Author Topic: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative  (Read 8389 times)

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Offline FSTO

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #25 on: April 07, 2018, 10:37:33 »
When I got posted to an RSS position at a Naval Reserve Division, my unit had 160 sailors.

We've been one of the top recruiting units in the entire Naval Reserve, and in 3 years, we've recruited 105 sailors.

And today, our unit strength is now... 185.

How's that for retention.

Used to be 3 to 1 (recruit 3 to retain 1) but now its up to 4 to 1 or more? Damn.

I have no idea what the solution is to this. I know the mantra at sea now seems to be "Work Hard, Work Harder!" But when I joined there seemed to be more opportunities for relaxation such as sailing 1 in 4 whenever we weren't on an exercise.


Offline PuckChaser

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #26 on: April 07, 2018, 10:39:19 »
That's the problem with our Reserve system as it is. Either it's there to support the RegF by providing as close as possible training and readiness to the RegF but on the Thursday Night/2 weekend a month model, or it provides a separate force that will require extra training to bring them up to speed on all the stuff that had to be cut out.

A lot of the problem is the PRes wants its cake and to eat it too. Its not sustainable to force the same training that the RegF does onto someone who's only able to commit a couple weeks out of their summer vacation to train. Yeah, there's lots of training the RegF does that's redundant, but even cutting all that wouldn't make up for the shortfall in time, especially for highly technical trades.

Offline Chief Engineer

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #27 on: April 07, 2018, 10:40:27 »
Its interesting to note that only 55% of Kingston Class sailors took their transfer to the regular force under the "Big idea" all transfers at rank. It actually gutted the Naval Reserve not that we were in trouble already. It certainly didn't help.
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Offline Eye In The Sky

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #28 on: April 07, 2018, 13:23:09 »
I'm also not so sure that restricting leave is such a bad thing either.  I was somewhat shocked during my last sea tour when I saw virtually the entire ship's company disappear to hotels as soon as we got into port.  The result was that sailors were not bonding socially and more importantly, they weren't looking after each other.  Would the sailors that have died in hotel rooms recently, still be alive if they had been on board and looked after by their mates?

There is the problem;  people (like you) trying to tell adults what to do on their off time.  I 'disappear' into my hotel room when I am away sometimes.  I've just spent X amount of time in the rental car, in the briefing, on the plane and then back for the de-brief, and back in the rental car, with the same dozen'ish people.

I'm an adult and I like to be able to make my own adult decisions.  That 'privilege'  ::) is disappearing in the CAF with the snr leaderships CYA 'group policy' orders, like 2 beer / day on ex or deployment (the latest one down from the RCAF CofC).    Again, it's not that having more than 2 beer a day is important to people, but being treated like a ******* adult certainly is.  Although I don't drink, I'm in agreement with them, all of them, on that point.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2018, 13:33:20 by Eye In The Sky »
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Offline FSTO

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #29 on: April 07, 2018, 14:17:20 »
There is the problem;  people (like you) trying to tell adults what to do on their off time.  I 'disappear' into my hotel room when I am away sometimes.  I've just spent X amount of time in the rental car, in the briefing, on the plane and then back for the de-brief, and back in the rental car, with the same dozen'ish people.

I'm an adult and I like to be able to make my own adult decisions.  That 'privilege'  ::) is disappearing in the CAF with the snr leaderships CYA 'group policy' orders, like 2 beer / day on ex or deployment (the latest one down from the RCAF CofC).    Again, it's not that having more than 2 beer a day is important to people, but being treated like a ******* adult certainly is.  Although I don't drink, I'm in agreement with them, all of them, on that point.

Back in the day when we weren't being paid as much (pre 1997?) and especially if you had a family, not too many guys could afford a hotel in a foregin port. Thus most of us would pre action in the ship, go ashore and hit the bars and then head back to the ship for the night. There were no force protection needs back then so the duty watch was fairly small compared to now so everyone would be able to get a full weekend ashore once in a while.
I was inland at a NRD from 95-99 so, like Pusser, I was surprised at my first time in PH in 99 that the entire WR went to hotel rooms as soon as we were secured. No bit a socializing, no relaxing with your mates, nothing. Just disappearing to Waikiki Beach and not to be seen again until we were getting ready to sail on Monday morning.

Not to say that there was anything wrong with the culture change but it was a shock to me.

Now to the being treated like adults thing. When every action of the CO, Fleet Commander, Formation Admiral, CRCN and CDS is being scrutinized with a fine tooth comb and even the most minor of indiscretion is a basis for firing then for sure they will micromanage and curtail all forms of fun! Until the pendulum of puritanical righteousness resets itself we can expect more not less curtailment of enjoyment at sea or on exercise.

Offline Halifax Tar

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #30 on: April 07, 2018, 16:30:48 »
Now to the being treated like adults thing. When every action of the CO, Fleet Commander, Formation Admiral, CRCN and CDS is being scrutinized with a fine tooth comb and even the most minor of indiscretion is a basis for firing then for sure they will micromanage and curtail all forms of fun! Until the pendulum of puritanical righteousness resets itself we can expect more not less curtailment of enjoyment at sea or on exercise.

Calling BS on this.  I was away from the RCN when the couple of incidents barely made a ripple in news outside the coasts.  In fact what made more of a ripple to double double Canadians was the asinine knee jerk reactions that followed by our senior leadership.

We had an anti alcohol guy at them helm then and this was an excuse to inflict his personal beliefs on our organization. 

As for the health of the RCN recruiting and retention, if working for the RCN is so great why is this even a topic?  Until this org tackles the hard issues like culture and leadership I expect more of the same.
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Offline Oldgateboatdriver

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #31 on: April 07, 2018, 16:48:13 »
Unfortunately, Halifax tar, there have ever been two things only that manage to change Navy culture or leadership approach:

(1) War; or
(2) Fleet wide mutinies (sometimes known as "incidents" in Canada).

And I agree to call BS on FSTO's view - I was about to do the same. But in my case, it was going to be based on the fact that the senior "management" of the Navy/CAF being scrutinized with even minor indiscretion leading to firing is something that they slowly but surely brought upon themselves through their past failure to forget that they were once sailors/airmen/soldiers and react to the civilian leaders by cowering instead of simply telling them off - its life in the military and IF the culprit went too far, then their CO would handle it - not them. If they had consistently given the civilian at DND, including ministers and above the line: "These are soldiers - not boy scouts. If they crossed the line, they will be disciplined at the appropriate level of command. And, that's the end of it.", they would not be in the fix they find themselves in now, where they have to bow down to every stupid request from civilian for political correctness and human perfection. 

Offline FSTO

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #32 on: April 07, 2018, 17:02:48 »
I may have mis-wrote.

I'm in no way condoning the actions of senior leadership to Cover Their Asses. I was just pointing out that they seem to have been unable to display backbone, let people in positions of responsibility below them do their jobs and defend those decisions to our political masters. And until the pendulum swings back we'll continue to see more of the same.

Offline Eye In The Sky

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #33 on: April 07, 2018, 17:06:33 »

Now to the being treated like adults thing. When every action of the CO, Fleet Commander, Formation Admiral, CRCN and CDS is being scrutinized with a fine tooth comb and even the most minor of indiscretion is a basis for firing then for sure they will micromanage and curtail all forms of fun! Until the pendulum of puritanical righteousness resets itself we can expect more not less curtailment of enjoyment at sea or on exercise.

I'll just quickly add, I didn't think FSTO wrote that in the sense he agreed with it, I thought he was just identifying the State of the Union we face today.  As I mentioned, the RCAF or at least 1 CAD has recently been ordered 2 beer per man/woman per day on Ex or deployment.  So basically, if I go to Wainright to support Maple Clusterfuck again (which, for the record I hope I do NOT), 2 beer per day.  Even on a no-fly day.  In Canada.  Even though we have 12 hour bottle to throttle/8 hours before duty rules in the Div Orders.  This came out after the VIP flight that, IIRC, the VCDS and CFCWO were both on that resulted in a recent news fiasco.

 :dunno:
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Offline Halifax Tar

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #34 on: April 07, 2018, 17:09:18 »
I may have mis-wrote.

I'm in no way condoning the actions of senior leadership to Cover Their Asses. I was just pointing out that they seem to have been unable to display backbone, let people in positions of responsibility below them do their jobs and defend those decisions to our political masters. And until the pendulum swings back we'll continue to see more of the same.

FTSO I may have come across inappropriately harsh.  My apologies if so. 
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Offline Dimsum

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #35 on: April 07, 2018, 17:12:04 »
I'll just quickly add, I didn't think FSTO wrote that in the sense he agreed with it, I thought he was just identifying the State of the Union we face today.  As I mentioned, the RCAF or at least 1 CAD has recently been ordered 2 beer per man/woman per day on Ex or deployment.  So basically, if I go to Wainright to support Maple Clusterfuck again (which, for the record I hope I do NOT), 2 beer per day.  Even on a no-fly day.  In Canada.  Even though we have 12 hour bottle to throttle/8 hours before duty rules in the Div Orders.  This came out after the VIP flight that, IIRC, the VCDS and CFCWO were both on that resulted in a recent news fiasco.

 :dunno:

Wait a minute, I thought the rule was for TD/ops outside Canada?  Does that mean that whenever 407 Sqn goes to Greenwood on TD for sims, that rule still applies?!  I surely hope not. 

Anyways, that's quite a split from the original thread. 

« Last Edit: April 07, 2018, 17:14:56 by Dimsum »
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Offline Halifax Tar

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #36 on: April 07, 2018, 17:15:42 »
Unfortunately, Halifax tar, there have ever been two things only that manage to change Navy culture or leadership approach:

(1) War; or
(2) Fleet wide mutinies (sometimes known as "incidents" in Canada).

And I agree to call BS on FSTO's view - I was about to do the same. But in my case, it was going to be based on the fact that the senior "management" of the Navy/CAF being scrutinized with even minor indiscretion leading to firing is something that they slowly but surely brought upon themselves through their past failure to forget that they were once sailors/airmen/soldiers and react to the civilian leaders by cowering instead of simply telling them off - its life in the military and IF the culprit went too far, then their CO would handle it - not them. If they had consistently given the civilian at DND, including ministers and above the line: "These are soldiers - not boy scouts. If they crossed the line, they will be disciplined at the appropriate level of command. And, that's the end of it.", they would not be in the fix they find themselves in now, where they have to bow down to every stupid request from civilian for political correctness and human perfection.

I truly hope I am not in the RCN should it ever engage in a shooting war again.  I’d hope in the long run we’d be victorious but the beginning will be a blood letting while the organization sheds the shackles of careerists and uniformed bureaucrats.
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Offline Eye In The Sky

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #37 on: April 07, 2018, 17:35:42 »
Wait a minute, I thought the rule was for TD/ops outside Canada?  Does that mean that whenever 407 Sqn goes to Greenwood on TD for sims, that rule still applies?!  I surely hope not. 

Anyways, that's quite a split from the original thread.

I didn't see the order, just got briefed on it verbally from the ATF WO last month when we were *co-located*.  *any/all exercises and deployments* is the way it was breifed to me.  It was the big reason we left before the Intl Party from what I could tell.

Everything happens for a reason.

Sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.

Offline FSTO

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #38 on: April 07, 2018, 17:56:10 »
FTSO I may have come across inappropriately harsh.  My apologies if so.

No worries.

Offline Monsoon

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Re: RCN seeks Candidates for Skilled Re-Enrolment Initiative
« Reply #39 on: April 08, 2018, 08:43:58 »
When I got posted to an RSS position at a Naval Reserve Division, my unit had 160 sailors.

We've been one of the top recruiting units in the entire Naval Reserve, and in 3 years, we've recruited 105 sailors.

And today, our unit strength is now... 185.

How's that for retention.
NAVRES' long-term formation-wide attrition trend is a very consistent 50% per five years (releases, CTs, etc, etc included). I'd guess your "missing" 25-odd people in the last three years are attributable to Big Idea CTs, though it's hard to speak to the demographic/economic trends at work in a single unit over a short time span.

Part of the function of an armed force (and its reserve in particular) is to retain the institutional capability to scale up manpower very very quickly. Skilled re-enrolment schemes, "retention" focus and extended retirement ages just to retain core peacetime force size are all tactical-level fudges that fail to address the strategic force generation failure. We like to sneer at the US military for running a very training-light force generation model that churns personnel, but I'd argue that's not the "wrong" approach. The real trade-off is the cost of running a system like that, and the compromise we make in the interests of saving money is to try to squeeze retention and to multi-purposes our TES PYs.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2018, 11:42:27 by Monsoon »