Be Honest, Would You.........

employ a reservist?

I'm expecting some of the usual old salts to come on with their usual retorts :sleepy3:. I'm also expecting some of the witty replies we all welcome.:laughing3:

However, in all honesty the question is a serious one. Bearing in mind the news of the increase in reserve forces by 100% would you employ one. Would you pay for a reservist to do a job for you with everything that comes along with it?

Give your reasons.
Would you employ an Army Reservist but not a Naval one, or vice versa. No need to ask if anyone would employ a crab because we all know we couldn't afford the holidays and bat boys.

But come on, would you?


War Hero
Book Reviewer
I would employ anybody, regardless of what they get up to in their spare time. Putting on a uniform at weekends doesn't make you special or any different to all my other (hypothetical) employees who volunteer their spare time to do whatever they like.
We had a handful of reservists at my old place of work, myself being one of them. No RNR but we had a crab and a few TA bods, plus a lad still in his reserve liability period for the booties.

One of the TA lads deployed on Herrick and quite frankly it totally fucked up the entire business for a year. It's a small company with a very specialist niche product, in order to fill the gap we had to bring in a temp from the States. As our best salesman we noticed a significant drop in sales for the year he was away, almost 10ish %. In cash flow terms this worked out as about £600,000. Added to this the extortionate salary we had to pay the Yank replacement.

On the flip side, when the lad returned he was considerably better at his job and we got a free first aider at work, however he'd got the bug and volunteered to go on another tour pretty much straight away.

So basically we paid well over 600 grand so matey boy could go and drive an HGV around Bastion for 6 months.

The Jack ****.
In addition to my last, based on my experience above, I realised that there would be absolutely zero chance of me deploying while working for that company.

I'd actually been offered an incredibly sexy job, the sort of opportunity that comes up once in a lifetime and only for a very select few fortunate people. I seriously weighed up the chances of going, but deep down I knew that my absence from the firm would seriously **** things up for everyone.

Now I'm self employed I can pretty much do what I want, but back then it definitely wasn't happening. If you work for a small to medium sized company, you seriously need to look at how your absence will affect those around you and your long term career prospects.

Unfortunately I missed the boat for that adventure, my grandchildren will have to suffice with gash dits about banging whores in Asia.
:neutral:If I was in business , I would employ all the reservists and nubile women I could!!!! . Then again I wouldn't be a successful business man for very long!!:grin:
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It will all depend on what the Government is offering as compensation for employers to lose their valuable (major presumption there, like) employee for an extended period on deployment. Two weeks away for bounty payment etc etc can be covered in general holiday time so why that should be considered special I have no idea. 6-9 months out is similar to maternity period so again, can be addressed through the legislation. What is important is that reserve forces are not being prejudiced against just because of their choice to do their service that way. It is no different from refusing to employ lumpy jumpers on the possibility they may get knocked up - it is unacceptable discrimination. The fact that it is a choice they entered into is not a warranted excuse either for declining to employ them.

The disproportionate effect it could have on a small to medium sized company is an unavoidable consideration though - for both parties. It just means that the reserve sailor / soldier / aircraft-person needs to be upfront on their application so it is not hidden, and if they suspect prejudice then they need to think about whether it is worth the effort of calling foul.

It would be interesting to see if there are any statistics that show what proportion of current reserves are employed, self-employed, not employed or other.
It would be interesting to see if there are any statistics that show what proportion of current reserves are employed, self-employed, not employed or other.
Just taking a wild guesstimation here, but based on the lads who deployed from my last unit, most were students or unemployed anyway. The few who actually had jobs worked for massive city firms like KPMG who could easily cope with the loss.


Book Reviewer
Probably not and thats not because I have anything personal against reserves. During my time I had very little to zero contact with any of them.

Reading threads over the years I've just gained the impression that everythings such a drama where reserves are concerned. And the fact when they do bugger off, I would be left to pick up the slack similar to when oppos with the ability of Eddie the Eagle swanned off to the RN ski championships.

And lastly they would probably think we have a special bond and expect a LWE and make & break every week. I can only imagine more tears, tantrums and drama.

'Send in the next candidate Miss Moneypenny'
Reading threads over the years I've just gained the impression that everythings such a drama where reserves are concerned.
That's a big fat fair one.

In my experience, the lads with the worst badmin were invariably the reservists. They'd come to work expecting to have their careers micro managed like they do in the mob. When things didn't go to plan, it was massive sad ons all round. A monday morning after a weekend ex was basically a write off because they'd be knackered. They'd always be stressed because they were managing two careers and obviously had added strain at home.

Of course there were some benefits, like free first aiders at work, but let's be honest, that's a 300 quid course, as an employer it's hardly a massive favour to me.

I preferred the lads who'd just crack on with work and not constantly be looking for the DS solution to everything. Sometimes the last thing you need is some twat who thinks he is Alan Sugar just because he's attended a two day leadership course.
I would not look at the £100.00 per day as compensation. Basically your employer has up to £100 per day which he can claim to pay the difference in salary between you and the person who replaces you. Your employer has to justify the cost before it is claimed. Your employer also has your salary with which to pay your replacement so in reality they have whatever they paid you plus up to another £100.00 per day to pay for a replacement plus advertising and training costs.

So when you look at it your employer has a lot of hassle finding your temporary replacement and is only able to claim back their costs. They do not gain in any way.

As for your comments SGT PBD, that's all very well but what happens when they are required for more than 2 weeks. When their spare time impacts on your time?
I would employ anybody, regardless of what they get up to in their spare time. Putting on a uniform at weekends doesn't make you special or any different to all my other (hypothetical) employees who volunteer their spare time to do whatever they like.
Easily said by an 'employee' therefore just as easily disregarded as a serious response.

It's not just a simple case of 'what they volunteer to do in their spare time' as any Reservist is liable to be mobilised leaving a gap in the workforce, begging the question: What businesses can cope with such a gap(s)?

From recent Government statistics, HOC Publication SN/EP/6078 "Small businesses and the UK economy" 19 Dec 2012

• In 2012, there were 4.8 million businesses in the UK.

• Over 99% of these businesses were small or medium sized businesses, employing less than 250 people.

• 4.6 million or 96% of all businesses were micro-businesses – employing 0-9 people.

*These micro-businesses employ a total of 7.75 million folk. (effectively almost a third of those working within the private sector!)

I'd suggest that the majority of those micro businesses just could not cope - see 2DD's shotgun factory example, and ours certainly couldn't cope either. Even genuine sickness absences impose a fair old strain on the rest of those working within such small teams.

The pool for Reservists is thus restricted to the large employers in the Private Sector and those drawing their income (or benefits) from the vast Public Sector.

As the majority of employers, public & private, have slimmed and trimmed throughout this recesssion so the largest pool would appear to be those fit/young enough who are drawing benefits.

Forgive me for daring to suggest it but conscription from that pool seems to scream out as one solution.


As a large business owner where the loss of capacity could be covered easily? Absolutely. As a small business owner operating under a stricter budget on leaner manpower, absolutely not.
I worked a weekend job with a reservist, there were good and bad points. The good was that he was useless at the job so it made life easier for everyone else as we didn't have to go round mopping up his mistakes and checking if he is in the correct place every half hour. The bad was that logistically only one person could be off at one time, so although he wasn't strictly using his annual leave it meant that his commitments dictated when everyone else was allowed to be off. As it was only a weekend job it was tricky to find someone to occasionally fill in the gaps I guess, not sure but I know he was never replaced when he was off and I missed out on lots of things I would have liked to attend as I couldn't get the time off. From a co-worker point of view it is irritating when you have to make 'sacrifices' for the vocation another person chooses to pursue- although such is life. Having been a manager for a bit as long as the necessary support was in place and it was easy to access then I wouldn't have a problem, if it caused major problems in the business running smoothly and for the rest of the team then I would think twice. Not because I didn't support their choice and commend them for getting involved with it, just from a practical and stress-level point of view.
I used to work with a reservist! I have to say things went a lot better when she was off on deployment than when she was around!

That being said we do have reservists working here in the boneyard and when they go off on deployment we just have to suck it up ... that being said we are a big organisation.
See some advance info from ARRSE

<<...We have, additionally, already implemented measures to streamline and incentivise the process by which those leaving the Regular forces can transfer to the volunteer reserve – with accelerated processing, passporting of medical and security clearances and retention of rank, as well as a “signing-on” bounty of £5,000 for ex-regulars and for direct entry officers joining the Army Reserve.*

Mr Speaker, the support of employers is crucial to delivering the Future Reserve Forces. We seek to strengthen Defence’s relationships with employers so that they are open and predictable.

The White Paper sets out how we will make liability for call up more predictable; make it easier for them to claim the financial assistance that is already available; increase financial support for SME’s by introducing a £500 per month, per Reservist, financial award to small and medium enterprises, when their reservist employees are mobilised**; and improve civilian-recognised training accreditation to help employers to benefit from reserve training and skills.

The White Paper signals a step change in Defence’s offer to Employers. I urge them to take up this challenge. In turn, by building on the Armed Forces Covenant with the introduction of the Corporate Covenant, we will ensure that reservist employers get the recognition they deserve.

However, while Defence is fully committed to an open and collaborative relationship with employers, it is essential that the interests of reservists are protected. Dismissal of Reservists on the grounds of their mobilised Reserve Service is already illegal. We will legislate in the forthcoming Defence Reform Bill to ensure access to Employment Tribunals in claims for unfair dismissal on grounds of Reserve Service, without a qualifying employment period.

Mr Speaker, the job we are asking our reservists to do is changing; the way we organise and train them will also have to change. That will impact on both force structure, and basing laydown.

The force structures and roles of the maritime and air reserves will remain broadly similar to now, although increased in size and capability...>>

[News] Statement on Army Reserves, 3 July 12.30pm (est.)

*A nice earner for those so inclined.

**Aye, but those micro-Businesses I mentioned earlier would still be V. hard pressed to gap one of their 'Nine or less' employee slots.
The service will either pay contributions into the AFPS, or will pay the firm's contribution into the company pension scheme. No probs really.
Over 10 years a private could potentially build up £1,770 per year in pension, payable at state retirement age. The figure for a captain could be £2,420 per year. :eek:mg:
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