Tuesday, 25th September 2018


How to get into the Armed Forces

The armed forces are open to applicants from all areas of life, whether you want to join straight from school, sixth form, after university or are changing career.

Each of the different careers in the armed forces that you can go into that have different training procedures and ranks, but no matter what branch of the armed forces you go into, the entry requirements for the lowest level ranks are likely to be the same.

Of course, for positions life RAF pilots or army engineers, higher levels of qualification and training may be required.

Necessary actions and skills Required

armed forces qualificationsIt’s important to be sure about which branch of the armed forces you want to join.

Jobs within the army are very different from those within the Royal Air Force or in the Navy.

Training in the armed forces is not all about taking weapons apart, crawling through mud and learning to follow orders; there are many different positions within the forces that require specific technical skill and training, such as engineers and pilots.

All positions within the armed forces require good literacy and numeracy skills with some application processes including aptitude tests.

The recruitment process

The recruitment process for the armed services is very structured and require applicants to pass the relevant tests and checks in the following areas:

  • Age
  • Nationality and Residency
  • Fitness
  • Physical health and medical conditions
  • Criminal Convictions

For each individual role, there will be different requirements for each jobs, so please see specific job descriptions for more information.

Armed services employers will want recruits who show evidence of the following attributes:

  • Good communication skills
  • Ability to work as part of a team
  • Initiative
  • Physical fitness and strength
  • Ability to take orders and work well under pressure

In order to apply for the armed forces, you need to be between 16 and 32 years old on entry and have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of between 18 and 28.

Qualifications in the Armed Forces

Most entry positions within the armed forces do not require higher education, but will accept people with GCSE’s, BTECs or A-levels. Those without English and Maths qualifications will be required to take a literacy and numeracy test.

The armed forces all operate pre-graduate and graduate training schemes.

This includes sponsorships for university and sixth form students who commit to joining the RAF or the Army after completing their studies.

This can be a great way of funding your education if you are set on a career in the armed forces.

There are many opportunities for graduates within the armed forces, including engineers, pilots, technicians, officers, doctors and physiotherapists.

Depending on which position you are interested in, different degree subjects will be of good use.

Apprenticeships are also available in the armed forces, particularly in engineering or administrative roles.

Once you have passed the recruitment process and are accepted into one of the armed forces, you will then have to choose your regiment and apply for that.

Why don't you take a look at the other career opportunities for young people too?