Trade Selection

Discussion in 'Royal Signals' started by TA_sig, May 11, 2004.

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  1. I've been a lurker for some time now, figured it'd be useful to register.

    As you can guess by my call sign I'm in the TA, I'm currently undergoing foundation training with the signals and will soon have to make a decision on my trade. The initial psychometric testing indicated I have officer potential but the next TCB and potential officer interviews that I will be able to get on to will probably be in December, in the meantime I will have to atleast choose a trade to train for.

    My question is what trade would benefit me most for understanding the role of signals as a potential future officer? I've been looking at area systems as a possibilliy since it is a large part of signals operations, can anyone shed any information on what the roles is like, past the basic army website description?
  2. You must do a Class 3 trade, if not you'll stand out like a sore thumb.
    Your choice on trade depends on your brigade:

    11 Sig Bde : Probably you should go for Radio Relay (AS Op(RR)), its the most predominant trade and will give a reasonable overview of trunk node and the problems dets get. You may get advised Radio Sys Op but this won't help your (officer or operator) career in this Bde. Alternatively you could consider AS Op(P) (this maybe called switch or Tele Op(Sys)), this would give you a good overview of a trunk node. If your in a Euromux unit, ignore this section and read the advice below.

    2 Sig Bde : Thats simple only one choice Rad Sys Op.

    ......But if you likely to be moving around (the country) and therefore swapping between Bdes. I would only suggest Radio Systems Op as 2 Sig Bde doesn't recognise the Area Systems Operator trade.
  3. msr

    msr LE

    Become a tech, get your trade and trade pay, which you keep while you are an O/Cdt, bearing in mind it could take some time from passing TCB to getting your commission....

  4. Don't you still have to do a class 3 operator course before you follow this path?
    Plus with Pay 2000 an RS Ops, AS Ops and Techs are all on the same pay.
  6. They have to complete AS Ops (RR) TATOs 1 to 3.2, and they prefer you to have civi qualifications/experience in a relevent engineering/technical dicipline.
  7. If you want to go officer, I don't think going tech is the best way forward. There is no difference in pay scale now, and you only learn one tech module at a time so you still have no greater understanding of the system as a whole. Choose a trade that is central to the type of unit you are in eg, AS op, that way you have a better chance of seeing what's going on around you.
  8. The regiment is part of 11 Sig Bde, for the duration of my foundation training I've been put with an area sys squadron but there is a radio relay one near by and they are arguing over who gets the new recruits, especially those with higher test scores :D . There's a chance I'll end up getting moved around a fair bit over the next few years though-so radio sys op?

    I am hoping to try and stay within 11 sig bde it might not be possible, it will be a while before I'm officially placed within a squadren though as I've got to get my phase 1 training out of the way first-I should have a better picture of what is happening by then. Can't say I'm not daunted by the TCB, Sandhurst experience, I'm trying to locate some Officer cadets to talk about it with.

    Heh I've got a nice laptop pc that would fit in the back of a radio relay wagon, not that I've heard of TEMPEST or anything....
  9. One thing to bear in mind when thinking Radio Relay is the regulars have lost this trade and by the end of the year will only exist in the 3 TA Ptarmigan Regiments.

    Saying that it is a very good stepping stone if your going tech or Officer BUT not if you want to be an operator with a future.

    p.s. If your thinking Rad Sys, consider changing to a Radio Regiment, Ptarmigan can be dull for a rad ops (plus you'd only be a Rad Op (Basic) - not the full shilling)
  10. RS Op will be heavily involved in the new combat net radio system "Bowman". Presumably the TA are getting Bowman as well?

    I'm not RS Op but it has harnessed the former Tele Op (TG) trade, which was often referred to as jack-of-all-trades employment. Or "God's trade" if you were one!

    If the TA get Bowman then RS Op would probably be really interesting. You get to deploy out into radio detachments and, in opinion, it seems to be far more in keeping with the future army comms strategy of small, flexible detachments.

    I agree that, for TA, the tech trade is a non-starter in prep for commissioning. Regular would be a different matter.

    Let us know how you get on.

  11. FBW

    FBW Old-Salt

    as far as i am aware ta units of 11 Sig Bde are getting bowman in the very near future it will br RS ops getting retraded first and then slowly ptarmigan being fazed out

    should be intresting seing the ptarmigan wallers having to work for a change :)
  12. pd, of course RS Op is the new 'gods trade'


    Ptarmigan will not be replaced by Bowman, that will be Falcon. Yes like all Bdes 11 Bde will recieve Bowman shortly (10 years then?) but I'll be suprised if its employed any differently to Clansman (i.e. run as a voice net only). I can't see 11 Bde having any need for HCDR as Ptarmigan can do that.
    I wouldn't too be sure all the Bowman kit goes to RS Ops, I'd have thought each SAS/ELG will be given equipment to interface Ptarmigan to Bowman and that be done by AS Ops (switch bitches).

    2 Sig Bde may use Bowman in its fullest form but they already use IP capable radios (AIRWAVE). HCDR could be useful for but AIRWAVE could also be used for data eventually. However I'm sure the CCRF's will turn up with their BOWMAN FFRs and expect to connected via BOWMAN to Bde.
  13. I've heard there are a number of senior Officers (TA and otherwise) in 11 BDE looking to get their regiments digitised as soon as they can, but for us TA types it'll probably be atleast five years after everyone else and their granddads get the kit, it's deployment is something that I'm interested being actively involved in though and it wouldn't look bad on ye olde CV.

    Oh the choices, I guess the best thing to do is talk to people in the trades and get out on exercise to try out the kit and see what I enjoy and weigh it all up then. It'll be a couple of months until I have to choose a trade for definate though.
  14. If you want to be an IS Op (in TA) you need to transfer to either 32, 38 or 71 Sigs Regts, I believe they all have IS Dets.
  15. Don't get too bogged down with trade selection. From a ptarmigan point of view I'd agree with polar. AS Op (RR) is best if you're thinking of doing offr selection and staying in the regt. It's the trade that could cause you real problems if you don't know what they do, what resources they have and how long it takes to set up. Have you seen the TACE? Enough to strike fear in any untrained ruperts heart!

    You can't always rely on your recce SNCO to be there to point out any glaring errors and when you do your own recces you need to know where to site your RR's for the best links (even the ones you've not been told about yet!).

    Bottom line though, is that even with all your offr trg courses you'll have to go away and read up on all the kit, listen to your SNCO's/ PSI's and do your homework no matter what trade you started as :roll: