One hundred top brass get marching orders in new defence cuts to save £4million a yea

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by SJRM_RN, Aug 25, 2013.

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  1. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    I'm going to buck the trend here and support the senior officers, if you are going to cull the people at the very top of the armed forces, the ones who have been there, done that, changed this and improved that. Who have shown that they are the very best that the UK has to offer, have made the rank of General, then quite frankly the UK armed forces are ****ed.

    I know the usual crowd will comment "More admirals than ships" or "The armed forces are top heavy" but with joint multi national HQ's being the norm today the UK needs it's top draw officers.
    • Like Like x 6
  2. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    The RN currently has over 110 Commodores/Brigadiers & Admirals. It was announced last year that the proposed redundancies for Commodores/Brigadiers and upwards had been shelved in the Naval service. This was presumably decided by Commodores/Brigadiers and upwards.

    Unless this is a more recent reversal of that decision, it is more likely the portfolio of post titles will simply be reduced or re-branded.
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2013
  3. About time too. For too long we have held onto top brass who really have feck all to do:laughing3:
  4. Do you honestly believe that? Really? In your mind is there a club where all these senior officers just sit around in a wood panelled room serving each other gin from a gold embellished globe drinks trolley before nipping out for a game of croquet?
    • Like Like x 4
  5. So please enlighten me as to what the top brass ALL do to deserve their highly paid positions in todays TOY navy.
    We have more top brass than ships.
  6. I regret you lost all your credibility in one fell swoop there, Slim. :-(
  7. So do you really believe that we now have a credible Navy?
    In my opinion the RN has been decimated to such an extent thet we would be incapable of defending the UK and its protectorates.
    Do we really need so many top brass?
  8. Boom.

    A bit early to start drinking chap. You're normally a fairly reasoned bloke but my god you're wide of the mark here.
  9. Well as I stated enlighten me, someone must be able to justify the need for so much top brass for such a small fleet.
    Prove to me that I am wide of the mark.
    Justify the existance of ALL the senior occifers.
  10. Don't forget the media usually includes members of the Royal Family, senior medical officers and RM generals when they quote the number of 'Admirals' in the Royal Navy.

    I'm no longer aware of what ALL the RN's senior officers do but here are some of the jobs:

    Area Flag Officers
    Commanders of UK Battle Staffs
    Heading Sea Training
    Senior MOD Appointments (Defence Intelligence - the Boss is an Admiral/Policy/Procurement/Logistics/FCO Liaison/Maritime Liaison, etc)
    Leading tri-service IPTs (Integrated Project Teams) running equipment projects worth billions of pounds
    Senior Joint HQ appointments
    Senior RN HQ appointments
    Senior NATO HQ appointments where parity with foreign counterparts is required
    Senior EU HQ appointments where parity with foreign counterparts is required
    Naval Attaches/Defence Attaches on embassy staffs worldwide where parity with foreign counterparts is required

    More detail here:

    RN website: Senior Naval Staff

    From the above list, the number of active Admirals in the RN appears to be:

    0 Admirals of the Fleet
    1 Admiral
    7 Vice Admirals
    22 Rear Admirals

    The requirement for RN senior officers doesn't just depend on the number of ships, submarines, aircraft squadrons, RM Commandos and other units (e.g. Fleet Diving Squadron, Forward Support Units, etc.) in the Naval Service. For example, COMUKMARFOR in the above list is also the Operation Commander of the European Union Naval Force off Somalia (link).

    Apart from being nonsense numerically, the accusation that the RN has more admirals than ships fails to take into account RN senior officers' (and thereby the UK's) influential involvement further afield.
    • Like Like x 3
  11. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    According the the latest RN pocket brief there are 110 serving Commodores & Admirals, it doesn't list RM Brigadiers upward.
  12. Purple_twiglet

    Purple_twiglet War Hero Moderator

    The point I heard made the other day was that the RN is struggling to get along with only 1 4* and 2 3* officers in the direct Naval chain now (and roughly 9 2*s). The reason is that so many responsibilities need senior sign off, so many visits and staff talks need participation and so much work gets done, that with only three senior officers in the RN command structure, they are massively overworked.
    I've recently been lucky enough to spend time working around the service chiefs area and seen first hand how hard they work. The typical day for a service chief is around 15-18 hours long, usually 6-7 days per week. They are required to make strategic decisions, provide advice to the PM and it is on their guidance that this nation can send troops to war. I do not begrudge them a penny of the miserly pittance of what they earn, which relative to the counterparts in industry is hundreds of thousands a year less.

    Senior officers exist because in an organisation like Defence, where you've got a £37 billion budget, hundreds of thousands of employees, operations across every continent on the planet and involvement in everything from defence estates to the nuclear deterrent, you have a fairly complex set of business units. You need seniors to take charge of them, to provide leadership and to be the decision maker, because I guarantee you that a rank concious organisation does not do 'primus inter pares' ( one reason why I suspect the RN is pleased CINCFLEET isn't a 4* anymore, because when those two posts didnt agree, it got messy).
    Every organisation has a hierachy - frankly, for the RN to have a total of 130 odd staff out of nearly 40,000 (30,000 regular, roughly 5000 untrained strength 3000 reserve, 2000 RFA) who are 1* or above, then thats bloody lean in my book.
  13. Then perhaps it is about time that the rules were changed and more work of this type carried out by officers of a lower rank than flag rank.
    There are 110 officers of Commodore and above, you have justifiesd work for just 12 of them
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2013
    • Like Like x 1
  14. I've recently been lucky enough to spend time working around the service chiefs area and seen first hand how hard they work. The typical day for a service chief is around 15-18 hours long, usually 6-7 days per week. Quote PT...turn it in !!! As MRD once famously said !!!..." We'll he would say that Wouldn't he" :grin:
  15. Purple_twiglet

    Purple_twiglet War Hero Moderator

    Okay, lets reduce ranks by one grade per job. You then either cause stagnation as people wait much longer for promotion - e.g. you still need to have requisite experience to do the job (unless you think anyone with 10 years served can do a 1* job?). The issue though is what happens to all the more junior jobs - how do you distinguish between an SO2 / SO3 job if they are all at the same level? How do you persuade people to stay if you can't offer them promotion for nearly 20 years (assuming 10 years as Lt, 8 years at Lt Cdr under current system for most people to reach SO1).

    The problem in the military is that too many people seem to be bitter about how there are a tiny number of people at the top who have nice uniforms and larger salaries. 100 odd Cdres to run a few naval sites, manage defence relations, run major procurement projects, do all the myriad of other jobs that defence needs doing- thats not actually bad. If you look at what they are paid, its costing a fraction of what a senior industry equivalent would get.

    I find it pathetic that some people are so bitter, twisted and jealous because 0.1% of the Naval service is a Cdre or above.
    • Like Like x 2
  16. In the grand scheme of things a saving of £4 million is a mere spit in the ocean compared to what we shell out in foreign aid to countries that are no longer our responsibility or concern. In fact, we unbelievably fund a past and still potential enemy such as Argentina to the tune of £7 million annually and we underwrite millions more to be given to them by the EU.

    To achieve this paltrey defence saving we are prepared to ditch senior brass whose careers have cost a fortune to develop and now have a wealth of experience from their service that the senior service can only benefit from. Time for a serious rethink when it comes to where the savings can be made without imposing further restrictions on the naval budget.

    Why is British taxpayers' money supporting Argentina's finances? | Burning Our Money | The TaxPayers' Alliance
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2013
    • Like Like x 1
  17. Yes, in at least a third of the armed forces!
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    Possibly the role of the Navy has evolved and that is what makes it more difficult to explain. Nowadays about ten percent of seagoing jobs are undertaken by commissioned officers but the reduced manning afloat causes a perceived imbalance to those who knew a different Navy, given that a third of Naval personnel (except RM 1 in 8) hold a commission. To support 40 Admirals and 70 Commodores, there are 240 Captains and 880 Commanders. I'd imagine private businesses operate comparably.
  19. We should save money by cutting foreign aid not the forces

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