CIS Update - Is This Accurate?

Discussion in 'Joining Up - Royal Navy Recruiting' started by AB111, Sep 29, 2016.

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  1. Hi there.

    I went to the London AFCO today, to ask about joining as a CIS. Now, before anyone says anything, I've read absolutely every thread I could find about CIS on this forum, so I'm well-prepared in my view. Thus this post.

    Because when I went to have a chat about it, I was told that CIS was split into (ET) - Engineering Technician and (WE) - Weapon Engineering. However, throughout the many threads on this forum, CIS has been referred to as CIS(ET)(WE). Meaning you'd study both "fields". Yet the AFCO seemed to say otherwise! Is this true? Is he simply not up to speed perhaps? He definitely meant that each sub-specialization was different, because he urged me to join the (WE) side, due to it supposedly being a sort of "two in one" and has more/better transferable skills. So I'm really unsure about what I'd choose now. All along, I thought I only had to pick between the CIS surface fleet and CIS submarine service. So when I got home, I hurried to create an account to share this with you guys! The guy I spoke with was a former CIS of some sort as well I think and while I thought he might simply not have followed with the times, since the change from OM(C) to CIS, he did mention he has a colleague who's currently a CIS as well; although he wasn't present sadly. Yet he IS a recruiter, so I expect him to know.

    Lastly, when I read through the brochure (it was much more appealing than what the Army AFCO gave me, sorry army), CIS was listed as part of the Warfare branch... So now I'm just confused. I assume they didn't update things yet, but at the same time, it did seem to be *current*. The magazine even said that CIS(SM) learn Morse code with flashing lights! This is contrary to everything I've read on this forum, regarding CIS moving away from the Warfare branch and into the Engineering branch. But what's more, this worries me because I assume the eyesight requirements might potentially be VA1, instead of VA2 (as I've understood it on the forum), as the VA1 eyesight requirements in the Warfare branch apparently stem from their traditional role of communicating with flags and lights. What's going on?

    In addition, for those interested (and since CIS threads need an update), I was told that the waiting time to join CIS (provided you go through all the tests smoothly), is around 3-4 months! Epic.

    Slightly off-topic, I also asked about CTs and was told that dual-nationality (not that I have it) was no problem. Heck, he claimed he even knew (or heard of, I'm not sure) of people with 3 nationalities being CTs lol. If he indeed did mean CTs and not CIS, this yet again goes against the grain of everything I've read. Although it's quite a boost if you're not simply British I guess.

    I would really appreciate any feedback/advice, cheers! :).
  2. wave_dodger

    wave_dodger War Hero Book Reviewer

    CIS derives from the older Communications branch, which was a sub-branch of Warfare. Thats now changed and CIS is a sub-branch of WE as there is far more commonality.

    CIS is a sub-spec of WE, so it is ET(WE)(CIS)..... You're not choosing to be ET or CIS in that sense.

    If you choose to stream CIS after common training you will move away from 'true' engineering to CIS systems engineering/administration etc. The difference between General Service and Submarine derivations is largely equipment fits and deployment patterns.

    CT's have to be UK Nationals, in cases of dual nationality its case by case I believe. I'm sure a CT will come along and clarify that.
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  3. Ah wave_dodger, good to see you. Your posts have always been so informative, so thanks for that!

    I also asked them about laser-eye surgery. On this forum, I read that both your corrected and uncorrected pre-laser-eye-surgery vision apparently gets taken into account when you do laser-eye surgery. But since I wasn't sure, I asked. They didn't have a clear answer really, but they seemed to suggest that if "too much had been taken off", then you could still be barred from entry. I'm not sure what that means, other than that they make a comparison between your pre & post-laser eye surgery vision and then make some sort of judgement based on that. Which is a little worrying really, if you ended up with 6/6 vision, but then got turned down anyway.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    The thing to remember about branch specific pipeline training is it is an evolving creature. A CIS rating who joined the Navy three years ago and still serving would not be familiar with his source branch training today. Neither would an ET(ME), for that matter who underwent 26 weeks training in 2012 but 40 weeks if he/she joined today.

    The information available to AFCO's is only as current as that offered by the source branch itself. With several dozen specialisations ranging from surgeons to engineers, padre's to mine clearance divers, the scope for change is, to put it mildly, vast. On average, besides the fact there are, on average, between 30-50 changes to recruiting procedures per year, a person serving five years, will most likely be unaware of a couple of hundred changes since they underwent selection.

    Anyway, careers advisers undergo update courses every other year for one to one briefs with branch SMEs, to try to keep abreast, as best possible. It's worth bearing in mind also that not everyone in an AFCO is a careers adviser, very often there are temporary loan service personnel who are spending a few weeks working from home, enjoying a bit of 'harmony time'.

    ET(WE) (CIS) is now an Engineering branch, as indicated by @wave_dodger. The minimum eyesight standard is Visual Acuity standard 2, colour perception grade 3. The latest advisory letter regarding laser surgery is quoted below.

    Good luck!

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  5. As a current LET(CIS)(SM) (I think) I can say, with some confidence, that the RN hasnt got the slightest clue what we are either, so you'll fit right in! We're WE when it suits (cheers Faraday) but not enough to be on the supp 3 pay-band until after cross training. And god help anyone trying to get on a new course....
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  6. wave_dodger

    wave_dodger War Hero Book Reviewer

    Some parts haven't I will grant you that, in other quarters we're fighting the cause!
  7. Thank you everyone :).

    The CIS route is looking super appealing to me. Since it's in Engineering, will there be a lot of maths either initially or later on?
  8. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    The 'sums bit' only gets significantly more "in depth" on Leading Rate's qualifying course , so far as I'm aware. The recruit test pass/fail mark is set at a level which gauges the intellectual capacity of the individual to successfully complete initial branch training. Pass the recruit test, you should pass branch training. Or so the theory goes.
  9. DavidK1983

    Is the ET (CIS) SM role a highly varied one? Do you work on every electronics based piece of kit which needs maintenance and how much do you actually operate equipment and in what way?
    Do you work with boat weaponry as part of the electronics maintenance?

    If you can provide me with a rough outline of the duties and routine that would be great - I'm thinking of going for this role myself and any and all info would be interesting .

    Best of luck to you AB111 by the way ;)
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  10. You are 56.......even more deluded than me.
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    • Braindead Braindead x 1
  11. AB111, Why the braindead rating?
    Your profile says you're 56.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. You will operating all the external communications equipment and assisting in the maintenance of that equipment, along with the administration and maintenance of the onboard IT systems. The weapons systems are looked after by ET(WESM) ratings.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  13. It is either Norman or a relative.
  14. ...or an eight year old labrador :D
    • Funny Funny x 1

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