Army recruitment campaign launched

Salisbury Journal: A recruitment campaign aims to show how the new Army Reserve is fully integrated with its regular counterpart A recruitment campaign aims to show how the new Army Reserve is fully integrated with its regular counterpart

Nearly one in four Britons are unhappy with their current career, according to research commissioned by the army.

The findings were published to coincide with the launch of a new recruitment campaign announced today by Defence Secretary Philip Hammond.

The campaign, dubbed "More than meets the eye", aims to show how the new Army Reserve is fully integrated with its regular counterpart.

Through a series of TV adverts, it hopes to capitalise on New Year's resolutions which see people wanting to transform their lives and careers.

The survey showed that 23% of people were not satisfied with their current career.

When asked what was missing, 30% said a decent salary, 27% said excellent training and personal development, 25% said a challenging and exciting role, 35% said UK and overseas travel, and 18% said getting paid while getting qualifications.

The research, carried out by OnePoll on behalf of the army, surveyed 2,000 people in December 2013.

It also revealed a lack of awareness about life in the army.

Of those polled, more than a quarter (28%) thought Army Reserves would not get paid, while 40% did not think a commitment to the reserves was flexible, and 40% also thought signing up to the army was a lifetime commitment.

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said: "We are restructuring the army to ensure regular and reserve soldiers are fully integrated into one force, training and working alongside each other.

"In 2014, the army will continue to recruit new full-time soldiers and look to increase the trained strength of part-time soldiers.

"Army Reserves will be critical to mounting military operations in the future and we intend to grow the number significantly by 2018."

Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Peter Wall, said: "The army offers people unique opportunities for challenge and adventure, both at home and overseas, during peacetime and on operations.

"It develops personal qualities that are key to success in any walk of life: leadership, judgement, determination, and physical stamina."

January will also see the launch of a new simplified online application form, a more streamlined medical clearance process, and an army fitness app, making it easier for potential recruits to join, said the MoD.

Trooper Marcus Cribb, 23, who is in full-time higher education studying project management but has been in the Army Reserves for four years, features in the new TV ad.

Tpr Cribb, from Weymouth, Dorest, w orks as a Challenger 2 driver part-time for the army.

He said : "Being in the army has opened up so many opportunities that I wouldn't have achieved elsewhere. I've gained new skills and had the opportunity to travel to Switzerland, all of which has been done part-time.

"My university has been supportive of my role in the army alongside my studies and I'm keen to bring all of the skills and qualifications that I'm gaining in the army to my studies and future full-time career.

"Not many people realise that reserves have all the same opportunities as regular soldiers, but we do. I would encourage anyone looking for an exciting challenge and new opportunity outside of their day job to join."

Mr Hammond said the recruitment drive would take the number of reservists from just over 19,000 to 30,000 between now and 2018.

Appearing on BBC Breakfast, he said the campaign aimed to show what the army is about post-Afghanistan.

He told the programme: "The purpose of the campaign that we're launching today is to dispel forever the myth that somehow the army isn't recruiting.

"Yes that the regular army will be smaller in the future than it has been in the past, and yes there will be one further round of redundancies unfortunately, but that does not mean that the army is not recruiting."

Under plans set out in 2010 the size of the army is being cut by 20,000 to 82,000 by 2020.

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