• Thanks for stopping by. Logging in to a registered account will remove all generic ads. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

NCM vs Officer enrollment

L

lover

Guest
I recently accepted a posting as an Infantrymen, and while I am very excited to be going and serving my country, I, however, had originally applied to become an officer.  I do have a (4 year) degree, but was told I lacked the proven leadership skills and was told if they were to move me on I likely would not pass the next boards. This lead me to beleive that it was as much a personal decision on the career councillor's behalf as it was cf policy, which leaves me a little dismayed as I was not given the chance to even prove myself. I am happy with my decision to join as an NCM, but am wondering if I can put my education to better use and have a chance later on to become an officer, if I so desire.  Appreciate any input.
Thanks
 
L

lover

Guest
Well my point more clearly is this:  by entering the CF as an NCM have I shut the door on the possibility of becoming an officer? 
 

ark

Full Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
lover said:
Appreciate any input.

As someone already pointed out, it is possible to become a Commissioned Officer from the ranks. Don't be discouraged for now and I'm sure you will get some valuable experience as a NCM. There is a thread discussing pros/cons of getting "up from the ranks"

http://forums.army.ca/forums/threads/23230.0.html
 
L

lover

Guest
Thanks guys.  I still haven't decided if thats even the route I am going to take, but at least I feel better knowing that I haven't limited myself in my very early military career. 
 

Forgotten_Hero

Full Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Well my point more clearly is this:  by entering the CF as an NCM have I shut the door on the possibility of becoming an officer?

Actually, IMO, it'll help your chances of becomming an officer. You'll be able to go on a leadership course as an NCM and prove your leadership abilities throughout service as an NCM.
 
Reaction score
0
Points
0
When I was on BOTP there was an entire platoon of people who were commissioned from the ranks....so get some experience, give it a few years and apply through your career manager...especially for infantry, there were lots of CFR positions.
 

TheCheez

Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
ex-NCMs generally make good officers because they know what life is like for those that they're leading and what NCMs want and expect from an officer.

You haven't limited yourself don't worry about it.
 

Lumber

Army.ca Veteran
Donor
Reaction score
42
Points
530
Future Prodigy said:
Is this a common theme - this being to enter as an NCM with a 4 year Honors degree?

There are a lot of NCMs with degree and even multiple degrees. How many earned them before hand and how many earned them while serving I can't say, but a lot seem to get them while serving, and good on them!
 

ontheedge

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
So I'm not a spring chicken and it's difficult to get into any direct entry officer role; my initial field of interest rarely hires, so I moved to another field that also rarely hires; and another.

Now I'm thinking I should just go in as an NCM despite my university and "senior management" experience Civvie side.  Something in an NCM administrative role, just to get my BQM going and so on.  Every month that goes by I'm losing precious time.

Any thoughts? 

An interesting side-effect is that entry-level NCM jobs pay like 20% higher than officer cadets.  Anyone explain that one to me?

TIA.
 

garb811

Army.ca Veteran
Staff member
Directing Staff
Reaction score
7
Points
530
ontheedge said:
So I'm not a spring chicken and it's difficult to get into any direct entry officer role; my initial field of interest rarely hires, so I moved to another field that also rarely hires; and another.

Now I'm thinking I should just go in as an NCM despite my university and "senior management" experience Civvie side.  Something in an NCM administrative role, just to get my BQM going and so on.  Every month that goes by I'm losing precious time.

Any thoughts?
IF you are lucky enough to get in, even as "just" a NCM, you're going to be rudely surprised at the backgrounds and education levels of some of the NCMs in the CAF, particularly in the PRes. Whether or not your Plan E is a good one is a question nobody can answer but you. I will say that in my experience, people who join a trade just to get in, typically don't do all that well, primarily because they realize that their heart isn't really in it because they aren't doing what they actually want to do. If your ultimate plan is to get in and then try to commission into one of the officer occupations you've been unsuccessful at getting into so far, that's a route of potential disappointment as well because there is no guarantee that is ever going to happen.

An interesting side-effect is that entry-level NCM jobs pay like 20% higher than officer cadets.  Anyone explain that one to me?

TIA.
Are you still looking at going PRes? If so, where are you getting your numbers on pay because that certainly isn't the case (Pte - $96.06 a day vs OCdt - $105.46 a day). Even in the Reg Force, it is only ROTP OCdts who make less than a Pte, which considering they are getting their schooling for free isn't a bad deal...
 

ontheedge

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Wow thanks, this is helpful. I thought most ncm were young and without university degrees generally.
 

Blackadder1916

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
467
Points
1,030
ontheedge said:
Wow thanks, this is helpful. I thought most ncm were young and without university degrees generally.

These figures are years old.  My assumption is that an even higher proportion of NCMs have a post-secondary credential now.

https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/75-001-x/2008107/article/10657-eng.htm#a4
The steady increase in earnings also coincided with rising levels of education. To meet the high technical demands of modern warfare, more recognized training and education are necessary. In 2002, more than half of CF members aged 25 or older had a postsecondary degree or diploma (88% of officers; 37% of non-commissioned members in the regular forces, 63% in the reserves). In 1988, 19% of regular force personnel had a postsecondary degree or diploma and 26% had less than high school graduation (Strike 1989). By 2002, postsecondary graduation had increased to 48% and less than high school graduation had fallen to 7%. Even with the increase, postsecondary graduation among CF personnel was lower (53%) than for civilian workers aged 25 or older (59%). However, members of the reserves had higher rates (69%), reflecting on-campus recruiting.
 

BeyondTheNow

Moderator
Staff member
Directing Staff
Mentor
Reaction score
5
Points
530
ontheedge said:
Wow thanks, this is helpful. I thought most ncm were young and without university degrees generally.

Many NCMs are educated past high-school. Also, as you may have seen on these boards, book-smart doesn’t equate to intelligence...
 

Eye In The Sky

Army.ca Fixture
Reaction score
440
Points
910
ontheedge said:
Wow thanks, this is helpful. I thought most ncm were young and without university degrees generally.

Yup.  Some of us down in steerage have years of experience to go along with "more than high school".  ;)  I've had Jnr NCMs at the lowest end of the ranks (Pte/Tpr) who've had one or more degress who struggled with what to most people is very simple training and tasks.  Like, a bed layout or learning to drive a standard. 

My  :2c: on what trade to pick and the NCM or Officer debate;  pick something you think you will be happy in for the duration of your career.  All of the occupation transfer programs are competitive and going from NCM to Officer is never, ever a sure thing.  Don't go NCM 'to just get your foot in the door'.  If you're waiting and not getting picked up, maybe consider talking to the CFRC to find out what, if anything, can be done to make your file more competitive.  CFAT scores are extremely important and hold a lot of weight on the overall score an applicant achieves. 

 

ontheedge

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Eye In The Sky said:
Yup.  Some of us down in steerage have years of experience to go along with "more than high school".  ;)  I've had Jnr NCMs at the lowest end of the ranks (Pte/Tpr) who've had one or more degress who struggled with what to most people is very simple training and tasks.  Like, a bed layout or learning to drive a standard. 

My  :2c: on what trade to pick and the NCM or Officer debate;  pick something you think you will be happy in for the duration of your career.  All of the occupation transfer programs are competitive and going from NCM to Officer is never, ever a sure thing.  Don't go NCM 'to just get your foot in the door'.  If you're waiting and not getting picked up, maybe consider talking to the CFRC to find out what, if anything, can be done to make your file more competitive.  CFAT scores are extremely important and hold a lot of weight on the overall score an applicant achieves.

The way I understood the recruiting process, if a person has a university degree, they are told they can go into officer roles if they want, and many choose that route once they're told.  Perhaps there are some who also go NCM route.

For us ol' folks over 40 years old, waiting 2 or 3 years is not like waiting from age 22 to 24.  Our geriatric bodies are getting more wear and tear every year; BQM at 40 is one thing, at 44 I think it gets even harder.  47... I dunno, that's starting to get exceptional.

Most of us who join the forces do so to make a difference, learn skills, be around good people, and most importantly wear the Forces badge with pride...  Your signature line is kind of ironic, since you are saying we should pick a trade we like, and your signature jokes about not liking what you do...

For me, one important thing is leadership training, which I know is focused at the Officer level, maybe NCM too for those showing the interest...
 

blacktriangle

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
173
Points
630
Eye In The Sky said:
I've had Jnr NCMs at the lowest end of the ranks (Pte/Tpr) who've had one or more degress who struggled with what to most people is very simple training and tasks.  Like, a bed layout or learning to drive a standard. 

Iltis?  ;D

OP - For whatever it's worth, the military has a way of taking the coolest of jobs and making them suck in one regard or another.

At one point, I literally had what I'd consider one of the coolest jobs in the world. Did I like it? Not by the end of it.

Whatever path you take, just keep in mind that things may not turn out the way you expect. It's not easy to become an officer once you are an NCM. You have a better chance off the street, IMO.

 

ontheedge

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
standingdown said:
It's not easy to become an officer once you are an NCM. You have a better chance off the street, IMO.

Probably trade specific, no?. e.g. Intel seems to like officers coming up the ranks from NCM; whereas some others seem open...
 

blacktriangle

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
173
Points
630
Intelligence is usually referred to as "Int" and not "Intel" in Canada. I can't comment on current Int Branch hiring, but I've seen all kinds. Everything from the ultra-experienced to those who would have a tough time holding down a job at Walmart. YMMV.

 

Blackadder1916

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
467
Points
1,030
ontheedge said:
. . .

For me, one important thing is leadership training, which I know is focused at the Officer level, maybe NCM too for those showing the interest...

Again you demonstrate that you have barely a faint understanding of the military.  Leadership (and leadership training) is not the unique domain of officers.  To generalize, the majority of CF members (i.e. NCMs) are directly supervised, controlled, coordinated and managed - in other words, led - by other NCMs.  WOs and NCOs are also often the instructors responsible for most officers' primary "leadership training" (BMOQ and phase training, which is sometimes the only structured leadership training they may receive), as well as being responsible for "informal" leadership guidance of new officers.  How does the CF develop those non-officer leaders - for promotion to certain NCM ranks, completion of formal leadership courses are required.
 
Top