your guide to becoming an officer in the territorial army
skills for business, leadership for life
opportunity “ the army
“the training makes it
gave me a easy to
chance to get fit and
learn more to try new
about myself activities”
skills for business, and to test
leadership for life nicola hemsworth
Are you looking for something extra? Maybe you want a new
challenge, a way to improve your fitness or an opportunity
to test and develop your leadership skills. You can get all of
these things by joining the Army as a Territorial officer.
Territorial units make up a quarter of the Army’s strength.
Unlike the Regulars, Territorials train in their spare time so
they can combine military life with their existing careers.
As an officer your training takes the form of an extensive
leadership and management programme to prepare you for
the responsibilities of leading soldiers. It is accredited by
the Chartered Management Institute and conducted by staff “ iwas looking
for a way
from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. to develop
Whatever you do in civilian life, becoming a Territorial officer my skills as
is a great way to expand your horizons. You get paid for your a leader”
time and gain skills that are valued in business and in life. keith cahill
page 14 people
qualify as a leader “ the best part
AllTerritorialofficers of being an
contents gaintheChartered officer is
ManagementInstitute’s working with
people 4–9 fitness 22–27 Level5Certificatein the soldiers” challenge
06 How to become a TA officer 24 How military training can
06 Face to face with TA officers boost your fitness Leadership.Thisis simar singh “combining
07 The basic entry requirements E
24 xpert advice to help you widelyrecognisedby page 6 my role in
get ready for selection civilianemployers. the army
leadership 10–15 27 Take your sport further on
12 Benefits to you
14 Benefits to your employer
an Army expedition civilian job
15 What your employer needs
opportunity 28–40 keeps me
to know 30 Selection and training
32 Officer training at Sandhurst
challenge 16–21 34 Your route to becoming
18 Serving on operations an Army officer
21 Applying your military skills
36 Where to use your skills
employer? officers to your organisation page 15
to your civilian job
37 Five years on... Find out about the value of Territorial
21Territorial pay and benefits
38 Taking the next steps
There’s no such thing as a typical Territorial officer. They come from all walks of life
and they all have their own reasons for joining. Meet them, and find out more
06 How to become a Territorial Army officer
06 Face to face with TA officers
07 The basic entry requirements
because you’ve already got basic military skills
you won’t have to start right at the beginning. thedirect
UOTC officer entryofficer
There are 19 University Officer Training Corps
across the country. Officer cadets are students timlillie
and take part in military and other activities, but
have no obligation to join the Army and cannot
engineering student /
deploy on operations. After graduating, if you troop commander
There are many reasons to become a Territorial officer, and aren’t joining the Regular Army, you can choose
to transfer to a TA unit. Tim joined the Territorial Army as it gave
four ways to join. Meet four officers and read their stories him the opportunity to combine military
TA Sponsored officer training with his academic work. He chose
A TA Sponsored Officer (TASO) is a student who to join the Royal Electrical and Mechanical
The Territorial Army’s greatest strength is its have no previous military experience. Once you has been provisionally accepted and sponsored Engineers and is currently studying for a
people. As an officer, your job will be to get the have passed officer selection, you will be able by their chosen Territorial unit, but who does degree in engineering at Imperial College.
best out of them, turning a diverse group with to go straight into officer training at a Regional most of their officer training through a UOTC.
a wide range of skills and experiences into an Training Centre (RTC). If you choose this route, you’ll return to your Why did you become a TA officer?
effective team able to tackle any task that it’s Territorial unit after you have graduated to I chose the Army because you get to do a
assigned. There are four main routes you can Unit potential officer complete your officer training. massive range of activities, from soldiering
take to become a Territorial officer. After serving in a Territorial unit as a soldier you to adventure sports. I was keen to get into
might choose to apply for officer training, or
you could be identified as a suitable officer
Served as a Regular? a leadership role so I chose the Direct Entry
route, which allows you to become an officer
Most Territorial units accept officers who can candidate by the staff at your unit. You will without serving as a TA soldier first.
demonstrate leadership potential, even if they need to pass some selection courses, but What does being a Territorial give you?
You get an intense sense of comradeship
from your unit. It’s like being part of a very
theUnitpotentialofficer large, very diverse family. There are people
there who have been in the Regulars, others
SimarSingh who are running their own businesses and
others who are just starting out. It’s the
lawyer / platoon commander officer’s job to make them into a team.
What does your job involve?
Simar joined the Territorial Army Are there advantages to serving I help with the running of my unit and deal
as a soldier shortly after starting as a soldier first? with any welfare issues that come up. It
a new job. “I was working in an Yes. It’s the soldiers on the ground would take me a long time anywhere else
office,” he says, “and was looking who make things happen. If you to get the level of responsibility I get as an
for a way to bring more adventure understand their mindset because officer, and it’s a great way to meet people.
into my life.” He has recently you’ve been in the same position,
been selected for officer training. I think it makes you a better leader
and enhances your credibility. bASiC ReqUiRemenTS
Why do you want to be an officer? Was it easy to apply? To become an officer in the
I see it as a way of developing my When I decided that I wanted to
civilian and Army careers at the become an officer I spoke to my Territorial Army you must:
same time. Both of them rely on platoon commander and he n Be over 18 and under 35
sound administrative and man helped me with the application n Be a UK, Irish or Commonwealth citizen
management abilities, as well as a process. I’m due to start my officer who has been living in the UK for five years
talent for leadership, so I’ll be able training in a few weeks. It feels like n Have achieved 35 ALIS points in your best
to develop skills that I can transfer a natural step after all the work seven subjects at GCSE, and 180 UCAS
between the two worlds. that I’ve done as a soldier. tariff points at AS and A level
strategic buyer / troop commander
Nicola’s local Territorial unit What kind of people do you meet?
sponsored her officer training
while she was at university. The TA
There isn’t a particular type but no
matter what you do, you’ll always
helps her strike a balance between find people you get on with. I calvinSmithstudent / platoon commander
Army life and a civilian career. became friends with a lot of the
people I met in officer training and Calvin Smith joined the University getting involved. People often say that else comes after that. If you can’t get to
How do you benefit from being we’re still in touch with each other. Officer Training Corps (UOTC) in they’re surprised by what they’ve been training because there’s an essay due or
a Territorial officer? What do you want to do next? his first year at university. “It’s not able to achieve. If it wasn’t fun, they an exam to revise for, all you have to do
It’s really helped me improve my In the long term I’d like to get some a tough choice,” he says. “You learn wouldn’t keep coming back. is tell your platoon commander.
people skills. I work as a buyer, so more experience with my unit, and new skills, there’s a great social life What kind of people join? What sort of activities do you do?
I spend a lot of time negotiating maybe get a training post so I can and you get paid as well.” There’s a huge range. Some want to go As well as the classic military stuff such
with clients. I need to be able to talk give something back to the Army. on and join the Army, others just want as weapons handling and tactics, you
to them in an authoritative way and It’s not too long ago that I got my Is the UOTC like the Army? to do activities that are beyond the reach get the chance to try things like diving
use my confidence to make sure I commission, so in the short term The training gives you a taster of Army of the other clubs and societies. or skiing. We’re going skydiving in
get a good price. I’m sure my Army I’m looking forward to going on life, but it isn’t really tough and the staff Does it clash with your studies? California later this year – we’ll be paid
training has played a part in that. exercise with my new unit. aren’t looking for people who are super No. The staff know that university is for the whole two weeks we’re away and
fit. It’s about being enthusiastic and about getting a degree and everything everyone will get a qualification.
You don’t have to work in management to become an officer. All you need is
leadership potential. If you’ve got it, Territorial officer training will do the rest
12 How leadership training benefits you
14 How your leadership training benefits your employer
15 What your employer needs to know
The employee of orders while you’re on an exercise, then it’s
mani Sodhi easy to get 15 kids to pay attention when you’re
Teacher / plaToon commander teaching economics.
mani Sodhi did his officer training while he yoU deVelop a ‘Can do’ aTTiTUde
was also completing his teacher training “people in the army never say, ‘I can’t do this.’
course. he had been working in a bank and If there’s a problem, they find a way to solve it,
wanted a total change. “Becoming an officer and that’s an approach I’ve taken with me into
felt like the logical extension of what i wanted school. a few weeks ago a class were due to go
to do as a teacher,” mani says. “Both of the on a school trip but their teacher had called in Mani’s skills CV
jobs are about people and both have helped sick at the last minute, so I agreed to take the army training and experience gives Ta
me to develop as a leader.” trip instead. When you’re leading soldiers on officers the following transferable skills:
an operation, excuses aren’t an option. n presentation skills
yoU leaRn hoW To TalK To people n Communication skills
“I take a lot of skills from my training as doinG SomeThinG diFFeRenT n Self-discipline
a platoon commander into the classroom, helpS yoU FoCUS n Self-motivation
especially around communicating and “It’s good to get away from the academic world n planning skills
presenting your ideas. If you can make 30 sometimes, and the training we do is so far n instruction techniques
tired soldiers listen to an hour-and-a-half removed from school life that it’s really helpful. »
» When I did my teaching qualification, some employers:
of the people on the course were struggling
with it and finding the classroom environment
really tough. But I was coming back to the TRaininG GeT inVolVed
classroom from weekends where I’d been Ta officers train in their spare time. research maintaining a regular dialogue with your
crawling through mud and doing live firing by leeds Business School shows that the employees in the Ta will help you get the best
exercises. I’d got rid of all my stress and felt training received by the average Ta member out of them. Your Territorial employees may be
pretty much ready for anything. would cost an employer £9000 a year. able to invite you to social occasions and other
events that give you the opportunity to take a
iT helpS yoUR WoRK/liFe BalanCe QUaliFiCaTionS first-hand look at what life is like as a Territorial.
“There’s a very good social side to the Ta, from Training and development provided by the
barbecues to formal events such as regimental Territorial army can count towards a range WhaT The Ta oFFeRS yoU
balls. It helps remind you that you’re part of of civilian qualifications. These may military training and experience focus on
a community, and you can bring your partner complement your own existing employee developing skills that are as important in
or your friends along as well so you don’t feel development programmes. all officers who the workplace as they are on exercises or
like you’re being asked to choose between complete their training gain the level 5 operations. These include teamwork and team
the two. In fact, both parts of my life seem to certificate in management and leadership leadership, self-confidence and adaptability.
complement each other really well. from the chartered management Institute. There are some qualities that are less easy to
quantify, such as loyalty, integrity and reliability,
yoU Can do a loT oF neTWoRKinG moBiliSaTion that underpin everything the army does.
“There’s a real social mix in the Ta. You get The process of calling Ta members into full-
people who are lawyers, shop workers and time service to support military operations is WheRe To Find oUT moRe
students in civilian life, which means there are known as mobilisation. everyone in the Ta is Supporting Britain’s reservists & employers
plenty of different perspectives. There’s even committed to the possibility of mobilisation if (SaBre) is a national campaign set up by the
a sergeant in my platoon who is a teacher and required, under the reserve Forces act 1996. mod to enhance the relationship between
works as a department head at another school.” employers have the right to seek exemption or Territorials and their employers. SaBre advises
deferral if necessary. The mod recognises the all Territorials to be open and honest with their
impact that the mobilisation of a Ta member employers about army commitments, in order
training that makes a difference can have on a civilian employer and provides a to help your business plan ahead. It offers
range of advice and support services, including you impartial advice, support and information
keiThcahill financial assistance (see below). on everything from training obligations to
Manager / troop coMMander employers’ legal rights and responsibilities.
employeR noTiFiCaTion SaBre can put you in touch with contacts at
I’m a team leader with HM Revenue and all Ta recruits who joined after 1 april 2004 a regional level who will be able to help you
Customs. The officer training I’ve done is are obligated to give the mod permission with specific queries, and can arrange for you
useful in my civilian job, especially with to contact their employer directly. employer to visit Ta units at home and overseas.
things like admin and communicating ideas notification is designed to encourage honesty
to other members of the team. between a Ta member and their employer, To find out more about SaBRe and how they
Learning how to apply your leadership The employeR’S VeRdiCT competitiveness. If he’s teaching two different minimising possible problems if they should help you make the most of your Territorials,
skills in practical situations makes you feel maGGie BolTon headTeacher groups he’ll get them competing against seek leave for training or in the rare event of visit sabre.mod.uk or call 0800 389 5459.
more confident. It’s a steep learning curve each other, and that’s a very effective way of compulsory mobilisation.
but it’s very rewarding. maggie Bolton, the headteacher of the school motivating students. It motivates him, too.
The better you get, the more doors open where mani teaches, thinks mani’s experiences “mani is also very good at setting goals, and FinanCial SUppoRT
up for you. Last weekend I went to an event in the Ta help him perform better at work. I think his army background has a lot to do with an employer can claim financial assistance to
where I met officers from other countries, that. he has a clear routine for his own form and cover the cost of replacing an employee who
and next year I’ll be representing British “mani did a placement here and we could see he sets standards for them to meet, which makes has deployed on operations. Fees for using
officers at a conference in Norway. was a very good teacher. We recognised mani’s them very confident in him. a recruitment agency or advertising for a
I’m still the same person I was when I leadership skills and when the position of head “I wouldn’t employ someone solely because replacement can also be claimed. employers
joined, but I’m much more ready to push of Business Studies came up, we appointed him. they were in the Ta – you can’t stereotype people do not have to continue paying an employee
myself forward and take on leadership roles. “as well as being a good leader, he’s a great like that. But it gives mani real presence and while they are away.
team player and understands the value of healthy confidence, and those are important qualities.” ▪
14 formoreinformationgotosabre.mod.uk 15
As an officer there’s always a new way to test yourself, from serving on operations
overseas to applying military skills in your civilian career
18 Serving as an officer on operations
21 Applying your military skills to your civilian job
21 Territorial pay and benefits
Mike Cumming completed
his officer training in 2004.
He commissioned into the
Parachute Regiment as he
wanted the opportunity to
command combat soldiers on
operations. “They’re well known
for getting in the thick of the
action,” he says, “so I knew my
first operational deployment
could be just around the corner.”
Mike got notice that he was
going to deploy to Iraq in 2007,
and started his preparatory
training shortly afterwards.
“You spend two-and-a-half months training
in the UK, and that prepares you physically as
well as mentally for everything you’re going to
face while you’re away. It’s all about getting you
in the right frame of mind.
aRRIvIng on oPeRaTIons
“I was a bit scared on my way over to Iraq – you
really just get the fear of the unknown. But while
your training back home goes a long way to »
Business owner / platoon commander
You are paid for all the time you spend
at your Territorial unit. The daily rate is
equivalent to that received by a Regular
officer of the same rank and experience and
in a comparable role. You are also paid for
each quarter day of training you do. To find
out what you could earn in you spare time
as a Territorial officer go online and visit
Every year when you satisfy the minimum
annual training requirement (19 days in a
National TA unit and 27 days in a Regional
TA unit) and pass the relevant training tests
you receive a tax-free lump sum known as
a bounty. Find out what bounty you could
receive at armyjobs.mod.uk/benefits/pay/
You’ll be paid for your travel to and from
your unit and to any other locations where
your training takes place. Meals taken while
you’re on duty, your uniform and other key
items of kit are all provided free.
If you deploy on operations and your civilian
» equipping you for what you’ll face on operations, geTTIng oUT on THe gRoUnd that you find in TA units. Our unit had doctors, in common than you might think. In both salary is higher than your Army pay, you can
you learn far more spending just one day in “It was doing foot patrols through villages and barristers and engineers working as soldiers my challenge cases you’re given an objective and a team claim the difference in pay up to a certain
theatre. Before you go out on the ground you
spend two weeks with the Operational Training
vehicle checkpoints that I enjoyed most. We’d
get to meet the local people all day, every day,
every day. What they all brought to the melting
pot was amazing; we were in the position to t
“ oapplyofficer of people whose skills you need to draw on in
order to get there, so my two jobs complement
amount. You can also claim for the cost of
replacing certain benefits that your employer
Advisory Group (OPTAG). This training is based
on situations that are taking place there, so it’s
and that was the best bit. I didn’t really know
what to expect at first, but units who had been
deal with any situation. By the end of our tour,
OPTAG wanted to shadow our unit to learn
skillstomycareer” each other well.
“One of the most valuable things I can take
provides while you’re away, such as health
insurance or school fees.
more realistic and puts everything you’ve learned working there before us had spent time building more about the way we did things. That was a
leannechristmas from military life is that I’ve become much
into context. You see how things work and what up relationships, so every village welcomed us. real pat on the back. Banker / platoon commander more self-reliant. I know that if someone gives LegaL PRoTeCTIon
you need to be looking out for, so you feel much We were their security. They were always happy “After the tour some guys were signing up to me a job, I can get on and do it. If you are deployed on operations, your job
more ready for the challenges ahead. to see us. The more time you spent with them, go to Afghanistan. Officially you can’t be called Leanne Christmas became a Territorial “Being a Territorial officer has been very is protected under The Reserve Forces
the more they’d be willing to talk to you so you’d up for another two years, but you can voluntarily because she wanted a different set of good for my career. Job interviews are often (safeguard of employment) act 1985. Under
aCCLIMaTIsIng To IRaq start to learn what life is really like there. mobilise yourself. If I didn’t have my own challenges to the ones she experienced in competence-based, so you’ll be asked to give this act, employers are guilty of an offence
“Getting used to mortar attacks every night was “We did really well in Iraq and I honestly businesses to run and have so many other her career. she’s found that many of the examples of your team-building skills or if they terminate your employment solely or
the first thing we had to deal with, but as the believe that it was because of the variety of skills responsibilities, I’d be straight back out there.” ▪ skills she’s learned are just as relevant in decision making skills, and being an officer mainly because of your liability to be called
tour goes on you get used to the stress levels the boardroom as on battlefield. gives me loads of ready made examples. up for military service.
and no situation fazes you. We’re a tight unit
anyway but out on operations everyone helps i
“fididn’thavemybusiness “The corporate world and military world
“I got promoted at work recently, and I’m
convinced that officer training and my Army For more information visit saBRe online at
themselves and each other. It’s the camaraderie
that really gets you through. toruni’dbebackoutthere” have very different values, but they have more experiences played a key part in that.” ▪ sabre.mod.uk or call 0800 389 5459.
20 formoreinformationgotoarmyjobs.mod.uk/benefits 21
With amazing rewards and a wealth of opportunities waiting for you in your
spare time, a career as a TA officer means that you get out more
24 How military training can boost your fitness
24 Expert advice to help you get ready for selection
27 Take your sport further on an Army expedition
“Fitness is a
key part oF
NURSE / tRoop commaNdER
Zayne Crow joined the TA in a bid to get fit. set myself goals. If I don’t, I get lazy and fall off
Since then she’s served in Iraq and run 14 the pace. They help to keep exercise interesting
marathons, two double-marathons and ‘the and enjoyable. A target could be as simple as
toughest foot race on earth’ – the Marathon completing a 5km fun-run, but it will really help.
des Sables, 151 miles across the Sahara Desert. Once you’ve done that run you can tick the box
and move on to the next challenge, which could
“Fitness is so important in the Army as you be a 10km fun-run. That’s how I trained for the
never know what job or challenge you’ll face ultra-marathon, the Marathon des Sables.
next. You need to make sure your fitness is “I used to say to myself, ‘Right, the Marathon
good. That way you’re ready for anything. des Sables is in a year, so I must maintain my
“Goals are really helpful. I’ve been running fitness.’ My targets were always marathons and
long distances for 20 years and I still need to I ran eight in the six months before the big race. »
get in shape now – 40-60 minutes, four times a week
preparation » stamina » upper body and trunk » lower limbs
wArM uP AnD runnIng SwIMMIng SIT-uPS TrICePS DIPS PreSS-uPS Pull-uPS/ SquATS STeP-uPS AlTernATe
Cool Down Running should be a key Swim as many lengths as you n Secure feet under fixed n With bent knees and n Keep hands shoulder-width heAveS n From a standing position n Step up from the floor onto SquAT ThruSTS
It’s important to warm up part of your exercise can without stopping in half object (or get a friend straight arms, rest hands apart and body straight (Only if you have lower body by bending a low chair or bench n Place hands flat on floor
before any exercise to loosen programme when preparing an hour. Alternatively, to hold them) on a sturdy chair or bench n Bend elbows and lower access to a beam knees slowly until they n Stand up straight with both with legs straight out
the muscles and get your for Army training. Plan a go for a 40-minute n Keep knees bent at behind you body until chest is about that can hold reach a 90-degree angle feet on chair or bench behind you
joints moving. You must running route, ideally on swim once a week, 90 degrees n Lower body until arms are an inch off the floor your weight): n Straighten back up to n Step back down n Bend one leg up beneath
also cool down afterwards flat grass or a mixture of trying to increase the n From a lying position raise bent at 90 degrees n Push back up to the n Hang from the standing position to the floor the body, then shoot it
to help get rid of the waste surfaces (road running number of lengths your body to 45 degrees n Push up to return to start position beam with arms n Knees should
gooD for backwards while the other
products in your muscles. puts a strain on ankles, each time. n Lower back down slowly the start position gooD for fully extended not push forward Strengthening leg comes up
To warm up jog gently knees and hips). and in control n Pull up until chin over the front n Alternate legs in a quick,
gooD for gooD for Upper arm and chest the thighs and
for about five minutes, do gooD for Exercising all major gooD for Building strength strength clears top of beam of your toes getting the thrusting movement
some stretching and then n Return to start
Endurance and stamina; muscles, heart Strengthening the trunk in the upper arms gooD for heart pumping gooD for
repeat your jog. To cool exercising the heart and lungs position under Building strength Leg muscles,
down after your session, do and lungs control in the thighs heart and
the same thing – a mixture gooD for lungs
of light jogging and some Biceps and upper
stretching exercises. body strength
24 For more information go to armyfit.mod.uk 25
» It paid off because I completed the Marathon
des Sables and finished in 155th place out of
879 athletes. It took me 29 hours and I was
the 11th female to finish.
adventurous training in the TA
keePIng fIT wITh The ArMy carl pates
“Life as a TA officer is very active and you soon StUdENt / platooN commaNdER
find yourself feeling fitter. But it’s important to
maintain that fitness, which takes dedication and
focus. The Army tests your fitness every year with
Carl Pates was a
or improving teamwork in
a different environment. “tHrougH
the Personal Fitness Test and the Annual Fitness
Test to help you keep in shape.
before he started a
Masters degree in civil
The objectives influence
whether or not you get the tHe army
“You enjoy the TA more if you’re fit. If your
fitness levels aren’t good you feel anxious about
engineering, so the uoTC
was the obvious choice
funding to go so you have
to set them wisely. i qualiFied
the tests, and exercises can be tough. But if you’re
on top of your game they’re really something to
for him. now he’s the
Where have you planned
trips to so far? as a ski
enjoy and look forward to, and you know you’re
doing your job to the best of your ability.
“If you’re trying to get fit enough to join the
What is your role at
I’ve planned and led trips
around the UK and to
Bavaria in Germany.
Army, there’s no need to force yourself to do the UOTC? Why do you do adventurous
things you hate. Start with just a couple of jogs I work closely with the training in the TA?
per week, get on the bicycle, have a swim or go Commanding Officer. I It encourages physical and
look after everything to do moral courage, improves
“keeping Fit is with planning adventurous
training trips. I then lead
leadership qualities and
team working – it’s a good
easier because the officer cadets once
we’re out there.
way to bring out the
qualities in your soldiers
you’re around How do you go about
planning an expedition?
that you need on operations.
What have you got out of
active and You have to think
about everything from
your current role?
Through the Army I have
driven people” accommodation and food,
to finances and finding
qualified instructors. You
qualified as a ski and
I’ve dived in the Red Sea,
rock climbing if that’s what you like to do. Use n You must also complete an obstacle course set objectives such as walked Europe and rock
the rower, cross trainer and treadmill at the gym
How Fit do to the best of your ability reaching certain peaks climbed in Costa Blanca.
– don’t do the same road run over and over i need to be?
again because you’ll get bored and demotivated. You need to meet basic fitness requirements AnnuAl fITneSS TeST
“One thing I’ve found is that once you join to pass the Army Officer Selection Board (see Your fitness is tested each year, and you will
the Territorials, keeping your fitness up is made page 31). There are also further fitness tests be expected to complete a six-mile march in
much easier because you’re always surrounded which you need to pass to qualify for your under one-and-a-half hours. To be eligible
by very active and driven people. annual bounty and to progress in your career. for operational tours you must do an eight-
“The Army helped me to get really excited by mile march carrying full kit in two hours.
physical challenges. I’m off to America with my The bASIC requIreMenTS
TA unit to do high-altitude mountain trekking n 44 press-ups in two minutes for men and PerSonAl fITneSS ASSeSSMenT
next week. We’ll be getting paid to climb Mount 21 press-ups in two minutes for women You must run 2.4km (1.5 miles) and do
Whitney – it’s 14,500 ft high and I can’t wait. I n 50 sit-ups in two minutes for both men a set number of press-ups and sit-ups to
would usually want to speed off into the distance and women pass the PFA and to qualify for your tax-
and do it at my own pace but I know there’s n A 10.2-level bleep test for men and an free annual bounty. The pass levels vary
nothing like doing it as a team – it makes it 8.1-level bleep test for women according to age and gender.
even more rewarding when you’ve finished.” n
26 For more information go to army.mod.uk/events/training 27
From soldiering to the principles of leadership, officer training equips you
with the skills you need and gives you the chance to develop new ones
30 Selection and training 32 Officer training at Sandhurst
34 Your route to becoming an Army officer 36 Where to use your skills
37 Five years on... 38 Taking the next steps
After your interview you will be contacted by
your sponsor unit. They will organise a medical
the officer selection process university
check and book you on the Recruit Selection
Weekend where you complete the next stage oFFicer
of the officer selection process.
The University Officer Training Corps (UOTC)
recruit selection Weekend gives university students the chance to develop
test youR skills their leadership skills through military activities.
As an officer, you will be expected to You’ll be paid for all the training you do, but
master the same military skills as the soldiers you won’t be asked to go on operations and you
you command. The Recruit Selection Weekend can leave the unit whenever you want. Students
tests your ability to learn those skills. You’ll do are chosen based on their mental aptitude and
some basic skills and fitness tests, as well as a physical fitness at a selection weekend.
medical assessment. If you pass you formally
join the Territorial Army, a process called Year one
‘attestation’. From this point onwards you’ll As an officer cadet you’ll learn basic military skills
be paid for each training session you attend. and you will complete part one of the Management
and leadership Development programme. You
train at weekends and in the evenings, so it’s easy
Module 1 to fit around your studies. You’ll test your skills at
This takes place over several weekends “the selection process the annual camp and you may decide to take part
in a Summer leader and fast track to a commission.
or a two-week course. Module 1 teaches
the same skills that are covered in soldiers’ is very intense but Year two
basic training including weapons handling,
communications and foot drill as well as how massively rewarding” Your leadership training will culminate in a series
of tests, including a mock attack. You’ll also do
to live in the field. part two of the Management and leadership
Development programme. You might then go on
After passing your interview at the AOSB Briefing. All the to get a commission.
Module 2 you will be contacted by a tests are assessed and staff
leadeRship skills Regional Training Centre will be looking to see how well Year three
Delivered over 10 weekends at a Regional (RTC). The RTC will arrange you work as part of a team, You’ll have the chance to join the UOTC’s
Training Centre (RTC), Module 2 helps apply your for you to do Modules 2 and evidence of your leadership training team, or take on responsibility for leading
leadership skills in a military context through a 3 and to meet with the Army ability and how you react groups of other officer cadets. In Scotland you
range of practical and theoretical exercises. As an Officer Selection Board under pressure. There is no can serve a fourth year with your UOTC.
officer cadet you will now wear the cap badge and (AOSB). The AOSB Briefing mental aptitude tests, an single test by which you pass
beret of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. and AOSB Main Board take informal discussion, leaderless or fail. If you succeed here,
place while you are training. tasks, command tasks, a you’ll continue training at
From the initial interview to the final training module, You must pass both before planning exercise, a fitness the RTC and will be eligible
learning to be an officer will put all your skills to the test Module 3 progressing to Module 4. test and an obstacle course. to go on to Module 4 – the
tactical skills You’ll also be briefed on what TA Commissioning Course.
You apply the skills you learned in Module AosB Briefing to expect at the Main Board.
The aim of the selection process is to check interview 2 in the intensive environment of a nine-day All officer selection is the
that you’ve got the potential to become an having a chat battle camp. The camp allows instructors to responsibility of the AOSB. AosB Main Board
officer, and that you’re ready to learn all the This can be set up by the unit you hope to assess your performance and gives you the final Before you complete the Main This runs for three-and-a-
necessary skills at officer training. If you’re join or by the staff of your local Army Careers opportunity to practise all the skills that will be Board, you attend the AOSB half days. You take written
already in the Territorial Army and have applied Information Office. You will be able to discuss put to the test when you move on to Module 4. Briefing to prepare you. This tests, give a presentation and
or been selected for officer training, you can the options available to you, and if an officer role lasts for one-and-a-half days take part in some outdoor
go straight to step four. Direct entrants start is right for you, you’ll get help to select a unit to turn to page 32 For module 4 and includes a series of exercises similar to the ones
by having an interview. sponsor you through the training process. Royal militaRy academy sandhuRst
30 For more information go to army.mod.uk/aosb 31
Module 4 WhAt hAppens
academy sandhuRst After sAndhurst?
The commissioning parade at Sandhurst
recognises all your hard work, but it doesn’t
mark the end of your training. Officers keep
learning throughout their careers and the
next stage starts at your unit.
your first job
As a newly qualified Second lieutenant,
you’re ready for your first command
appointment with your unit. Depending on
its role, you can expect to take charge of up
to 30 soldiers. You’ll be responsible for their
career development, their welfare and their
effectiveness in completing whatever task
nicola hemsworth Strategic buyer / Platoon commander
Nicola Hemsworth’s Territorial unit sponsored “For most of week one you go back over
her to train as an officer at her UOTC. She the basics, such as weapons handling and how
completed the Territorial Army commissioning to deliver orders to your soldiers. You also
course at Sandhurst in 2009 after graduating, complete a basic fitness test to make sure that
as it gave her the chance to continue her you’re ready for the physical challenges.
military training and combine it with her new “In the second week you start putting into
job as a buyer for Nestlé. practice the skills that you’ve learned in the
previous months. Communication skills are
“By the time you get to Sandhurst, you’ve particularly important when you’re issuing
already completed three modules of officer orders. As you come under more pressure and
training, so you’re very well prepared. The aim you realise that you can cope with what’s being
isn’t to teach you loads of new skills but to apply asked of you, it boosts your confidence. they’re assigned. It can be a steep learning
what you’ve already learned in a practical context. “At the end of the second week you do a
the territorial commissioning course – module 4 curve but the organisational skills that you
“Sandhurst is almost a mystical place. Before
you go, you hear all sorts of urban legends about
seven-day exercise. Sometimes it feels as though
you’re permanently running everywhere or
week 1 key military skills » week 2 leadership training » week 3 commissioning » learned at Sandhurst will help you, and there
will be experienced senior soldiers as well
what the course involves. And although it’s crawling through the mud and the cooked You revisit some of also be a series of Your performance is The field exercise comes ceremony is the as other officers on hand to give you advice.
very, very intense, once you get there you realise breakfast we had on our final morning is the key military skills briefings and lectures continually assessed to an end. For the staff culmination of all your
that it’s not so bad after all. The standard of probably one of the best things I’ve ever seen. training from previous to cover some of the through weeks two of Sandhurst it’s hard work, and marks post-commissioning training
instruction there is just amazing. “The ultimate reward is the parade on the last modules. There are theoretical aspects and three. There will decision time as they the point at which you You will be expected to serve for three years
day when you get your commission. It sounds a number of individual of life as an officer, be a combat fitness choose which of the go from officer cadet with your unit before your are eligible to
tests that you will need including the law of test and the chance to intake will go on to to Second lieutenant.
like a cliché, but when we marched up the steps deploy on operations. You also need to
to pass, including armed conflict. practise foot drill, as get a commission.
of the Old College at the end of the parade it weapons handling well as an assessment If you’ve made the complete some further training to give you
made me think about just what I’d achieved. and fitness tests. of your ability to concludes in week grade there will be the skills you will need. Most of these courses
“Getting the chance to do officer training and A two-day exercise compile and issue a three, where you’ll a short navigation take place at a Regional Training Centre and
to go to Sandhurst is an awesome opportunity gives you an early set of orders – a vital have to use your exercise and plenty include sessions on managing soldiers, how
in itself, but it’s also a chance to boost your opportunity to test part of your future role. leadership skills under of foot drill to get to plan training and the mobilisation process
confidence and develop skills that you can carry your core military The second half of the the same demanding you ready for the as well as CBRN (operating in an environment
with you into your civilian life. leadership is one skills under field week is taken up with conditions that you’d parade at the end where chemical, biological, radiological and
of the most important, but presentation and conditions. There will a six-day exercise which face on operations. of the week. This nuclear substances may be present).
planning skills are just as useful in my day job.” n
32 For more information go to www.sandhurst.mod.uk 33
your route There are four ways to become
a Territorial officer, each with a
served as a regular?
to a commission
training programme that fits Sandhurst isn’t the end of the officer
around your civilian life journey. After gaining your commission
you return to your unit to take up your
first appointment and complete post-
module 2 Module 3
Module 1 leadership skills tactical skills YOUr FirST AppOiNTmeNT
direct entrY core skills The principles of leadership and You apply the theory learned in After gaining your commission you
You might have no previous military You learn the basic soldiering management are taught over 10 Module 2 to a series of practical return to your unit to take up your first
experience, but are interested in skills which underpin the rest weekends at an RTC. You learn exercises held during a nine-day command appointment. You will be
joining the TA as an officer. You need of your training. The module is how to apply them in the field, battle camp. These include responsible for the training, welfare and
to attend an interview to decide if you taught over several weekends or and master other key skills such patrols, ambushes and other operational effectiveness of 30 soldiers.
are Army officer material before you
a two-week course at a Regional as navigation and the process of activities where you will be
start the officer training process.
Training Centre (RTC). composing and issuing orders expected to demonstrate your Module 4 FUrTHer TrAiNiNg
to your soldiers. ability to lead larger groups of royal military While taking command of your first unit,
soldiers and your understanding academy you complete the final stages of your
of basic infantry tactics. Your sandhurst (rmas) officer training. The objective is to give
performance during the camp The Territorial Commissioning you some of the skills necessary for the
unit potentiAl officer will be assessed by the exercise
staff and you will need to pass
Course takes place at the Royal
Military Academy Sandhurst and
day-to-day running of a platoon or troop,
and to give you some of the specialist
You’re already a soldier in a Territorial unit and have been
selected or have applied for officer training. As you’ve already in order to progress. You must represents the highlight of your skills that you would need to lead soldiers
completed a Recruit Selection Weekend and the Basic Recruit also make sure that you’ve officer training. You can opt to on operations. This includes how to
Training Module, you start at Module 2. Some units will only completed the AOSB Briefing complete the Course as a single organise training and what is involved
accept officer candidates who have served as soldiers first. and AOSB Main Board. block of three weeks, or you can in mobilisation – the process by which THe reJOiNiNg prOCeSS
just do the first week and return soldiers are called up to serve on If you served as a Regular officer and left within
to complete the other two at a operations. You will spend three years the past six years, becoming a Territorial is no more
later date. You must have passed with your unit before you are eligible complicated than completing a few forms. Your local
the Army Officer Selection Board to be deployed overseas. Army Careers Information Office or Territorial unit
mldp 1 mldp 2 module 3 before you can start the Course will tell you more. Former Regular soldiers who want
tA sponsored core skills leadership skills tactical skills at Sandhurst (see page 31) and to apply for a commission should rejoin as soldiers
officer This takes place over a series of
weekends and evenings in your
Once you’ve mastered the basics
of soldiering, you spend the
You can now take a leadership
role within the UOTC. You
must start no later than six months
after completing Module 3.
and follow the Unit potential Officer route.
WHAT YOU NeeD TO KNOW
You go to university having
been accepted by your chosen first year with the UOTC. The second year learning how to can also take a third module, You’re not assessed during the After you have rejoined, you will be subject to the
Territorial unit as a potential officer, module equips you with the demonstrate leadership in a preparing you to command first week as you’ll be revising same annual tests as the other members of your
but train with your UOTC. same skills you’d need as an military context. Just like the larger groups and to gain a the skills that you learned during unit. It’s particularly important to make sure that you
infantry soldier including previous module the training commission from Sandhurst. the previous modules. There are keep up with your fitness activities. Whether you are
weapons handling and how to is delivered at the weekends UOTC members are under no some fitness tests you need to rejoining as a soldier or as an officer, you will be able
live in the open, or ‘fieldcraft’. and in the evenings. You’ll be obligation to attend Sandhurst. pass, so you’ll have to make sure to keep the rank and seniority that you held during
Everything you learn has a assessed on your signals and that you achieve a good standard your time as a Regular.
military application, but some map-reading skills, but the key of fitness before you start. HOW YOU BeNeFiT
uotc officer of the skills such as first aid and part is a tactical exercise where If you pass the assessments Rejoining as a Territorial officer will give you the
cadet communication have a wider
value. You’ll also do some work
you’ll master the process by
which orders are issued and
and perform well in the final field
exercise, you will commission
opportunity to apply all your leadership and military
skills in the appropriate context. You will also enjoy
You join the UOTC at university
as an officer cadet. You should to raise your level of fitness. apply it to a simple tactical into your chosen unit. The some of the key rewards of military life, including
have at least two years left of problem. The assessments will commissioning parade marks the strong sense of camaraderie and an active
your course when you apply. all be carried out by serving a change in status from officer lifestyle, all combined with your civilian career.
soldiers and officers. cadet to Second lieutenant.
What else do
how much will i have any
will i get paid? free time left if how to find the right role
You’re paid for each quarter day i join the tA?
i need to knoW?
of training you attend. The rate is You don’t have to make a choice Units in the British Army are grouped into
based on the salary received by a between your civilian life and your
Regular officer of the same rank military responsibilities. Once you
seven categories based on the skills required to Providing expert administrative
support to every single unit around
doing a comparable job, and will get your commission, there is a do the jobs involved, and the role that each of the world is a demanding role.
increase as you move through the minimum training commitment
them plays on the battlefield Officers also serve as police officers,
From how much you get paid to serving on operations, find answers ranks. When you fulfil the annual
training commitment you also
of 19 or 27 days a year, depending
on the type of unit you join,
lawyers, educators and chaplains.
to your questions about what life as a Territorial officer involves qualify for a tax-free annual including a two-week annual
bounty. In addition, all relevant camp. Most soldiers and officers
Combat roles require officers to The Army relies on its supply chain to Officers in the Army Medical Services
expenses are paid, including travel find that it’s easy to satisfy this lead their soldiers from the front, keep its soldiers equipped and able to provide a wide range of healthcare
how long will commission and completing
further officer training.
if it can’t meet its requirements
or there’s a need for particular
to and from training and your
kit. If you join a National TA
commitment and often choose to
complete extra training to develop
often in close proximity to the
enemy. Whatever the task, being
carry out their tasks. Officers manage
that process, ensuring that support is
services to military personnel and
to working animals. They keep
training take? skills, some people may be subject unit you can claim up to a full their skills further. However, you able to think quickly and act decisively available wherever it’s needed. up to date by training alongside
It depends on you. Most training will i be called up? to compulsory mobilisation. day’s pay for travelling to and from will need to put in some extra time are vital skills. civilian counterparts.
takes place at weekends and in The Army is deployed in many Officers or officer cadets serving your training sessions. You can to complete your officer training.
the evenings so that you can fit different areas of the world with a UOTC cannot be called up. find more information on rates If you go on operations you will be
it around your civilian life and including Afghanistan. The units You or your employer can appeal of pay and potential bounties at called up to serve full time and will
Officers in engineering units have the Gathering and distributing information Military music and ceremonial events
progress at your own pace. You of the Territorial Army have a if your mobilisation would conflict armyjobs.mod.uk/benefits/pay be overseas for up to six months. job of finding solutions to practical quickly and securely gives an important give the Army an important link with
could complete the necessary key part to play, so there’s a with your parental or primary You will normally be able to take problems on the battlefield. Here advantage on the battlefield. You’ll lead its past and keep traditions alive.
modules in a few months, but chance that you’ll be asked to care responsibilities, disrupt your what if i have leave at some point during this their technical skills are as much at
a premium as their leadership skills.
the skilled, specialist soldiers who keep
the information flowing.
Officers serving in ceremonial roles
also deploy on operations.
you can normally expect to spend serve overseas. The Army will education or training, or seriously period and get a period of paid
a year to 18 months getting your always ask for volunteers first, but affect the business. a professional leave after completing your tour.
There is an extensive range of
Can i leave if it’s
which type of unit will i join? opportunities available to qualified
healthcare professionals. The TA not for me? five years on...
There are two types of Territorial unit. The unit needs: n Doctors n Dentists When you join the Territorial Why did you become a me get outside more. Now
you join will depend on your skills, the skills you n Radiographers n Pharmacists Army you nominally agree to serve TA officer? I have more responsibility
want to learn and the time you have to give. n Biomedical scientists n Nurses for a period of twelve years, but I joined as a soldier, and it’s a chance to focus on
n Veterinary surgeons you can leave at any time provided when one of the officers something different. The
regional units For more information about the you haven’t already been asked to suggested I try for a fact that it evolves with
Army Medical Services phone deploy on operations. commission I decided to you is very appealing.
Regional units recruit and train locally. No previous 0800 7311201. All calls are free. give it a go. I liked the idea What are the benefits ?
experience is necessary as all the skills relevant to
your role will be taught by the unit. Their minimum
do i have to tell of the extra challenge. No matter how important
annual training commitment is 27 days.
what are the my employer?
I went to Sandhurst and
became a troop leader five
you are in your civilian
career, being an officer
eligibility criteria? Anyone who joins the TA gives the years ago, and now I hold brings you back down to
national units To join as an officer, you must Ministry of Defence permission to the rank of Major. earth. You deal with a very
be over 18 and under 35, and a contact their employer on their How has your relationship different set of issues, and
National TA units recruit from across the UK. Some citizen of the UK, Ireland or a behalf. If you’re already a member with the TA changed? soldiers aren’t afraid to tell
National units have highly specialised roles and take Commonwealth country. You of the TA and re-engaged before The TA means different you when you’ve gone
on people with relevant expertise. Unlike Regional should also have 35 ALIS points April 2004, you’re strongly advised things to me at different wrong. It also helps you
units, members may have long distances to travel in your best seven subjects at to speak to your employer and give stages of my life. As a develop confidence to take
to get to their unit. For this reason their training GCSE and 180 UCAS tariff points the Ministry of Defence permission andreW Gilruth student it was a way to on complex problems,
commitment is shorter, at 19 days, and training only at AS and A Level, but this does to contact them. It’s best to keep Business owner / earn some money, when I simplify them and come
takes place at weekends. All travel costs are paid for. not apply if you’re already serving your employer informed of your squadron commander had an office job it helped up with a solution.
as a Territorial soldier. Territorial commitments.
chOOse YOUR ROUTe TO
a TeRRITORIal cOmmIssION
Do you think you’re ready to become a Territorial officer? Whether you’d like to get the ball
rolling or you’d just like a little more information, these are the next steps you need to take
Joining the territorial army as an
officer is a great way to give your
also an online careers office you
can visit at armyjobs.mod.uk/ the territorial offer “cOmPleTINg OffIceR
life an extra dimension. contactus, which is open from 12
noon to 10pm from Monday to
n Get good leadership and
n Be part of a team as diverse
as the society it serves TRaININg OPeNs
UP a wORld Of New
There are four main routes to a Saturday and from 12 noon to 8pm accredited by the Chartered n Take part in a wide range of
commission, depending on what on Sundays. Alternatively you can Management institute sporting activities, including
stage you’re at and how much drop into your local Army Careers n Combine the challenges and adventurous sports such as
experience you have. Take a look
at the statements below and see
which of them applies to you.
Information Office or any TA unit
and you can find these online at
rewards of Army life with your
existing civilian career
n Get paid at a competitive
mountaineering or diving
n Put your leadership skills to
the ultimate test by serving
Remember that if you have any When you think you’re ready to daily rate for all the training on operations overseas
questions you can find out more by become an officer in the Territorial you complete n Give your fitness a boost or
calling us on 08457 300 111 or by Army, you can go straight to the n Learn skills or apply your stay in shape with the Army’s
taking a look at armyjobs.mod.uk Army online application form at existing ones in a new context training programme
online. For general queries there is applicationform.armyjobs.mod.uk
I’m gOINg TO I’m alReadY I waNT TO be I seRved as
UNIveRsITY seRvINg as a a dIRecT eNTRY a RegUlaR
Ta sOldIeR OffIceR
You can join the University You may already have been the Direct entry route means as an ex-regular officer, your
officer training Corps (UOTC) identified as a Unit Potential you can start officer training leadership skill and military
when you get to university, or Officer (Unit PO) by the staff even if you haven’t had any expertise will be highly valued
become a TA Sponsored Officer at your TA unit, in which case previous military experience, by Territorial units. Depending
(TASO). Talk to the UOTC at you’ll be told how to begin provided you pass a medical on when you left the Army,
your Freshers’ Fair, or find their your application. If not, you and an initial interview. For rejoining can be as simple as
contact details at army.mod.uk/ can speak to your platoon or administrative reasons you signing a form to transfer your
UotC/joining.aspx. As a TASO, troop commander who will join as a soldier, but hold the commission to a new unit, and
you join a TA unit but do your discuss the options with you rank of Officer Cadet during you won’t have to complete any
officer training through a UOTC. and set you on the right path. your training. You can apply to further training. Drop into a
Alternatively you can train with If you’re planning to go to become a Direct Entry Officer Territorial unit or your local
any Regional or National TA unit University you should discuss online at applicationform. Army Careers Information
while you study. UOTC officer the possibility of becoming a armyjobs.mod.uk. Shortly Office to find out more. You
cadets who wish to start the TA Sponsored Officer (TASO) after you will be contacted by can find their addresses and
commissioning process should with your Permanent Staff a Deputy Brigade Commander telephone numbers online at
talk to their Company Commander. Administration Officer. or another regional contact. armyjobs.mod.uk/inyourarea
“officer training is
the best preparation
for life as a leader”
The Army divides its
roles into seven job groups,
and officers have a part to
play in all of them.
The Army welcomes people from all backgrounds. Whatever
your race, ethnic origin, gender, religion or belief, there is a role
for you in our team. No account is taken of sexual orientation,
RG/BRO/141 August 2009 social background or marital/civil partnership status; we have 100%
Produced for the Ministry of Defence by Army Recruiting Group a strict code of conduct that ensures zero tolerance of bullying, TT-COC-002403
Crown Copyright August 2009 harassment, discrimination and victimisation on any grounds.