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let's send combat trades out to other corps/regts

Is it time to make combat trades obsolete?

  • with all this digitisation, no need for them

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • they still are the backbone of the Corps

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Who the fekk will do stags/pan bash if they go?

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • no, they make the rest of us look good

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    0
E

ex-dvr

Guest
#1
Is it time to send all combat trades out to other arms/and/or regiments and the corps take on an advisory type role, only needed at HQ's?

Now this is not a slagging off, i am an ex cbt trade, but the corps thread seems full of tech's and pc nerds transfering in! not a slagging off of them trades either!

I have been out probably longer than the majority of the serving corps has been in. and to be honest dont have a clue about these new trades/roles that are going on.
so just curious
 
#3
Hmm Ex Dvr dont let the smack talk of the IS Ops bring you down. The Corp on the whole IMO is doing just fine. Trade banter is still as strong if not stronger as ever especially with the new IS Ops taking flack away from the Techs.

As for farming out Lineys, NO WAY they are a great asset often overlooked. The problem with the MT/Line is down to attitudes. They changed the name from Driver Lineman to Driver and becuase of a few "im a driver" problems it is now back to Driver Lineman. The transition of the TeleMech to Inst Tech as a field replacement/enhancement failed. Lineys despite their "thick as 2 short planks" image work well with other trades and are eager to assist on many comms fits on deployed Ops.

What Sigs units need to do is rotate Lineman more and stop letting them sit in MT`s all their career. This breeds "blinkered" Lineman.

Overall a good bunch of guys and gals. Always grafting oh and getting wasted on beer resulting in many a lagged sleeping bag.

:twisted:
 
#4
Disco said:
As for farming out Lineys, NO WAY .

:twisted:
Agreed we have a bunch in 16 Sigs run by an excellent team (fudge and his gang) a Bl**dy good bunch really helpful AND know their business.

But I have to say ....... wireless .........
 
#5
Sorry

Do not think that the change over to RLC clerks worked well at all. It was ok whilst they posted ex Royal Sigs clerks to Royal Sigs units but then it fell apart when they just posted any old clerk in.

Each Corps, Arm is different. They work slightly differently, they do slightly different things. Bloody annoying but it is part of our make up.

At least the Combat Trade has been trained in Basic Signaling and has some idea.
 
#6
GP3_Bunny said:
[
But I have to say ....... wireless .........
Fudges gang, they are mostly InstTechs, but as I said there are plenty of good lineys who get involved.

As for wireless, believe it when I see it. :roll:
 
#7
Disco said:
As for farming out Lineys, NO WAY they are a great asset often overlooked.

The transition of the TeleMech to Inst Tech as a field replacement/enhancement failed.

What Sigs units need to do is rotate Lineman more and stop letting them sit in MT`s all their career. This breeds "blinkered" Lineman.
Bull - R SIGNALS Drivers are just that...drivers. They are a G4 Logistics asset, just like our Tech Sup Specs. They are effectively mini-RLC detachments. Agreed they provide a sizeable proportion of the RD roster and are sound lads and lasses, but that's no reason to keep on a dying trade.

The liney's old comms wire is dead in the water. Nearly all new comms fits are now using fibre, which needs the Inst Techs to prep and install. The sensible lineys saw the train coming and jumped on, the rest are fumbling around as trg instrs, RP staff or doing driving details forever.

Disco - you say rotate these guys, but to where? I know they can lay line in some units but those places are diminshing rapidly.

In civvy street, it's called outsourcing. You keep your core business and farm out the jobs which can be managed more effectively and more cost effectively by other organisations i.e. the RLC.

Advantages of outsourcing the drivers and storemen are that they can have a career as drivers and storemen. If not, they are damned into a life of NBC, Fire NCO, skillies, RP staff, Map reading instrs, PTIs and if they're lucky Tp Sgts, Tp Staffies and hopefully
RD WOs. Notice that there's no mention of driving or storekeeping there?!

At least in the RLC they can have a full 22yr-career without constant friction between the techs and comms-wallahs (and now IS geeks). How many of them were told that they would only be able to do the trade for a couple of years then become pseudo-infanteers?

For their own sake, let's practice some tough love!

PD

Now, I'm not being funny here, but the only problem is that if they went, the RD roster would have to be filled from somewhere. Perhaps that would mean that people who are currently not good enough would instead become our future RSMs and QMs.
 

DangerMouse

Old-Salt
Moderator
#8
If we no longer retain, for example, chefs and clerks under R SIGNALS auspices, then why not also devolve storemen and drivers, too? If our core function is CIS, then why not focus on that?
 
#9
DangerMouse said:
If we no longer retain, for example, chefs and clerks under R SIGNALS auspices, then why not also devolve storemen and drivers, too? If our core function is CIS, then why not focus on that?
Hear hear. Let's outsource the G4 trades asap.
More tech weeners can be RSM then :wink:
 
#10
If we get rid of our G4 functions then we would lose all 'Techs' and FoS to the REME alond with all Ed's as well. If you get the chance to visit a REME Battalion and ask to visit Optronics Platoon, you would see that the functions and procedures are identical to those in our TM troops, however the REME Tels Techs repair to a further level down to our 'Techs'. Anyway when our techs can't fix kit it will be 1045'd to the REME to fix.

Why do some major units employ the ED's in the GRS within the LAD?

Answer - Because that is where they belong.

First bit of common i've heard from Dangermouse for a while.

Later

Happy in Elmpt
 
#11
Could be a slippery slide to the eradication of the Corps.

1. RLC has Rad Ops, any difference to our RadSys Ops that a little training would not cover?? Transfer them.

2. Techs..gone.

3. Combat trades gone.

4. Spec Ops...Int Corps beckons as it is.

5. AreaSys Ops...Who wants them. Civil Service could cover most of their roles.

Well what is left, Officers and IS Ops. Not enough for a Corps to stand. Bearing in mind that there are people doing IS jobs throughout the Army and not in the trade.

Conclusion...why have the Royal Signals?

Or am I just being pedantic?

Be careful of what you ask.
 
#16
I think a good start is farming out life support to RLC - similar to the ARRC. when this is done I also think that we would have to look at Dvr and Stores, as to be honest, would they not be better served in another corps where they can reach WO1 in trade rather than having to work on essentially secondary duties?

As for mannng Trg Wings or SSM posts, could this not be E2 and filled by Inf? Does the SSM really need to be R Signals?
 
#17
Redshaggydog said:
1. RLC has Rad Ops, any difference to our RadSys Ops that a little training would not cover?? Transfer them.
No...if their trade is purely communications then they should be RSIGNALS RS Ops. It goes both ways. 8)

Also more rear link dets, as Bowman comes in.

PD
 
#18
PoisonDwarf

No...if their trade is purely communications then they should be RSIGNALS RS Ops. It goes both ways.
Would that also mean the Engineer Radio Ops! If you are going to shred trades where do you stop. As I have pointed out all our trades could be merged into the RLC, why just Combat Trades?

bullshit

As for mannng Trg Wings or SSM posts, could this not be E2 and filled by Inf? Does the SSM really need to be R Signals?
Can not believe that you wrote that. What happens when you get to SSgt and do not want to go Supervisor/Foreman/Yoeman etc!
 

DangerMouse

Old-Salt
Moderator
#20
COatELMPT said:
If we get rid of our G4 functions then we would lose all Techs and FoS to the REME alond with all EDs as well. If you get the chance to visit a REME Battalion and ask to visit Optronics Platoon, you would see that the functions and procedures are identical to those in our TM troops, however the REME Tels Techs repair to a further level down to our Techs. Anyway when our techs can't fix kit it will be 1045'd to the REME to fix.

Why do some major units employ the EDs in the GRS within the LAD?
Answer - Because that is where they belong.
...
A number of trades fall in to the 'G4 and suitable for transfer' category. COatELMPT has highlighted what is probably the most contentious - that of Technicians. If one can make an argument in favour of devolving those to another, more appropriate, 'core cap-badge' - in this case, REME - then I suggest that the arguments naturally follows for devolving storemen and drivers to the RLC. As a brief case study therefore, I propose looking at the case for retaining Technicians.

There have reportedly been discussions at SOinC(A)-level recently to remove the Technician trade and replace it with operators with enhanced training and basic fault-finding and repair ability. COatELMPT's posting highlights existing redundancies in inter-Corps capabilities, and should Technicians be replaced by an amalgamated and less specialised variant of the operator trade then the present functionality would be retained by the Army, merely rationalised within REME. Many other cap-badges used to have their own dedicated ES trades, in the same way that we once had chefs and clerks wearing R SIGNALS capbadges. Initial attempts between the two world wars to rationalise ES responsibility were vetoed by cap-badge vested interests:

"Many efforts were made between the two World Wars to introduce a centralised and more efficient repair organisation which could deal with all technical equipment. Unfortunately most of these attempts failed either on the grounds of initial expense or because of esprit-de-corps and a strong reluctance on the part of the various arms and services to accept any change that might conceivably weaken their self-reliance.
(my emphasis)

The imperatives of World War II subsequently overrode parochial cap-badge self-interests:

"Rearmament and the mechanisation of the Army followed by the outbreak of the Second World War led to further considerable increases in the quantity and complexity of technical equipment. The consequent heavy repair load revealed the weakness of the existing organisation, while the shortage of qualified tradesmen in the Services soon dictated a need for a system which would use the available men more effectively."
This led to the formation of the REME, integrating personnel previously wearing a variety of capbadges. This process continued after World War II:

"...equipment was becoming even more complex and the time was clearly ripe for further rationalisation of the systems of repair so as to eliminate waste and to make best use of the technical skill available."
REME's remit expanded in the post war years, and now encompasses ES responsibility across the Army. The exception, is the anomaly of telecommunications equipment. This is a legacy from almost forty years ago:

1966. REME took over the unit repair of all telecommunications equipment other than that owned and operated by R Signals (on the recommendation of the Odling Committee)...
Why was the decision made in 1966 by the Odling Committee to exempt R SIGNALS owned and operations telecommunications equipment from REME's sphere of responsibility? I don't know the answer, but I suspect that R SIGNALS cap-badge self-interest, and the - at the time - perhaps uniquely complex nature of such equipment, may have weighted in R SIGNALS' favour. Outraged howls, of the like seen thus far in this forum, from those questioning the future of R SIGNALS G4 trades should be curtailed in favour of a detailed examination of the rationale behind, what was at the time, a staffed and justified O&D decision. What is certain, however, is that the reason we have Technicians is due to a decision made almost 40 years ago. That the service has changed in that time to such an extent that a reevaluation is legitimate, and even necessary, should hardly be contentious. This argument extends logically to other trades such as storemen and drivers.

Speaking of the aforementioned 'outraged howls'...

Redshaggydog said:
Could be a slippery slide to the eradication of the Corps.

1. RLC has Rad Ops, any difference to our RadSys Ops that a little training would not cover?? Transfer them.
2. Techs..gone.
3. Combat trades gone.
4. Spec Ops...Int Corps beckons as it is.
5. AreaSys Ops...Who wants them. Civil Service could cover most of their roles.

Well what is left, Officers and IS Ops. Not enough for a Corps to stand. Bearing in mind that there are people doing IS jobs throughout the Army and not in the trade.

Conclusion...why have the Royal Signals? Or am I just being pedantic? Be careful of what you ask.
Stage One. Mission Analysis.

R SIGNALS MISSION

The R SIGNALS is responsible for the provision of CIS and EW to support land operations. Its mission statement is:

“To provide communications infrastructure in the land environment, robust communications and information systems in support of operations, and to conduct tactical electronic warfare in order to win the information battle for the commander.”

R SIGNALS TASKS:

R SIGNALS is responsible for field CIS within deployable land formations, that is, between and within formation HQs and down to unit level. In other circumstances, for instance in Peace Support Operations and MACA, this responsibility can extend down to patrol level. The tasks of R SIGNALS are:

a. The provision of CIS for field formations and some static HQs, and CIS advice to commanders and staff.
b. The provision of tactical EW, and advice to commanders and the staff.
c. The deployment, administration and close defence of division and brigade field HQs.
d. The provision of HF and satellite rear link communications to deployed combined, joint and Land Component HQs based on land.
e. The co-ordination and technical supervision of all Army communications including advice to all Arms and Services on communications, operational CIS, communications security and training.
f. The provision of communications support to RAF Support Helicopters (SH).
g. The provision of certain communications for the RN and RAF overseas as well as for other government departments (OGD).
h. Electro-magnetic spectrum management and liaison with civilian communications agencies within a theatre of operations.
i. The provision of communications for the Press, if appropriate, from an operational area.
Stage Two. Consideration of Factors.

To deal with your points in order:

1. Rad Ops. Rad Ops within units are there to provide comms within their units. That is a unit responsibility; that of the R SIGNALS is to provide comms at brigade level and above. There is no suggestion, no has there ever been, that Regimental Signallers/Rad Ops subsume R SIGNALS functionality. (Incidentally, I understand that the only exception to this 'CIS only above Bde' guideline is 16 Air Asslt Bde, where 16 Air Asslt Bde HQ and Sig Sqn (216) retain the capability to deploy Rear Link Detachments to the Bde's subordinate units. I am led to believe that this is due to the unique requirements of Air Manoeuvre operations. (Further information: Land Component Handbook, Doctrinal Notes, Doctrinal Note 00/2, Air Manoeuvre, pages 00/2-1 to 00/2-G-1.

2. Techs. See the remarks with which I opened this post.

3. 'Combat Trades'See previous remarks. Incidentally, I am of the understanding the term 'Combat trades', was an archaic legacy for recruitment purposes, and that it has been replaced by the more honest term 'Communications Logistics Group'. I thought I read that in latest shiny R SIGNALS recruiting brochure, but not having it to hand I can’t reference it, sorry.

4. Spec Ops. If detailed study indicates that it is in the Army's best interests (note: Army's, not R SIGNALS or INT CORPS') to rationalise EW responsibility to the INT CORPS, thus freeing R SIGNALS to concentrate on its core CIS tasks, then so be it. Note that only one of the tasks listed above is EW, and that seven of the remaining eight focus on the responsibility for provision of CIS.

5. AS Ops. There is[i/], I suggest, a question to be answered as to whether the strict delineation between AS Ops, RS Ops and IS Ops best serves the Corps' needs in to the NEC-based, DS2/3-enabled Army that is required by the Future Land Operational Concept (FLOC) (Further information: FLOC paper published by DGD&D, Sep 03. I believe that there is a case for an amalgamation of AS and RS Ops trades, and for the current skills of IS Ops to increasingly move to the fore, and permeate all other trades within the Corps - hopefully even, and this is being really optimistic, its officers.

Stage Three. Courses of Action.

Every task in the above list, bar two, focuses on the provision of CIS. It is legitimate that elements of the Corps that do not directly contribute to those tasks ought to be reviewed, and consideration given to their devolvement to other parts of the Army, allowing us to concentrate on our core expertise - CIS. There ought to be no 'sacred cows'. I suggest therefore that there are a number of logical courses of action, including devolving Techs, Drivers, and Storemen.

Stage Four. Summary.

Personally, I feel very comfortable about the prospect of serving in a Corps which has devolved its G4 functions, and associated manpower, to the RLC and REME, and its EW functions, and associated manpower, to the INT CORPS. I would go further and suggest that task b, The deployment, administration and close defence of division and brigade field HQs. is inappropriate for an organisation which aspires to exclusively recruit and train intelligent, IT-literate, highly-skilled professional CIS engineers. I suggest that the examples of ARRC and 264 Sig Sqn should be used as role models (ARRC Sp Bn, and 22's HQ Sqn providing the 'jif jobs'/labour support tasks for their respective HQs - relieving highly trained R SIGNALS soldiers of that responsibility). This unfortunately, I suspect, will only happen if our leaders and masters are prepared to forfeit the nebulous 'influence' which they currently feel that the 'life support' function gives them with the staff. (Hopefully our more visionary senior officers will look to the US Army’s experience and realise that the leverage that digitisation and NEC will give the Corps should encourage the passing of the NTT/PVR-enhancing tents/stags/pan bash/jif jobs task.) This may one day be driven by O&D demands, if digitisation reduces the R SIGNALS manpower requirement at HQs to a level where the ‘jif job’ aren’t sustainable with the ‘slack manpower’ present by virtue of the CIS-driven establishment. I suspect however that inertia, and a lack of awareness at higher levels of how 'jif jobs' are felt to be incompatible with our role by many junior officers and soldiers, will hinder such a shift in attitudes.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

  • REME/R SIGNALS division of responsibility: http://www.rememuseum.org.uk/remeass/history.htm
    R SIGNALS Mission and Tasks: Land Component Handbook, Staff Officers' Handbook, Part 2, page 2-1-16
    Land Component Handbook, Doctrinal Notes, Doctrinal Note 00/2, Air Manoeuvre.
    Future Land Operational Concept (FLOC) paper published by DGD&D, Sep 03.
 

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