many times over the years. Invariably the logic behind young men and women's aspirations for commissioning are based on a fundamental miss-understanding of what the role entails. I have tried to help you with this from a position of experience but you don't seem to want to take the advice.

If you want to commission because, for whatever reason, you believe you should, then join the Infantry. You will genuinely learn to command.

If you want to learn to be an intelligencer, either become a regular officer (if you want to take your time over it) or a regular / reserve soldier if you want to apply those skills in real life. The fact that you have said you don't understandably makes me question your decisions.

That's it from me. take it or leave it.
 

Crow22

Swinger
Hi Guys,

Sorry for posting on this thread, it seemed the most relevant place to ask a question about Int Corps selection without starting a whole new thread. I'm going for a position with the Int Corps, and I understand that as part of the selection process you have to write an essay/report. Is this a skill anyone would recommend practising? If so, any recommendations on how?

I never attended University, so may not have as much report writing experience as other applicants, and want to make sure I don't miss out on anything by a small margin. Appreciate the help in advance.
 

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
Hi Guys,

Sorry for posting on this thread, it seemed the most relevant place to ask a question about Int Corps selection without starting a whole new thread. I'm going for a position with the Int Corps, and I understand that as part of the selection process you have to write an essay/report. Is this a skill anyone would recommend practising? If so, any recommendations on how?

I never attended University, so may not have as much report writing experience as other applicants, and want to make sure I don't miss out on anything by a small margin. Appreciate the help in advance.
Writing any sort of essay or report is fairly straightforward, provided you can spell and write halfway decent standard English. The secret's in the thinking before you write a damn thing and then using a logical structure.

For an essay or a think piece, I usually have a good idea of what I want to convey - the idea, conclusion or plan which answers the exam question. If you don't have an exam question supplied, spend a little bit more time articulating one to yourself and then composing the answer.

Then take the three-part approach:

  • Introduction
    • Explain the reason for the essay or think piece and define the question you're going to answer.
  • Narrative
    • Discuss the question and potential answers to it.
  • Conclusion
    • In a short, wrap-up summary, precis the introduction and provide the answer you've chosen with some reasoning as to why you went for it.

That's the easiest way to do it. There are lots of wrinkles and tips, of course - and it's worth while looking at things like the 7 Questions or the old 'appreciation' process, but for the deliverable, you won't go far wrong with a logical, well-argued 3-parter.
 
Second @Glad_its_all_over 's points; the intention of anyone demanding that you write such an essay is that you explain your grasp of the subject (the whole of the point, really), your reasons for arguing your position (Part 2, the main body) and your view of the essential elements of Part 2 which comprise the conclusions you come to. Try to be quick in your thought processes here.

Your intention is to come to the very best answer to what may be a ridiculously variable question.

Think - really; think -before you write; if necessary, jot a few headings down and work from them - but not slavishly - ideas will come as you write. The writing should be a short part of the process (and think about that, now).

Arrive at a set of logical conclusions that you can justify when some git interrogates you about them later. Difficult, but always have the 'I've had time to think now, but/and in retrospect I feel...' response to the git.

Collect a Gold Star.

That Senior Medical Officer (Whitty?) has done this daily for four months on television; he's been very good at it; logical, precise and without any associated bullshit. A very good example.

(Mind you, I mostly bullshitted any essay of this type I ever wrote. I found that the most successful route.)
 

Buddy!

War Hero
Hi Guys,

Sorry for posting on this thread, it seemed the most relevant place to ask a question about Int Corps selection without starting a whole new thread. I'm going for a position with the Int Corps, and I understand that as part of the selection process you have to write an essay/report. Is this a skill anyone would recommend practising? If so, any recommendations on how?

I never attended University, so may not have as much report writing experience as other applicants, and want to make sure I don't miss out on anything by a small margin. Appreciate the help in advance.
Some sound advice on here in relation to your Q. There are also thousands of resources to assist with this online, that are just a short Google* search away.

Good luck.

*Other search engines available
 
Writing any sort of essay or report is fairly straightforward, provided you can spell and write halfway decent standard English. The secret's in the thinking before you write a damn thing and then using a logical structure.

For an essay or a think piece, I usually have a good idea of what I want to convey - the idea, conclusion or plan which answers the exam question. If you don't have an exam question supplied, spend a little bit more time articulating one to yourself and then composing the answer.

Then take the three-part approach:

  • Introduction
    • Explain the reason for the essay or think piece and define the question you're going to answer.
  • Narrative
    • Discuss the question and potential answers to it.
  • Conclusion
    • In a short, wrap-up summary, precis the introduction and provide the answer you've chosen with some reasoning as to why you went for it.

That's the easiest way to do it. There are lots of wrinkles and tips, of course - and it's worth while looking at things like the 7 Questions or the old 'appreciation' process, but for the deliverable, you won't go far wrong with a logical, well-argued 3-parter.
If you are writing an essay you will most likely be given a small book like you have for school exams. About 8 pages with a front piece for name candidate number etc. Open it. Use the first page to spend 5 minutes per hour of the test to write your plan. Headings, notes, pictures whatever. Follow this plan as you write and when to finish or get the two minute warning, put one line diagonally through the plan. Trust me, this works. When I sat my LE Commission board the Colonel told me after that I was the only person who wrote out a plan and my mark was one of the highest ever seen. It works and I taught officers and NCOs to do it.
 

jrwlynch

LE
Book Reviewer
If you are writing an essay you will most likely be given a small book like you have for school exams. About 8 pages with a front piece for name candidate number etc. Open it. Use the first page to spend 5 minutes per hour of the test to write your plan. Headings, notes, pictures whatever. Follow this plan as you write and when to finish or get the two minute warning, put one line diagonally through the plan. Trust me, this works. When I sat my LE Commission board the Colonel told me after that I was the only person who wrote out a plan and my mark was one of the highest ever seen. It works and I taught officers and NCOs to do it.
This is almost exactly what Mr Bailey, my teacher for O-level World History, taught us from 1984 to 1986. I did what he said (as well as paying attention in class) and got an A, back when an 'A' was hard to get, not like these young whippersnappers today...

I used the same technique at my Territorial Commissioning Board in 1996. Failed that one, but was complimented on how well I'd smashed the written tests and exam, it was my leadership exercise that had let me down.

Same technique again for Admiralty Interview Board in 2008, and that went well enough that I just got my VRSM delivered for ten years of undetected crime...

Remember the simple rule: the introduction is where you say "this is what I'm going to tell you". The main body is where you make the case and argue... whatever you've decided to argue. (It's not about finding a "right" answer, it's about making a clear case for why what you're saying is correct; from memory one of my AIB essays was about having a unified "UK Armed Force" and I attacked it based on the Canadian experience. Another candidate supported it as a great idea. We both passed.) The summary wraps up "this is what I've told you".

Scrawl out the plan and your thoughts, show that you understood a structured essay and that you didn't just bang out a few hundred words of stream-of-consciousness. It helps the examiner see what you intended to do, which makes it easier for them to give you marks and justify why they did so.

The DS assessing you want to find and pass good candidates. I know, I've ended up doing this internally for my own unit's selection procedure. Give them evidence to show why you can look at a question, and work out how to write a few hundred words answering it in a customary and effective format, to be one of those "good candidates". Don't worry too much about "not having gone to university", it matters much less than you'd think.

On a purely practical point of view? Practice writing longhand and find what sort of pen suits you. I came up on the cusp of the personal computer, and discovered the hard way in 2001 (first paper exam for a work-funded MSc) that a three-hour written exam was actually downright painful for someone who'd spent a decade typing everything on a keyboard, when using a cheap "here's your pen" biro. The second exam, I turned up with a fresh pack of Pilot Rollerballs from a Tottenham Court Road branch of Ryman's... I passed both but the second didn't leave my writing hand cramping up for hours afterwards.

"
 
This is almost exactly what Mr Bailey, my teacher for O-level World History, taught us from 1984 to 1986. I did what he said (as well as paying attention in class) and got an A, back when an 'A' was hard to get, not like these young whippersnappers today...

I used the same technique at my Territorial Commissioning Board in 1996. Failed that one, but was complimented on how well I'd smashed the written tests and exam, it was my leadership exercise that had let me down.

Same technique again for Admiralty Interview Board in 2008, and that went well enough that I just got my VRSM delivered for ten years of undetected crime...

Remember the simple rule: the introduction is where you say "this is what I'm going to tell you". The main body is where you make the case and argue... whatever you've decided to argue. (It's not about finding a "right" answer, it's about making a clear case for why what you're saying is correct; from memory one of my AIB essays was about having a unified "UK Armed Force" and I attacked it based on the Canadian experience. Another candidate supported it as a great idea. We both passed.) The summary wraps up "this is what I've told you".

Scrawl out the plan and your thoughts, show that you understood a structured essay and that you didn't just bang out a few hundred words of stream-of-consciousness. It helps the examiner see what you intended to do, which makes it easier for them to give you marks and justify why they did so.

The DS assessing you want to find and pass good candidates. I know, I've ended up doing this internally for my own unit's selection procedure. Give them evidence to show why you can look at a question, and work out how to write a few hundred words answering it in a customary and effective format, to be one of those "good candidates". Don't worry too much about "not having gone to university", it matters much less than you'd think.

On a purely practical point of view? Practice writing longhand and find what sort of pen suits you. I came up on the cusp of the personal computer, and discovered the hard way in 2001 (first paper exam for a work-funded MSc) that a three-hour written exam was actually downright painful for someone who'd spent a decade typing everything on a keyboard, when using a cheap "here's your pen" biro. The second exam, I turned up with a fresh pack of Pilot Rollerballs from a Tottenham Court Road branch of Ryman's... I passed both but the second didn't leave my writing hand cramping up for hours afterwards."
Rather like the convolutions that (the fictional) Jack Aubrey went through in the 19th century. In the commercial world, a phone call now suffices, at the last interview, on top of a CV and fight/promise of love, steak and chips with the admin clerk to get ones' CV into the pile. Doing the final phone call with the VP when he asks a 'difficult' question while he's walking through Toronto airport to the background of the Rolling Stones can be challenging, but very much a 'communications' exercise,

In my own experience, asking a candidate to write an essay has never been part of the final selection process much at all below middle-management level, (that's outside of state-sponsored recruitment, of course) as being capable of writing florid prose has never really been much of the requirement; straight structural reporting is all that's needed. At higher levels, the same, but with more evidentially-based opinion.

Much more important has been the content of the delivered information/direction, and the clarity and precision of the means of delivery. I suppose that an essay, sent in slow time can do that, but I know which I prefer. But, if they want it, you gotta do it.
 

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
Rather like the convolutions that (the fictional) Jack Aubrey went through in the 19th century. In the commercial world, a phone call now suffices, at the last interview, on top of a CV and fight/promise of love, steak and chips with the admin clerk to get ones' CV into the pile. Doing the final phone call with the VP when he asks a 'difficult' question while he's walking through Toronto airport to the background of the Rolling Stones can be challenging, but very much a 'communications' exercise,

In my own experience, asking a candidate to write an essay has never been part of the final selection process much at all below middle-management level, (that's outside of state-sponsored recruitment, of course) as being capable of writing florid prose has never really been much of the requirement; straight structural reporting is all that's needed. At higher levels, the same, but with more evidentially-based opinion.

Much more important has been the content of the delivered information/direction, and the clarity and precision of the means of delivery. I suppose that an essay, sent in slow time can do that, but I know which I prefer. But, if they want it, you gotta do it.
Yeah, my experience of the big company commercial world suggests very strongly that, while you're welcome to write as many essays, papers and Notes for File as you like, no-one's ever going to read them and you need to get your message across through the rich media of Powerpoint and Excel.
 
Yeah, my experience of the big company commercial world suggests very strongly that, while you're welcome to write as many essays, papers and Notes for File as you like, no-one's ever going to read them and you need to get your message across through the rich media of Powerpoint and Excel.
In fairness, writing a decent PowerPoint presentation follows broadly similar principles to writing an essay. The difference being that the PowerPoint is essentially guided speaking notes, while the essay requires all the points to be written down. Nothing worse than watching some clown read every point on a slide and nothing to it. The presentation allows for a point to be illustrated with a picture or graph to allow the reader to visualize a point being made.

The problem with them is that they don’t form a permanent record of what was presented, the presenter could amplify say “Middle East” as “well, by that I really mean Saudi Arabia and the UAE, I am less concerned here with Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, Syria and the others”. An essay however would have to spell it out.

Both essays and Powerpoints have uses.
 

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
In fairness, writing a decent PowerPoint presentation follows broadly similar principles to writing an essay. The difference being that the PowerPoint is essentially guided speaking notes, while the essay requires all the points to be written down. Nothing worse than watching some clown read every point on a slide and nothing to it. The presentation allows for a point to be illustrated with a picture or graph to allow the reader to visualize a point being made.

The problem with them is that they don’t form a permanent record of what was presented, the presenter could amplify say “Middle East” as “well, by that I really mean Saudi Arabia and the UAE, I am less concerned here with Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, Syria and the others”. An essay however would have to spell it out.

Both essays and Powerpoints have uses.
They do and I'm a firm believer in stark, simple Powerpoint, with a few bullet points, to accompany a speech or brief - with notes as well for the take-aways.

What I've seen emerging is PPTs used as primary information delivery tools, where a PPT is sent around as the only record of a decision or a discussion which took place offline with no minutes or notes.

I caused a near revolution with one employer, a large US-based mutinational, by producing minutes after a meeting which made it clear who'd decided what. Made a lot of people very uncomfortable.
 
I caused a near revolution with one employer, a large US-based mutinational, by producing minutes after a meeting which made it clear who'd decided what. Made a lot of people very uncomfortable.
Yeah, the look you get when you suggest that six or seven words in a cell of an Excel spreadsheet (or a bullet point on a single slide), is not actually an unambiguous statement of requirements... but it is a suspiciously convenient get-out clause for middle-managers to insist "that's not what we meant", as soon as it suits them.

...I had a weasel of a supervisor who wiped my documentation for our old toolchain as soon as we stopped work on it, because any comparison showed how appallingly bad the (lack of) documentation was for our new toolchain.
 

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