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Divisional System

I would be very interested to hear peoples comments on the state of the divisional system in RNR units ? also have many of your read the "RN Ethos" leaflet available to all at units
yours aye
 

Rea1

Midshipman
After nearly 18 years, I have been pinged and I am on DO's course next week! I will ask about RNR units!
 
The divisional system in the RNR has suffered some fairly serious neglect over the last few years. I am glad to say it is on the up. DOs are being made to have reports in on time and of a suitable standard. I have heard tale of people not having had a RORRS for over eight years.

It's about time it was taken more seriously.

Maybe they will reintroduce a DOs course again.
 

McHammock

Lantern Swinger
Agree that there has been almost criminal neglect in the past but is now (slowly !) getting better.
Binning the RNR DO's course was an absolutely stupid idea.
Everyone in the Divisional system - LHs, S/Rs, DOs, XO & CO need to ensure we're all doing our job properly.
Anyone remember "the most important single factor" ?
 

GCYZ

Lantern Swinger
I Know, lets rename STO's, DO's. They could be responsible for Discipline, welfare, training etc. We could write a book and call it "The Divisional Officers Handbook" and give it the BR number 1992. (tongue firmly in cheek)

To me the rot set in when we introduced BTO's and tried to introduce a system out of step with the RN. In Some units, ratings had BTO's and DO’s, so the whole thing became confused and we have never recovered. Perhaps it stems from having clear line of responsibility from TPO/UTO(S) on the training side and 1st Lt on the divisional side. What ever the reasoning was or is, it ain’t working!
 
The divisional system is fine, its the DO's that are the problem. Finding a good officer that is interested in his people is rarity. It is the DSR's that hold it together.
 

McHammock

Lantern Swinger
fullasternboth said:
The divisional system is fine, its the DO's that are the problem. Finding a good officer that is interested in his people is rarity. It is the DSR's that hold it together.
Brilliant generalisation there.
Come on, we all know good & bad Officers and good & bad SR's.
 
Surely this just links into the CLM discussion. I we had a few more senior rates and Junior officers(upto Lt Cdr) who understood a little bit more about leadership then they would appreciate that looking after the people in there charge is vital.
 

pots359v

Lantern Swinger
Having worked with the wavy navy and been a PSI during my career, let me say a couple of things, firstly the RNR are part time, one night a week to be taught and to keep up with divisional documentation is laughable.
that is why the PSI is key, if you have a good one he will point the BTO in the right direction, same as onboard a real establishment/ship. The PSI knows his people the same as a DSR does in the real Navy, we cant expect a shopkeeper to learn OOW/SEAMANSHIP etc and expect them to keep up divisional records, where do they get the time from?

Also, the standard of SR in the fleet as a whole are dropping due to lack of manpower and rating up people who are clearly not worthy of the rank, we need to keep it honest and call a spade a spade and not a finely tuned piece of machinery to excavate a whole!!!!
 

le_jaq

Midshipman
Mchammock thought that fullastern was generalising when he talked aobu the quality of officers and SRs.

A generalisation it might be, but the truth is that the RNR has inherited a system from the RN which is predicated on easy access to a DO (or DSR), but has done little to support that.

I know of instances in the RNR where people could not even be told who their DO was - somewhat limiting for training and career advancement. The key here is that what ever the system the RNR decides to use (and why not use a different system as pots suggests) it must be fully supported you cannot have half measures.
 

PartTimer

War Hero
GCYZ said:
I Know, lets rename STO's, DO's. They could be responsible for Discipline, welfare, training etc. We could write a book and call it "The Divisional Officers Handbook" and give it the BR number 1992. (tongue firmly in cheek)

To me the rot set in when we introduced BTO's and tried to introduce a system out of step with the RN. In Some units, ratings had BTO's and DO’s, so the whole thing became confused and we have never recovered. Perhaps it stems from having clear line of responsibility from TPO/UTO(S) on the training side and 1st Lt on the divisional side. What ever the reasoning was or is, it ain’t working!

STO's are not meant to be DO's - they are meant to assist the STO and the XO (in their capcity as Training Officer) in providing specialist training and planning of ORT to enable the ships company to achiveve TPS/OPS and Bounty. They also must ensure personnel records are in order so that gains to the TS (which they must ensure personnel reach with specified time limits) can be determined and together with the DOs ensure that PTPs match specialisation tarining requirements as laid out in BR60A.

DO's, as you say, are responsible to the 1st Lt, and much greater emphasis is now being placed on divisional work and welfare of personnel. Part of the problem in the past has been the dropping of the requirement for annual reporting outside of promotion reports etc. Consequently, the only reports on file were from ORT, unless the individual was in zone. Annual reporting has now retuned so the situation should improve, especially as their is a big push to improve the quality of report writing and actively include DSRs.

STO's may act as senior DO's, but they're more like a HOD.
 

GCYZ

Lantern Swinger
PartTimer said:
GCYZ said:
I Know, lets rename STO's, DO's. They could be responsible for Discipline, welfare, training etc. We could write a book and call it "The Divisional Officers Handbook" and give it the BR number 1992. (tongue firmly in cheek)

To me the rot set in when we introduced BTO's and tried to introduce a system out of step with the RN. In Some units, ratings had BTO's and DO’s, so the whole thing became confused and we have never recovered. Perhaps it stems from having clear line of responsibility from TPO/UTO(S) on the training side and 1st Lt on the divisional side. What ever the reasoning was or is, it ain’t working!

STO's are not meant to be DO's - they are meant to assist the STO and the XO (in their capcity as Training Officer) in providing specialist training and planning of ORT to enable the ships company to achiveve TPS/OPS and Bounty. They also must ensure personnel records are in order so that gains to the TS (which they must ensure personnel reach with specified time limits) can be determined and together with the DOs ensure that PTPs match specialisation tarining requirements as laid out in BR60A.

DO's, as you say, are responsible to the 1st Lt, and much greater emphasis is now being placed on divisional work and welfare of personnel. Part of the problem in the past has been the dropping of the requirement for annual reporting outside of promotion reports etc. Consequently, the only reports on file were from ORT, unless the individual was in zone. Annual reporting has now retuned so the situation should improve, especially as their is a big push to improve the quality of report writing and actively include DSRs.

STO's may act as senior DO's, but they're more like a HOD.
That is exactly my point. Why do we need separate roles? In the RN the DO has the training role, why should the RNR split the job. This only causes confusion among the JR’s. They see an officer in charge of their division and that’s all that matters, they don’t care if he is DO or STO. When I was a BTO JR’s would come to me with request forms to be signed etc. Did I turn them away and “wait until next week to see your DOâ€, of course not. The key is having a DO who turns up every week! The role we currently call STO is a major function of a traditional DO. We need one person the JR’s can focus on. BR1992 works for the RN why shouldn’t it work for the RNR?
 

PartTimer

War Hero
GCYZ said:
PartTimer said:
GCYZ said:
I Know, lets rename STO's, DO's. They could be responsible for Discipline, welfare, training etc. We could write a book and call it "The Divisional Officers Handbook" and give it the BR number 1992. (tongue firmly in cheek)

To me the rot set in when we introduced BTO's and tried to introduce a system out of step with the RN. In Some units, ratings had BTO's and DO’s, so the whole thing became confused and we have never recovered. Perhaps it stems from having clear line of responsibility from TPO/UTO(S) on the training side and 1st Lt on the divisional side. What ever the reasoning was or is, it ain’t working!

STO's are not meant to be DO's - they are meant to assist the STO and the XO (in their capcity as Training Officer) in providing specialist training and planning of ORT to enable the ships company to achiveve TPS/OPS and Bounty. They also must ensure personnel records are in order so that gains to the TS (which they must ensure personnel reach with specified time limits) can be determined and together with the DOs ensure that PTPs match specialisation tarining requirements as laid out in BR60A.

DO's, as you say, are responsible to the 1st Lt, and much greater emphasis is now being placed on divisional work and welfare of personnel. Part of the problem in the past has been the dropping of the requirement for annual reporting outside of promotion reports etc. Consequently, the only reports on file were from ORT, unless the individual was in zone. Annual reporting has now retuned so the situation should improve, especially as their is a big push to improve the quality of report writing and actively include DSRs.

STO's may act as senior DO's, but they're more like a HOD.
That is exactly my point. Why do we need separate roles? In the RN the DO has the training role, why should the RNR split the job. This only causes confusion among the JR’s. They see an officer in charge of their division and that’s all that matters, they don’t care if he is DO or STO. When I was a BTO JR’s would come to me with request forms to be signed etc. Did I turn them away and “wait until next week to see your DOâ€, of course not. The key is having a DO who turns up every week! The role we currently call STO is a major function of a traditional DO. We need one person the JR’s can focus on. BR1992 works for the RN why shouldn’t it work for the RNR?

OK, DO's in regular training establishments (for this is what we must compare an RU too, depite the name change from RTC), do perform the role of STO (scheduling training etc), but this is there full time job. DO stuff is done around the day job. In the Reserves we just don't have the time to do this, hence what is a split in responsibility - a sensible split imo.

I agree the DO's need to turn up regularly, but this is also where the DSR's role comes in. I don't agree we need on person as a focus - that means one person does all the jobs and juniors don't get any experience! My RU is actually looking at Divisions of only 4 or 5, both to ensure quality pf reporting and to give SR's divisional experience.
 

GCYZ

Lantern Swinger
PartTimer said:
OK, DO's in regular training establishments (for this is what we must compare an RU too, depite the name change from RTC), do perform the role of STO (scheduling training etc), but this is there full time job. DO stuff is done around the day job. In the Reserves we just don't have the time to do this, hence what is a split in responsibility - a sensible split imo.

I agree the DO's need to turn up regularly, but this is also where the DSR's role comes in. I don't agree we need on person as a focus - that means one person does all the jobs and juniors don't get any experience! My RU is actually looking at Divisions of only 4 or 5, both to ensure quality pf reporting and to give SR's divisional experience.

In my unit (stand by for potential beadwindow) there is a PSI assigned to each Specialisation. RNR 16's are passed through the PSI for approval (Including Officers, but we'll not go there). The PSI amends the PTP to show training has taken place etc, contacts the individual if there are any problems etc. This frees up the STO to be a DO. Since we introduced this system it has worked very well. Don't know if this is unique to us or common to other RU's. Agree in principal with small divisions (after all that is how the term came about) but unfortunately the regular attendee with shoulder the burden. The role of giving Juniors experience is very much determined by how we task ADO's, and that is another point for dicussion.
 

PartTimer

War Hero
GCYZ said:
PartTimer said:
OK, DO's in regular training establishments (for this is what we must compare an RU too, depite the name change from RTC), do perform the role of STO (scheduling training etc), but this is there full time job. DO stuff is done around the day job. In the Reserves we just don't have the time to do this, hence what is a split in responsibility - a sensible split imo.

I agree the DO's need to turn up regularly, but this is also where the DSR's role comes in. I don't agree we need on person as a focus - that means one person does all the jobs and juniors don't get any experience! My RU is actually looking at Divisions of only 4 or 5, both to ensure quality pf reporting and to give SR's divisional experience.

In my unit (stand by for potential beadwindow) there is a PSI assigned to each Specialisation. RNR 16's are passed through the PSI for approval (Including Officers, but we'll not go there). The PSI amends the PTP to show training has taken place etc, contacts the individual if there are any problems etc. This frees up the STO to be a DO. Since we introduced this system it has worked very well. Don't know if this is unique to us or common to other RU's. Agree in principal with small divisions (after all that is how the term came about) but unfortunately the regular attendee with shoulder the burden. The role of giving Juniors experience is very much determined by how we task ADO's, and that is another point for dicussion.

Same in our RU (same one?!?!), but the STO is responsible for an awful lot more. A good PSI will make the STO's life a lot easier for the day to day stuff like booking courses and handling updates of PTP's, but it is the STO that has to deal with formulating the training programme and generating the PTP's.

As an aside, the PSI will only clear the RNR16 throught the SM for budgetary purposes (as far as I'm aware).
 

Uncle_Albert

War Hero
I spent a year as a DO before being relieved of it due to taking on another role within unit, and as such I'd like to throw in my few pence.

I think I was a good DO, and I did it by being in almost every week (I miss maybe two or three drill nights a year). Every report was in on time, every advancment opportunity was pursued, every rating was spoken to regularly, employers were telephoned and placated/filled in (in the non-violent sense), birthdays acknowledged (surpringsly effective), paperwork filed, the whole shebang; the secret is graft.

I didn't do JODMAC as it was removed just as I got to it (and as such my time at BRNC didn't contain any DO training as they anticipated me doing it in JODMAC - another example of the sheer genius of synchronicity frequently found in the RNR), but I did take a copy of BR1992 home and read it. It took a couple of hours and some iniative to really get to grips with it. Essentially, any DO can be a good DO in the RNR by just putting in the time and asking the Chief Writer/PSI/experienced DOs.

I accept that some people simply cannot put the time in, and I know that some people choose not to put the time in, leaving the unit with the added problem that the best people for the top jobs in unit are also the best people to be the DOs. My replacement is rarely in, but the DO in charge of the other half of that branch has simply taken on all their colleague's duties as well. He doesn't like it, but he's doing it, because that's what officers are damned well supposed to do, effectively giving him a division of over 15 people.

In summary, the problem isn't the lack of JODMAC, the unavailablity of training or lack of access to BR1992; it's graft (and initiative) and the lack of it from people who chose to become officers and chose to take on these extra duties.

On a side note, every unit gets the same number of PSIs, meaning the amount of help one can reasonably expect from a PSI is much smaller at the big units that at the little units; roll on regionalisation!
 

PartTimer

War Hero
Uncle_Albert said:
I spent a year as a DO before being relieved of it due to taking on another role within unit, and as such I'd like to throw in my few pence.

I think I was a good DO, and I did it by being in almost every week (I miss maybe two or three drill nights a year). Every report was in on time, every advancment opportunity was pursued, every rating was spoken to regularly, employers were telephoned and placated/filled in (in the non-violent sense), birthdays acknowledged (surpringsly effective), paperwork filed, the whole shebang; the secret is graft.

I didn't do JODMAC as it was removed just as I got to it (and as such my time at BRNC didn't contain any DO training as they anticipated me doing it in JODMAC - another example of the sheer genius of synchronicity frequently found in the RNR), but I did take a copy of BR1992 home and read it. It took a couple of hours and some iniative to really get to grips with it. Essentially, any DO can be a good DO in the RNR by just putting in the time and asking the Chief Writer/PSI/experienced DOs.

I accept that some people simply cannot put the time in, and I know that some people choose not to put the time in, leaving the unit with the added problem that the best people for the top jobs in unit are also the best people to be the DOs. My replacement is rarely in, but the DO in charge of the other half of that branch has simply taken on all their colleague's duties as well. He doesn't like it, but he's doing it, because that's what officers are damned well supposed to do, effectively giving him a division of over 15 people.

In summary, the problem isn't the lack of JODMAC, the unavailablity of training or lack of access to BR1992; it's graft (and initiative) and the lack of it from people who chose to become officers and chose to take on these extra duties.

On a side note, every unit gets the same number of PSIs, meaning the amount of help one can reasonably expect from a PSI is much smaller at the big units that at the little units; roll on regionalisation!

Good post, well put. It's not just DO duties either - it applies across much of what the RNR does. To be fair to some people though - they leave the drill night with plenty of (unpaid) work to do, and well meaning to do it for the following weeks, and tiresome things like work and family get int he way!

It's easier for larger units I guess, where you have a greater pool of manpower, but it still ends up with the same people (the reliable, regular attendees) doing much of the work.
 

hammockhead

Lantern Swinger
It would be a lot easier for DOs if the information like QRRN, RNR Regs, BR1992, etc. were available online.

The Army has got a lot of their regulations online at Army Electronic Library, but unfortunately they seem to have used a system that only works with Microsoft Internet Explorer.
 

GCYZ

Lantern Swinger
Uncle_Albert said:
.....I didn't do JODMAC as it was removed just as I got to it (and as such my time at BRNC didn't contain any DO training as they anticipated me doing it in JODMAC - another example of the sheer genius of synchronicity.......

..........In summary, the problem isn't the lack of JODMAC, the unavailablity of training or lack of access to BR1992; it's graft (and initiative) and the lack of it from people who chose to become officers and chose to take on these extra duties.
I agree and disagree, yes the key is having dedicated people who put the time in, but they also require training so we are all singing from the same hymn sheet. In the dim and distant past before the introduction of the BRNC course, ASLT's attended RNAC (RN Acquaint Course) at RNSLAM. This was essentially an RNRised DO's Course with additional leadership and General Info included, (for example you spent an evening as 2OOD on a ship, and Evening as 2OOD in NELSON, an evening with the provost, driving around the fleshpots of Pompy etc. The middle weekend was taken up with Sea survival and firefighting) I have not attended the BRNC course, but talking to Subbies who have it does not seem to have any of this. The good ones will try hard to find out for themselves, the rest will not bother.
 

Brains

Lantern Swinger
Some good points in here, but the regulars need to remember that RNRUs are not operational units, merely geographical centres for a national element of the Service. The role is somewhere between that of a training establishment and that of an operation establishment. That's why it is hard for DOs to also look after training, as much training is conducted nationally, and there is not always functional/task management by DOs due to the differing branch structure.

RNR DOs do not have an easy job - it is performed on top of their operational role (and as for all reservists on top of at least 1 civilian job as well). As DOs are people managers their work can not be scheduled into a neat 2-hour slot once a week as people issues arise at all times of the week. Find me a DO who does not receive many e-mails and phone calls on their division outside RNR time and I would question whether they are doing a good job.

I wish everyone would stop talking about paperwork too. Yes, the paperwork needs to be done, and needs to be done well, but a good DO does not let admin become the bulk of their job. It is all very managable if you know how, and with support from the usually excellent PSIs. This is a Unit admin issue and if it's not working should be fed up the chain of command.

DOs exist (amongst other things) to manage careers, provide pastoral care and guidance and provide 2 way communication between ratings and the command. They have a huge duty of professional management.

Maybe the issue is that with 2 weeks continuous training swallowing a year of reservists' operational work, the focus is very much on specialist training and DOs are not getting the management training they need. That is something that can be addressed nationally and within RNRUs by developing the training and support for DOs within the Unit.

This is a two-way street though. Just as there is no excuse for a DO not to know who is in their division, there is no excuse for a rating not to know who their DO is. If you want more from the system then ask for it - don't just expect it to happen by magic. Your DO will probably be very glad to hear from you!
 
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