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Keeping the future in !!

westwinds31

Midshipman
Incredible meeting the other week, no names etc etc but the gist was that the RN was suffering a few years ago because 70% of AB's were leaving before the 5 year point. Not good obviously....so the RN decided to investigate exactly WHY this was happening...the results were interesting and basically the youngsters were complaining that they had no harmony time, were always at sea, shore time was limited to 6 months and they couldn't get their personal life sorted out and so decided to try civvy street instead.

Ah Ha...thought the RN....TopMast was introduced and the big Harmony push was introduced to keep these youngsters in the RN.

...3 years later (you know what's coming), another survey...it seems that 75% of AB's are now leaving before the 5 year point !!! How can that be I hear you ask ??? That is what the top brass also thought and so asked the young AB on the street why he was leaving and was not interested in a full career in the Andrew ? The answer was the same across the board....they were complaining that they didn't get any sea time, were always on courses or leave...they joined up to take part in operations around the world and instead were stuck in the UK doing nothing....DOH !!!
 
D

Deleted 493

Guest
westwinds31 said:
Incredible meeting the other week, no names etc etc but the gist was that the RN was suffering a few years ago because 70% of AB's were leaving before the 5 year point. Not good obviously....so the RN decided to investigate exactly WHY this was happening...the results were interesting and basically the youngsters were complaining that they had no harmony time, were always at sea, shore time was limited to 6 months and they couldn't get their personal life sorted out and so decided to try civvy street instead.

Ah Ha...thought the RN....TopMast was introduced and the big Harmony push was introduced to keep these youngsters in the RN.

...3 years later (you know what's coming), another survey...it seems that 75% of AB's are now leaving before the 5 year point !!! How can that be I hear you ask ??? That is what the top brass also thought and so asked the young AB on the street why he was leaving and was not interested in a full career in the Andrew ? The answer was the same across the board....they were complaining that they didn't get any sea time, were always on courses or leave...they joined up to take part in operations around the world and instead were stuck in the UK doing nothing....DOH !!!

Take a walk round Pompey dockyard, especially round Lancelot Building these days. Place is crammed with people with very little to do. All this bright, fresh idea of managing the shoreside squad is there to see, but now where there used to be a smidge of payback in buffer's party or doing block runner duties for 15 months, all it is now is pissing about trying to either justify being shoreside or desperately trying to get back to sea in an ever decreasing number of billets to claw back your LSA.

Marvellous. TOPMAST. A GREAT success!

Levers
 

SILVER_FOX

War Hero
Interesting point Levers - especially when you consider that at sea we're bleeding desperate for ABs, particularly ME and Logs.

SF
 

Kurtz

Lantern Swinger
Send them all to Faslane to join Bombers - they won't be dripping about lack of sea time then!!! Incidentally, been meaning to post this snippet on the S/M (no, not that S/M) forum - the 'top brass' (otherwise known as those who last went to sea when decks were wooden and submarines had diesel engines...) seem to think that increasing the duration of Bomber patrols from approx 12 weeks (standard) to 16 weeks would be good for retention, because the damned sailors would get more time ashore between patrols. Am I missing something?
 

ukdaytona

War Hero
disgruntled-at-rn said:
Send them all to Faslane to join Bombers - they won't be dripping about lack of sea time then!!! Incidentally, been meaning to post this snippet on the S/M (no, not that S/M) forum - the 'top brass' (otherwise known as those who last went to sea when decks were wooden and submarines had diesel engines...) seem to think that increasing the duration of Bomber patrols from approx 12 weeks (standard) to 16 weeks would be good for retention, because the damned sailors would get more time ashore between patrols. Am I missing something?

Yeah, if your at sea for 16 weeks, you cant quit......
 

Not_a_boffin

War Hero
You may also be seeing the start of an experiment to see whether the future bomber fleet could hack it with three boats vice four. Big area of debate at the minute....
 

snorko

Lantern Swinger
16 wek patrols, are you feckin' joking. Christ 11 or 12 weeks is enough, 16 weeks as standard would be hellish, and that would guarantee the odd longer one - say 18+ weeks when the oncoming bomber goes tits - which happens alot. F££k that for a game of soldiers.
 
16 weeks away on Patrol...............I reckon you would lose most AB's plus a host of other ranks !!
 
16 weeks away, fcuksake, thats 4 months. You fairies ever done a 6 month or longer tour where nasty people are shooting at you?.....get a fcuking grip.
 

nearlytiff

Midshipman
I joined in my late 20s and didn't hang around very long, sometimes regret not doing so.

Despite having good reports I was surprised how little effort was spent trying to keep me in by anyone but Officers who of course don't share the same experiences, at the end of the day I could have been persuaded.

What did it for me was the appalling low morale of nearly everyone I spoke to, the fact that most of the time as an AB you're nothing but a glorified cleaner. Don't get me wrong I don't mind cleaning but it was unending, often pointless, interfered with any plans for fun and just seemed designed to piss people off. That and the fact that getting even the simplest thing done was hard work because everything was a bureaucratic nightmare and designed to frustrate. I'd be interested in what other people's reasons for leaving were.
 
nearlytiff said:
I joined in my late 20s and didn't hang around very long, sometimes regret not doing so.

Despite having good reports I was surprised how little effort was spent trying to keep me in by anyone but Officers who of course don't share the same experiences, at the end of the day I could have been persuaded.

What did it for me was the appalling low morale of nearly everyone I spoke to, the fact that most of the time as an AB you're nothing but a glorified cleaner. Don't get me wrong I don't mind cleaning but it was unending, often pointless, interfered with any plans for fun and just seemed designed to piss people off. That and the fact that getting even the simplest thing done was hard work because everything was a bureaucratic nightmare and designed to frustrate. I'd be interested in what other people's reasons for leaving were.

I can relate to that in a way although a long time ago I must admit..

I joined Dolphin,done my basic bit about boats and then spent the next 5 months learning all about every type of sonar and torpedo we had on Bombers.Passed all that and was drafted to Neptune and reported on my first day to my new D.O whose first words to me were "Forget all that shit they have taught you for the last 5 months your going to do the Polaris Missile course "

So after spending 6 months doing that I joined the boat and was a happy bunny but when I found out, that as they had spent all this money putting me thru the course to be a MCC Queen and on the Personnel vetting side of things, I was duty bound to be on these big black things doing the same job for 7 years! Done a few patrols and thought I am like a trained monkey in every way on here.There was even a P.O doing the same job as me,and I was just a WEM(O) 1 !!

So when I reached the 21st birthday I put my 18 months notice in and off I went.
 

Kurtz

Lantern Swinger
16 weeks away, fcuksake, thats 4 months. You fairies ever done a 6 month or longer tour where nasty people are shooting at you?.....get a fcuking grip.

Thanks for that, wet-blobby. Although I appreciate that 6 months away from home with the Zulus chucking spears at you is probably extremely unpleasant, and until you've done it you can't really comment, I suspect you've never done a bomber patrol...
Don't knock it til you've tried it, shipmate.
 
wet_blobby said:
No, I've never done a bomber patrol, but I have done 6 month deployments.

WB

Not sure if you are aware mate, but certain TA units are now offering 3 month deployments to Iraq/Afghanistan instead of 6 months, as a way to keep people in Units.

Apparently taking people from their civilian life/careers/family etc was applying too much pressure (some lads have been mobilised 2 or 3 times and their civilian employers were throwing a wobbly).

Whilst I appreciate 4 months at sea is a long time, surely its much more comfortable on ship than 6 months living in a sh*thole under constant enemy fire!!

Cheerfulness through adversity springs to mind. Stop farking whinging and just get on with it!!

Spenny
 

Kurtz

Lantern Swinger
Rather than let this degenerate into 'my conditions are worse than yours', let's accept that the vast majority of servicemen appreciate what others do and admire them for it. This mutual respect, however, does not mean that we are not allowed to 'whinge' about our own conditions - particularly as this thread is about 'Keeping the future in !!'
My original point about the proposed extension of the bomber patrol to 16 weeks was intended to highlight the fact that those who make such decisions are so out-of-touch with the underlying sentiments of those of US who actually have recent, and forthcoming, experience of 80+ day bomber patrols. Never mind the matelots because, as we should all be aware, it's what we signed up to do - go on patrol, get shot at, live in a hole in the snow or a nuclear tube underwater - and after all the manking, we probably have to admit that we enjoy it a bit. It's the families; if the families are not happy, then jolly jack ain't happy. "See you in 113 days, darling. Remember, if you need anything, keep it to 40 words and famgram it to me. I'll let you know what I think in 4 months. Bye then..."
Oh, I feel so much better for that...
By the way, any of you out there who are intending to volunteer for Boats should beware of the rose-tinted brigade on the S/M site - pick out the RR members who are currently operational for an insight into what it's like NOW.
 

silverfox

War Hero
Moderator
Book Reviewer
Good post.

Although given all the opportunities and efforts made to get feedback from the workforce via CA survey, 2SLPLT etc etc I'm not sure how much more in touch the Great and the Good can be. There are obviously hard decisions to be made but perhaps there should be more effort into explaining these downwards.

As you say - no easy answer, but there are only so many demands you can place on yoyr workforce's sense of loyalty....
 

angry_mac

War Hero
Funnily enough in 2000 we had lecture by a team explaining this new squading system. As a bitter and twisted LWEM I promptly told the briefing Lt Cmdr that it wouldnt work, because they werent addressing the real issues that was prompting junior rates to leave early. His answer was 'It will work because I SAID IT WILL WORK'.
I thought what an arrogant twat then. Now add extremely short sighted buffoon now.
But hey ho he is probably Commander Rtd now sitting pretty, on a fat pension.
 
I think there is probably more to than just the sea time issue. We probably arent crediting the changes in society enough. Youngsters joining now do not look to do the same job for the next 22 years, alot are joining to gain experience before moving on to pastures new, I believe this is also common in civvy street, i.e. people no longer stay in one job for several years.

Of course another issue but probably relevent with the squadding system is there is no longer any 'esprit de corp' in the RN. In the 'good old' (bad) days you had a cap tally and belonged to a ship, where you lived and worked, the ship in turn was part of a squadron etc, you tended to stick to and stick up for your ship mates and to a lesser degree your squadron mates. With the modern way of things youngsters are cap tallied to a ship but do not have a locker or bed onboard and quite often are away from the unit doing some crappy job or another for long periods of time...hence no sense of belonging.

This, combined with the politicians constant drive to destroy our fine service by incesent budget cuts, over politicisation, political correctness and a sometimes ridiculously tense operational tempo will inevitably lead to people leaving.

I am afraid I do not have the answers.....I suspect that if I did I would be told that I am only a chief and to get back in my box, but if we do not address the issue of overall moral in the service (I believe moral is from 1* down, and probably higher, if some of the powers to be where honest and candid) then we will continue to lose people hand over fist.....probably the more promising ones first.
 
Stillabunting said:
I think there is probably more to than just the sea time issue. We probably arent crediting the changes in society enough. Youngsters joining now do not look to do the same job for the next 22 years, alot are joining to gain experience before moving on to pastures new, I believe this is also common in civvy street, i.e. people no longer stay in one job for several years.

Of course another issue but probably relevent with the squadding system is there is no longer any 'esprit de corp' in the RN. In the 'good old' (bad) days you had a cap tally and belonged to a ship, where you lived and worked, the ship in turn was part of a squadron etc, you tended to stick to and stick up for your ship mates and to a lesser degree your squadron mates. With the modern way of things youngsters are cap tallied to a ship but do not have a locker or bed onboard and quite often are away from the unit doing some crappy job or another for long periods of time...hence no sense of belonging.

This, combined with the politicians constant drive to destroy our fine service by incesent budget cuts, over politicisation, political correctness and a sometimes ridiculously tense operational tempo will inevitably lead to people leaving.

I am afraid I do not have the answers.....I suspect that if I did I would be told that I am only a chief and to get back in my box, but if we do not address the issue of overall moral in the service (I believe moral is from 1* down, and probably higher, if some of the powers to be where honest and candid) then we will continue to lose people hand over fist.....probably the more promising ones first.

Time the MoD realises its not just those with rings round their wrists that can have good ideas.
 

Karma

War Hero
Potential_Officer said:
Time the MoD realises its not just those with rings round their wrists that can have good ideas.

Yes

Contrary to popular belief the good ideas club isn't restricted to the weirdroom.
 
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