Why was the Supply Controller trade so hammered?

Discussion in 'RLC' started by regular_imbiber, Sep 28, 2010.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. I'm talking about those who joined as Supply Controllers from the word go; these hard-working and intelligent soldiers have had at least two major hammer blows directed against them in recent years....

    Firstly, you might recall that in the years 1999-2002 approximately,SupCon was THE trade to either transfer to from within the RLC or to re-capbadge to if from another Arm or Service.
    The reason behind this was quite simple;it was the best trade for promotion.And to a full-screw/lance-jack with 9-12 years service at their original job and going nowhere fast this was undoubtedly true.How many came in from "the outside" and received one CR(as SJAR's hadnt been invented yet) in their new job and miraculously appeared on the next board? It was as if the preceding 9-12 years,and sometimes more in certain cases,hadnt happened and the soldier had suddenly reinvented her/himself... Ive seen soldiers do one job as a SupCon,get found out and then be moved to RCMO's Sgt or Admin Sgt where they could do no more damage at trade.

    The second big thing to test any loyal "pure" SupCon was the amalgamation of the SupCon and SupSpecs trade to form the mongrel job of firstly Supplier and now "Logistic Specialist".
    It must be said that this was the aim of SupSpecs for many a year and they achieved it.You only had to listen to them whingeing about SupCon promotion whenever a board was published to see how bitter they were.My answer to them everytime was usually along the lines of "When I walked into the ACIO I turned left and when you walked in you turned right; you made your choice so how about crying about Drivers,Chefs,Movers or even other cap-badges promotion if it bothers you that much?" This usually did the trick.

    However,they got their way and what is the result? People pigeon-holed into jobs and unable to get out of them because they are either too good at them and so cant be replaced or conversely the useless staying at an easy "Log Spec" role because no-one else wants them.

    Still, I had a good run at being a Supply Controller and look back fondly to when the full-screw provisioner at a Stores Sect/Tp or even Sgt provisioner at Bde Sp Sqns told a higher-ranking SupSpec what was about to arrive in his beloved storehouse or wagons and what was leaving it and there was nothing they could do about it.

    "Log Specs".... I despair.

    PS Pet Ops - you're next into the mongrel trade.
  2. And the point of this thread is?
  3. TBH RI, if other trades/Arms were entering the Sup Con trade stream and gaining quicker promotion than those 'pure' Sup Cons it only goes to highlight how poor the performance of the 'pure' Sup Con was, don't you think.

    And let's be honest, why have two types of stacker when one will do? The REME Tech Stmn did it for years and now they've even given them the job of training recruits too.
  4. I've worked with cracking well clued-up Sup Con's who used to be Storemen, Infantry, etc. and alternatively, I worked with a bigger bunch of 'pure' Sup Cons who were useless office-hiding hand-bags.

    As a trade, it was good, I enjoyed it and it set me up for Civvie Strasse. I revelled in the griping and dripping from Sup Specs when the boards came out and the analysis of the army numbers meant that many Sup Cons were indeed, stepping themselves up the promotion ladder in a rapid fashion.

    The annoying thing I found, IMHO to the detriment of the trade, was the lack of 'military' skills & courses that Sup Cons undertook. Yeah, we were all Global/Oliver/COFFER/ Amanda et al trained but not many were Instructors for ITD/MATT's/etc. I know most would say 'It's not their job', but even the most basic ex-something or other that transferred into the trade had something else up their sleeve that hit the spot when it came to CR time; MHE or NBC instructor, it didn't really matter what is was, as long as it was something else.
    My personal experience of working in an office of my peers whose reluctance to get out there and do something else used to really grip my shite.

    The argument could be it didn't matter as the trade itself accelerated the promotion, but possibly R_I's observations somehow could negate that? I make no apologies for the above about some in the trade and the jealousy surrounding those from 'outside' but, IMO, you brought it on yourselves.

    Me, I'm ex-Cavalry of 3 years, who transferred into the corps in late '89. Whilst in the trade I managed to become a Support Services Signaller B3, a RMA3, First aid Instructor and BFAT, Range Supevisor SA(B)90, UEL and an Arrest & Restraint instructor course to name a few. Laughingly they didn't help my long term career prospects as I bugged out at my 12 year point! ^_^
  5. You what? I dont remember any Sup Specs wanting the amalgamation of the trades, from Tom to WO2 rank, no one wanted a posting into a job they didnt have a clue about. A Q man at the time said, What would happen if his next posting was to be in charge of the PC&A office? He would know less than his toms.
    If stackers wanted to be shiny arses they would have either join as one or tranfered. I hate being stuck behind a global terminal, I'd much rather be on the shop floor than in an office. (theres more stealing opportunities).
    The old Sup cons might be taking a kicking now because as Fat_cav points out a large amount of them were content to sit in their office and could only be graded against other sup cons, now as everyone is graded together its a bit harder because sup specs tend to do more outside of their confort zone.
  6. Percy_Pigeon

    Percy_Pigeon War Hero Book Reviewer

    It’s all bollocks in the end if your good enough your good enough and you will still climb the ladder rapidly. If you get found out you stagnate/get sacked ask a number of WOs and LEs who have had their cards marked recently. And we are all big boys and girls we all know what’s required and should get of our arses and get us and our staff up to speed and not recommend individuals that are not up to speed for promotion.

    Furthermore in my opinion the main drawback as been that we have lost some of the pure expertise that we had before and increasing time away from 2nd/3rd line means that we have lost some core capability. By becoming more generalist, is goes without saying that many of the skills learned by doing the old trades will be lost or never be learned, this is accepted by the Corps and given that there is still not an EFFECTIVE supply course for officers obviously not seen as a priority and many individuals go out of trade for posting after posting only to return to TRADE to crash and burn...

    MJDI will go some way to restoring this balance but I feel that we must not be away from Core trade (i.e. not 1st line) for more than 2 years; and if In the futures as more 2nd line accounts have no stocks in barracks I fear for the quality of future tradesman, dry training can never replace actual day to day hands on.

    For me the bottom line is that we cannot go back and given SDSR it is more than likely that there will be fewer postings, less live accounts and more trade mergers this issue will become more acute. This will require the Corps /HQ LF/LWC to fund and formalise the virtual Training Facility’s and invest in some management and control measures possible a pass or fail test ex. This will place the onus on the Regiments to get there staff up to speed or the CO down don’t get the tick in the box.

    This I fear like other similar issues (ATs) will probably be well after the horses have bolted.

  7. Awesome bait from R_I. Mainly bullshit of course.
  8. Not really bullshit though dingerr,and I'm sure that as the lads on this thread(apart from your good self) seem to be of either SupCon or SupSpec stock they'll have come across this scenario before:

    A SupCon LCpl/Cpl* receives his or hers 2nd/3rd or 4th "O" CR in a row and looks forward (though he or she is not saying it out loud of course) to the next promotion board.
    Lo and behold, he or she is not on it.Meanwhile LCpl X or Cpl Y,who has retraded/capbadged from the 2nd Highland Laddies or the 1st Cheese and Pickles and has never had an "O" in his life,somehow gets one in his first reporting year as demand vetting clerk and is duly promoted.......

    As for not going out and doing other courses I would say that depended on who you worked for and where. I managed to do a few but it was difficult in certain places for various reasons and I know a few folk who asked to do courses and got knocked back point blank....

    * Not me ^~
  9. R_I, there's definitely a distinct difference between those unable to get on course's and those unwilling. I guess I've been lucky to have bosses who have seen the benefit of courses to ones career. Similary the same bosse's have been banging their heads against brickwalls trying to get LCpl/Cpl XYZ anywhere near a training establishment, with the exception of the Sch of Log :wink:

    Personally I can't say I've come across your (extreme) example of an 'outsider' making the board on one 'O' CR.
    Although I suppose I come close to that criteria; I made the LCpl board after 18 months, but my first posting into the illustrious RAOC was as a Tom outloading a UK Base Depot during Op Granby and being given POHR for a LCpl for most of that as there was no establishment for a Pte Sup Con. I've no idea why I wasn't posted out, it just was a circumstance of timing I believe :?:
  10. I have to agree with some of the comments on here! The Sup Spec never wanted to merge into one trade as most if not all hated the thought of sitting in front of a PC for hours on end getting bored and fat!

    Promotion was always a bone of contention between the shiny arses and stackers; but fun to watch. Fact is times have changed and the old system was going to fail.
  11. And the thought of getting wet and cold in the back of a TSC, in a JCB, drafty warehouse, etc. brought me out in hives. :shaking2:
  12. I hate stackers and I don't care what their background is.

    They can't even undertsand the Queens tongue these days............
  13. Could never understand why the Army had Sup Spec and Sup Con, us crabs didn't need it, we just send our mongs to the rack shelf bin jobs!
  14. It shows what little folk know of the different trades if they think that SupCons were "stackers".

    The only thing I ever stacked was Management Prints and I'd have loved to have seen certain Sup Specs attempt them each day,week and month :)
  15. Spoken like a true Driver! you may not be able to understand some of them but they would struggle to understand your spelling!