With National Apprenticeship Week upon us, we wanted to shed some light on what it’s like to be a CityFibre apprentice....
- Take part in peacekeeping missions, support humanitarian efforts or fight in combat
- You'll need excellent teamworking and communications skills
- You could move up through the ranks or into a specialist technical role
As a soldier your day-to-day duties will depend on your job, the unit you join, and whether you work in a combat or non-combat role.
Roles you might work in include:
- Combat - as an infantry soldier or aviation crewman, engineering - as an aircraft technician or vehicle mechanic
- HR, finance and support - as an HR specialist or military police soldier
- Intelligence, communications and IT - as a military intelligence operator or communication systems engineer
- Medical - as a healthcare professional or veterinary technician
- Logistics and support - as a chef or logistics supply specialist
- Music and ceremonial - as a musician or ceremonial gunner
Your working hours will depend on which part of the armed forces you work in. During exercises and operations you may work long and irregular hours. You could be posted in the UK or overseas and may be away from your family for long periods of time. Depending on your role and regiment, you may be based in an office, engineering workshop or field hospital. The Army offers training and apprenticeships in a wide variety of skills and trades. Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding and outdoors in all weathers.
This role would be ideal for someone with excellent team-working and communications skills, the ability to think and act quickly under extreme pressure and to be able to understand and follow instructions. If you want to join a specialist unit such as the Corps of Royal Engineers, you'll need the practical and technical skills they require.
You could apply to join the army through an HM forces serviceperson intermediate apprenticeship, for which you'll need to apply directly to the army to find the best apprenticeship route for you (depending on your qualifications and which service role interests you).
You'll need to be aged between 16 and 33 - you'll need consent from a parent or guardian if you're under 18, meet the British Army nationality and residency requirements, get a GP's medical report, pass a full army medical and pass security and enhanced background checks.
You won't need any qualifications to join the Army unless you're applying for a technical role such as engineering or communications.
If your application is accepted, you'll be invited to talk to someone at your local army careers centre about what you want to do. You'll then attend an assessment, which includes medical and fitness tests.
The army recruitment process involves a number of stages.
You could join the Army Reserve to get experience of what life is like in the regular army. You'll also learn new skills at the same time. You'll need to be aged between 18 and 49, commit to at least 19 or 27 days a year, depending on your unit and attend a 2-week training camp each year.
If you're between 12 and 18 years old, you can join the Army Cadet Force.
When you join the army, you sign up for 4 years. You can leave at any time after this as long as you give 12 months' notice. If you want to stay you can extend your 4-year contract.
With training and experience you could move up through the ranks or into a specialist unit like the commandos. You could also gain a commission to become an officer which would give you a higher salary.
You could move into a wide range of careers after leaving the army. The Career Transition Partnership, Quest and Troops to Teachers have more information on careers outside the armed forces.