MORALE IN THE RLC

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#1
First of all, I am not in the RLC. I think you can probably guess what I do by my name!

I read this forum regularly and I am honestly struck by how low the morale appears to be within the RLC. I have waited a while before posting this tread in anticipation of morale (perceived....!!) picking up. Just about every thread is full of comments made by some pretty pi$%ed off soldiers (and officers?) Is it me or is morale really as low as I perceive it to be? No, I am not a mole living in HQ DRLC!

Comments.......
 
#2
A happy soldier is a whining soldier. If the whining stops, then something serious has gone wrong.
Personally, I don't think morale in the RLC is any worse or better than any other arm. The recruiting figures show that the RLC is still attracting its fair share of folk.
 
#3
IMHO morale seems to be as good as any other arm.
 
#5
Well, at first glance, the RLC would seem to be full of gargantuan whingers (we do have the AT trade after all!) but there again we are one of the larger blobs of green in the ORBAT and, characteristically, Thomas Atkins Esq is not given to opening up and telling the world that he is a happy wee soul in a super, flower be-decked corner of paradise that is populated with fluffy bunnies. Nah. Thomas tends to spark up when he's hacked off. Theres a small number of RLC posters here (Oh, okay, most of the AT role in one form or another)and I'd suggest that if there were a huge ripple of dissatisfaction disturbing the fetid pond of loggiedom, there would be far more whines clogging the band width.
Notwithstanding that "its not too bad really" sort of statement, I've picked up on several raised eyebrows about the type and quality of posts that the RLC site hosts. Some of the raised eyebrows have been from grown ups who profess the "know of the existence of Arrse" and some of the more pointed comments have come from the old and the bold who see their "legacy" being trashed by the callow youths who have followed in their footsteps, but the majority of the raised eyebrows have come from other, serving, cap badges who seem bemused that we seem so hell-bent on public ritual abuse prior to ritual disembowelment.
Maybe its because the frequency of op tours is beyond a joke (Some getting that prized fourth Pet Op tour in the GIFA or others the responsibility of being the clothing storemen in BLMF for the third time or still others who have ten ribbons, four gongs, a divorce and a posting to Mill Hill to contend with who come across a grown up with no recent op experience.)
There is also a surprising degree of antipathy towards what I deliberately elect to call "the management" - not the often faceless drones in DRLC (oops, there went the last dregs of a career, but I'm only quoting an oft-expressed opinion) - but the "management" at unit level. I have to confess (Senior moment coming on) that within units I've served with, we often had "managers" who were less than wonderful and who we would verbally (and sometimes physically) gut - but amongst ourselves, so sparing the rest of the world the sordid truth. Its a bit like the old REMF comment: if the guys at the front knew what we were doing, they'd give up immediately".
I guess I just have a small degree of old fart-dom in me that finds it a little sad that we elect to abase ourselves in front of the harsghest jury in the world - our peers.
Oh, finally Ginger Magician, just to - hopefully - reinforce your contention, how do the retention figures hold up in comparison with recruitment?
 
#6
rickshaw said:
Oh, finally Ginger Magician, just to - hopefully - reinforce your contention, how do the retention figures hold up in comparison with recruitment?
Of that i'm not too sure - I just have access to the "cradle" stats first hand. I can check "grave" and update in due course however.

Edited to add the following stats. Some of this is heartening, some of it not so. (statistics as at Nov 05, published Dec 05- the most recent I can find)

Headline figures:

RLC Soldier outflow (12 months from 1 Dec 04 to 30 Nov 05) 4,5%
RLC Officer Outflow (12 months from 1 Dec 04 to 30 Nov 05) 3.5%

Undermanning - RLC Soldier -0.3% RLC Officer -3.2% where's the undermanning most significant? Soldier - LCpl rank (-387), Offr is at Capt rank (-65)

Historical Outflow Trends (by financial year)

Offrs - trend is that Pvr rates are reasonably steady.
year - Rate
00/01 - 4.0%
01/02 - 3.6%
02/03 - 3.4%
03/04 - 3.8%
04/05 - 4.4%
12 mths Dec to Dec - 3.5%

Soldiers - trend is that pvr rates are lessening.
Rate -
6.8% 00/01
5.5% 01/02
5.6% 02/03
5.0% 03/04
4.6% 04/05
4.5% 12 mths dec to dec

Overall officer manning is poor at Capt rank and they're not staying in. Other undermanned Corps include RE, Cav, and a few PQO areas. Infanry are 14.7% overmanned.
Overall soldier manning is better but with a big gap at LCpl rank.

My desk is covered in paperwork and I have quickly gleaned these stats from a report with which I'm unfamiliar - any errors you spot are entirely my own.
 
#7
Ginger_Magician said:
rickshaw said:
Oh, finally Ginger Magician, just to - hopefully - reinforce your contention, how do the retention figures hold up in comparison with recruitment?
Of that i'm not too sure - I just have access to the "cradle" stats first hand. I can check "grave" and update in due course however.
Grateful.
 
#9
Seahorse - Its interesting that I too mas thinking the same thing the other day. I am in the RLC and post on this forum and I have to admit to being guilty of 'doing down' the Corps on occasion. I suppose you only post things on here that pi$$ you off. MAybe thats wrong but its true. The question is why does the RLC forum appear to worse than others to someone quite neutral like Seahorse???
 
#10
Louis_Cyph said:
Seahorse - Its interesting that I too mas thinking the same thing the other day. I am in the RLC and post on this forum and I have to admit to being guilty of 'doing down' the Corps on occasion. I suppose you only post things on here that pi$$ you off. MAybe thats wrong but its true. The question is why does the RLC forum appear to worse than others to someone quite neutral like Seahorse???
Hate to state the obvious (Wah, again?) but have a quick scan on other fora and you'll see it all too clearly. We whinge even more than the Nut Stranglers and the Bleeps and that must be a good combat indicator.
 
#11
Fair one Rickshaw - Mind you I notice the beeps arn't far behind us.
 
#13
Outstanding said:
As long as they remain behind us - in everything things are cool!
Not too sure I want a Bleep behind me............
 
#16
Spanners, unfortunately we have an identity crisis in the RLC. Essential elements of the tribal fabric that was suppossed to knit such a large collection of trades together were removed, trade identity badges being one, creating a vacumn in which proud military individuals clung even harder to the old days thus defeating the object. Change is hard but this made the change even harder and with a bitter taste. I am in the Corps, that's what I think and I say it because I want it to work. I like to think that wherever I have served I have dug out blind to lead well, manage well and breed enthusiasm.

We remain a large group of people, throughly professional and clearly mostly content bunch. However, as a whole we lack Corps pride and have instead replaced it in the round with Regtl/ Unit pride. In a large Corps there is seldom ownership of a place within a Unit unless it is very well led or the members are given a good reason to be a contributor. Our success in recruiting has arisen from strong, young and keen individuals who have enjoyed their time in the RLC operationally etc but also I would suggest wish to convince others that they are worthy. This issue of worth and identity is important. We spend a great deal of time playing to or worrying about coming across as the stereotype loggie. However, as a minority individuals move further up the chain there is less sincerity to this conviction and there is reliance on potential rather than contribution in order to succeed which is why we appear to have not moved on in over a decade.

In summary Spanners, some individuals who tap away in the RLC forum often insert posts that are personal gripes and whinges more than any other capbadge because a great deal of time is taken up with floating around in the ether. Am I part of it or am I not? True, they have a part to play it supporting it but they also deserve top cover. Logistics isn't particulary hard but is very much based upon the premise of sound enforcement of the intent an area of military business enforced by charisma and charachter. As a Corps we spend a lot of time on these evaluations of our peers as it is what makes and threatens these Regtl identities we have forged. We rarely see real CSS issues dealt with because they are often non-negotiable and straight forward or simply not interesting. This is shame; there is a lot to discuss. Personally I am very happy with life in the RLC and annoyed on occasion to read some of the posts on this forum. It's a shame but a fact and why some many threads in this forum are either directly related to this issue of identity or, often with vigour, berate it.

Finally the truth is this; perversely it is this sort of open argument, useless harmful rants being the exception, that we have lacked in the Corps. These issues should be being addressed at a forum in Deepcut not in front of the world on the internet. In an ironic way it brings the issue to the surface along with some Corps loyalty that people never knew they had.
 
#17
Its all true, moral is low.
You speak to anyone without an officer present and they will tell you how shit it is and they didnt join the Army to do whatever they are doing that is not their job or what they expected their job to be.
Ptes hate the Army ( get out after their four years cause the recruiters painted a pretty picture)
Jncos hate the Army (Only stay in cause they just got promoted/married/in debt/big CSA bills and get out at the twelve year point)
Sncos Hate the Army (all of the above but stay in for 22yrs because of the pension trap)
And Junior officers hate the Army ( which is why loads are handing in their commisions).

Too many Tours
Too many commitments
Too many Sickies/Biffers
Too many uselesss managers ( not a blanket statement cause there are some OK ones)
Too many stupid rules ( ie being told to wear your Berets in your own civillian car while wearing uniform)

feel free to add any "Too Many's"

Yeah I am a whinger but things dont get changed for the better unless poeple know what the problems are.
Oh and if you dont like it you know what you can do.!!!!!
 
#18
We remain a large group of people, throughly professional and clearly mostly content bunch. However, as a whole we lack Corps pride and have instead replaced it in the round with Regtl/ Unit pride. In a large Corps there is seldom ownership of a place within a Unit unless it is very well led or the members are given a good reason to be a contributor. Our success in recruiting has arisen from strong, young and keen individuals who have enjoyed their time in the RLC operationally etc but also I would suggest wish to convince others that they are worthy. This issue of worth and identity is important. We spend a great deal of time playing to or worrying about coming across as the stereotype loggie. However, as a minority individuals move further up the chain there is less sincerity to this conviction and there is reliance on potential rather than contribution in order to succeed which is why we appear to have not moved on in over a decade.
Well said. I remember standing on parade in Sennelager in 93 for the rLC formation parade with us RCT standing with the chefs, RAOC, RE P&C and Pioneers, and we were all expected to become one big happy family overnight. Unit identities were stripped away, trades mixed up with each other with no idea of what each of us did. People placed into positions of autority which they would have never acheived if the corps had stayed the same. In short, it was an example of pure bad identity management. It didn't help when you had the new CS and GS units where whole swathes of units had no jobs. Sotremen and supply bods had no store or supplies to manage unless deployed on ops. Barrack life was an endless cycle of PT and area cleaning, skills gaps were evident where some former corps had to improve their field skills or fitness, or cross train with extra MT training. I don't think the RLC was ever well thought out, but what it does need is a single identity, which, it has to be said is currently lacking.
 
#19
rickshaw said:
Outstanding said:
As long as they remain behind us - in everything things are cool!
Not too sure I want a Bleep behind me............
...You bring the soap on a rope and i will bring the scissors are you gentlemen talking about the RSigs?
 
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