Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

Anyone In The Defence Force?

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by jazzthechef, Jan 31, 2009.

  1. Hi yall,
    as it turns out i am requiring a career change and am currently considering the australian defence force more specifically the RAAF.
    Just wondering if anyone here is in the force and what there opinion of life is like?
    How your familys take it?
    How long you have served? Where?
    Any insight would be greatly appreciated.


  2. Mate, some things ya have to find out by yourself.
  3. Thats why im asking about OTHER PEOPLES OPINIONS on life.
  4. Everyone you ask will have a different opinion. The only one that counts is your own.
  5. Been in 19 years. Served in Canberra, Perth, Sydney, Adelaide, Sale and with work have deployed to or visited:
    Marshall Islands(various places)
    Middle East
    New Zealand
    Norfolk Island
    Micronesia(various places)
    Western and American Samoa
    San Diego

    It has been great. I've had a flight in a Hornet, flew PC9s for over a year and spent 10 years flying on AP-3C Orions. I've had a good run. There have been tough times and you do have to wear a lot of shit you'd rather not do, especially when you are junior, but overall I'd say it is 90% good 10% bad. Job security is almost unquestioned and they pay me a shitload as aircrew.

    Family are pro-military so they have always been very supportive. I don't have a family of my own which if you have a family can be an area where being in Defence really hurts. Moving every couple of years is a pain, especially when uprooting kids. Wives can have trouble finding jobs depending on their occupation. I have known guys who have been posted when their kids were in year 10 and 12 and they decided not to move them so they ended up not moving the family for a year, moving alone and living on base for a year while being lucky to see their family every couple of months. So it can be really tough on the home life. They try to do everything they can to help in this respect but at the end of the day, if they have to have a job filled, it gets filled. That's life in the ADF. You have to get the job done.

    Did you have a specific mustering/category you were thinking of?
  6. Looking at avionic technician. Curently dont have a family as such but girfriieand of 5 years is willing to follo me and she works in hospitality so she can pretty muchget a job anywhere. Thanks for your help.
  7. They'll love you at recruiting then. Can't get enough AVTECHs and can't keep enough. Depending on the aircraft type you go to, you could get some overseas deployments and regular deployments within Australia. We've got a lot of new kit coming on line in the next 10 years, a lot of it very modern technology driven stuff. Super-Hornet, JSF, Wedgetail, Orion replacement. So AVTECHs are going to be working on some pretty specy gear.
  8. Awesome. One of my fears was would they actually need anymore avionic techs or would I end up doing something that didnt quite interest me as much. Out of curiosity do you know why they lose many?
  9. definately not in the same league here, but spent four years as an infantry reservist about 20 years ago, with just under a year full time.

    Even that experience remains with me to this day in a lot of positive ways, so i say go for it :wink:
  10. I go for my second interview 17th Feb for the ADF, can't wait :D. The recruitment process is quite long so far though, between interviews it's been like just over a month. However most of that can probably be blamed on holiday season.
  11. In my experience, the job is great, the benefits and everything else are brilliant.

    Some of the people can be somewhat lacking, though. You will come accross people that will have you wondering just how they lived to be adults, let alone be a part of the military.

    As for retaining AV-Techs, the civilian life pays too much if your any good. Same with pilots. Although it isn't as rife as it was in the 80's early 90's it still happens.

    I hope you understand about your Return of Service Obligations, minimum service, and the military super annuation scheme. But having a clear understanding of those three will help you decide whether its what you want. Also ensure you get an understanding of Spousal Benefits. IIRC you will need to be at least declared a Defacto relationship, to gain access to them, probably best to arrange this before you enlist to make getting Accomadation simpler.

    Most military bases now have the hospitality out sourced to different Companies, your partner should be able to get a job with them(It is quite common). The main Players are Sodexo, Eurest, and Serco-GM(IIRC - it has been a while). They pay reasonably well, but depending on where you are, there maybe better pay options in the local area. If your going to start a family, the military also have some bloody good kindegarden/creche support.

    Now for the Levity, make sure if you take this up, there is no OMO in the house! I'll let someone else explain.

    edit::// The Army, and Navy both also have use For AV-Techs.
    When I initially thought of Corps Transferring to Aviation, in this role, the opportunities were pretty good. Army, and Navy both Primarily would be based around Non-Fixed wing, though. Getting to Work on Chinooks, involves USA-Time(When I loooked at doing this 10 years ago).

    I have heard of people being Corps Enlisted, and doing Basic Training, then Not having a position there for them, when Basic had finished. Be sure to have it all in writing. I have also heard of a young Gnetleman that enlisted up, and was assigned a Training platoon with only Infantry slots. He was a Helicopter Pilot, with over 8000 hours iirc, it took some serious effort from the Instructors to get this oversight fixed. Mistakes happen at enlistment centers, be sure you try and limit your risk to them.

    I was in the Army, I discharged in 2000.
  12. ... take some nasty pills or something? :roll:

    At least you got some great "experienced" answers from people who care, Jazz :grin:

    Avionics! Sounds like fun! :grin:
  13. I wasn't being nasty.
    He might as well have asked.."I'm thinking of getting married, what's marriage like?" Some things you will only find out by trying it yourself.
  14. Yes, because jumping into something with return of service obligations, or the potential to lose your house, is something everyone should do without asking the advice of people who have been there and done that. You sir, are a numpty.
  15. +1

    I swear some people just post to get thier post count up. A 6 - 8 year contract is not something to be considered Lightly. You can get out early, but you have to pay out the ROSO first, and it's not exactly cheap.
  16. To be blunt, because due to the shortage of them they get worked too hard. I have know bloody great AVTECHs who were top operators and were passionate about being in the RAAF who were run into the ground and had to leave. The outside money is also a big drawcard. They still loved the job but they just couldn't sustain the pace. It is a rare person who can sustain that sort of pace and you can't for a second hold it against the guys who leave. This can depend on what aircraft type you work on, as will many things.

    As mentioned, make sure you get answers to all the questions you can think of. And while it is hard not to trust the recruiters as they are your primary source of information, it pays to be cautious and meticulous in finding out what you are in for. Just don't act like you don't trust them as that will piss them off. Recruiting can be a really hard job and the people that do it aren't bastards, it is just that they are under the pump to get enough people. It has been 20 years since I have been in a recruiting office so things might have changed, but one of the tricks they used when I went through was saying that once you're in you can change to whatever job you want to do, so enlist in some other job instead. The mechanism is there to do this but not everyone is able to. And even if you do it can take a long time. I know one guy who wanted to be a pilot in the RAAF. They wouldn't accept him as a pilot but offered him a supply job on the premise it was easier to get on Pilot's course once you were in. He accepted the supply job and after 8 years of trying to change over, he asked the Navy if they wanted him as a pilot. They snapped him up and he is now flying helicopters off the back of ships.

    And don't assume everything will go to plan. I joined to be a pilot. Got 95% through pilot's course and then got scrubbed. My personnel manager's advice at that point was to do my Return of Service and bugger off!!! I said bollocks to that and applied for Nav. Got rejected as entirely unsuitable, then got put on course through a lucky back door avenue, duxed the course and then spent 10 years on Orions having the time of my life. So there are a lot of ups and downs. You have to go head down, bum up and plow through. Especially in the first few bits under training.
  17. If you have to ask for the opinions of others then you're probably not ready to make a decision.
    I feel this chap is just after positive reinforcement to help him make up his mind.
  18. fark me!

    can there be atleast one topic of discussion without the AGRo!

    family friend is in the RAAF. she's a dentist. hawt gal. was up in newcastle and recently got moved to the northern territory. from all accounts, she enjoys it.

    friend of mine is in the US navy. he CAN'T wait to get the hell out.
  19. You think maybe he was asking for other peoples opinions so as to help him make his decision?? And whats wrong with trying to get some positive reinforcement?

    If i was gonna sign 8 years of my life away, id want to be informed too.

  20. A mate of mine is an AVTEC in the Army, works on blackhawks and more recently doing some time on the Tiger. Absolutely loves it. Very out there kinda bloke very suited towards military life. He joined straight out of high school, and three or four years in he was getting offers to work in the private industry for double and triple the money. Only two more years to go and he'll be picking his salary.

    Anyway, do it mate. If i had my time again and went through with my application I think I'd be better off at the moment.