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Quarter of RAF trainee pilots to be sacked

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Quarter of RAF trainee pilots to be sacked

Old 15th Feb 2011, 08:39
  #121 (permalink)  
 
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There is little point comparing this to Bernard Gray's appointment. One of his predecessors was also pulling an Admiral's pension and was notorious for ruling that it was acceptable to knowingly waste huge sums while saving money at the expense of safety. (He wasn't named by H-C or Gray in their reports). If Gray rescinds such rulings he is worth every penny. Big IF though.


As for notifying by e-mail - utterly despicable. One of the civil service practices the Army should not have adopted. At least it seems they didn't copy it to everyone, as happened to an old boss of mine.


Regarding loss of pilots, I hope there is an equivalent loss at the top of the pyramid.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 08:40
  #122 (permalink)  
 
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SNCOs an WOs are the backbone of all services. To treat them is such a callous manner is indicative of the prevailing mindset in the MOD. My distaste at this treatment is tempered by my low expectations from these incompetents.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 08:52
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I trust that someone is getting prepared for the "Hats On" interview.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 09:26
  #124 (permalink)  
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Some interesting letters in the ex-torygraph today and not one sympathetic to the RAF.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 09:33
  #125 (permalink)  
 
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To simply terminate the baby pilots' commissions after investing millions in their training is illogical and irresponsible, as was destroying the brand new, never used Nimrods. Babies thrown out with the bathwater!
A more sensible solution would perhaps be to complete the training of those approaching wings standard and then transfer them to the reserve. They would then form a pool of basic qualified officer pilots who could be brought back in if needed and willing the next time we have a shortage, as I am sure we will.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 09:39
  #126 (permalink)  
 
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I once got a letter dropped off by a Chinook somewhere near the Bihac Pocket, telling me I wasn't being made redundant. Gutted!

To those who are about to have their dreams smashed; chins up folks. Wishing you 'good luck' is totally inadequate, but by getting this far, you have already demonstrated that you can rise to the top. Now remember that we are measured not by how we respond to success, but by how we react to setback. You're only truly down and out when you don't get back up.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 09:45
  #127 (permalink)  
 
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Since Pontious first went solo, it has been that elements of the military community have not spoken to each other. For example: We recruit 20 people to a specific trade to fill vacancies of ...ergh ...20! But one gets chopped, one is on long term sick through injury sustained in training and one bangs out because he misses his mum. Assuming there are no other problems, we get 17 through to advanced training. We do not and never have done recruit the extra three for attritition, either in projected planning or making up a deficit within the same finacial year. The same story applies to promotion lists when some selected for promotion either PVR anyway or if airman trades, get commisioned instead.

To the point: Manning have always be detrimentally focused without the flexibility required to think 'bigger picture'. We can be pretty certain that there is no logic being applied to present events to cater for PVRs on hold awaiting redundancy decisions, or gambling on the perceived uptake in the civil aviation related job market. ....and therefore the future overswing in Manning and subsequent shortage of persons across the spectrum from Ab-Initio recruit to CR Jet Jock is a dead cert.

.... and as for the Army WOs getting their UB40 by eMail today:
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 10:04
  #128 (permalink)  
 
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SNCOs an WOs are the backbone of all services. To treat them is such a callous manner is indicative of the prevailing mindset in the MOD. My distaste at this treatment is tempered by my low expectations from these incompetents.
In the early 90s my SNCO got a signal sending me on a OOA without the [then] requisite amount of notice. I was called in for an office chat with her and my flight cdr and everyone was very helpful and supportive. I had a wife but no kids, and it wasn't even anywhere dangerous (well, Al Qaeda blew it up 6 months after I left). On reflection my bosses' response was a bit too much.

My point is stuff was done sensitively and with considerations for the individual wherever possible. There were also double the number of people then. That f**king people about has now become routine is no excuse for not still treating them like people, and stuff like redundancy nominees should be treated as extremely (that's bold, size 5, underlined in italics) sensitive until the individual has received the courtesy of being told. Whoever ignored that courtesy through slapdash procedure needs a stiff bollocking.

In 2006 I wrote a very robustly worded letter to the RAF News about how 30 or so people on my current OOA det had about 2-3 weeks left of det but nobody had nominated replacements (so couldn't tell families a homecoming date / plan etc), while others were getting dates a week or so after their 'finishing post' date. As most of us know, stuff like coming home date really matters. The letter took me hours to get just right so I was a bit peeved it was never published. Wrote to the editor of RAF News who explained it had been sent to the right person for an official reply but nothing was heard back even after a reminder. Editor then reminded me he worked for Pravda.

Defence cuts apart, the one free win (low hanging fruit if airships ever read this) that's within our grasp is to get better at managing people. 'Open door' is like IiP - meaningless unless something tangible results, so how about using JPA to show people where they are on various lists, not forgetting some stuff (eg. redundancy) still needs to be done by humans first!
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 10:06
  #129 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Yozzer View Post
We recruit 20 people to a specific trade to fill vacancies of ...ergh ...20! But one gets chopped, one is on long term sick through injury sustained in training and one bangs out because he misses his mum. Assuming there are no other problems, we get 17 through to advanced training. We do not and never have done recruit the extra three for attritition, either in projected planning or making up a deficit within the same finacial year.
I guess it depends on how you look at it.

If one school has an input of 18 per month and the next school can accept only 14, how do you account for the 4 spare bods?

You cite 3 cases for attrition but it is a fact that a number will also washout during training. I later kept the stats at the one Nav school and the percentage dropping out for medical or personal reasons was a near constant 3-4%. The numbers being recoursed was also a near constant 40%. The numbers getting chopped was again pretty static at 20%.

Numbers in-to-training are always greater than the numbers required on the front line. This is a very delicate balance and better success in training resulted in more getting through to wait operational conversion. A change in the training syllabus, when we switched from training V-bomber Navs, resulted in fewer being recoursed early on but I think the overall failure rate remained near 20%. Oddly that was exactly the same as 50 years ago when we had 2 Nav Schools.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 10:22
  #130 (permalink)  
 
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Getting your facts right...

Endured the rant by one ex senior army officer this morning on 5 Live bemoaning the state of the MOD post Nu Labour..."appalling management"... he was corrected by the presenter who informed him that it was the Army not the MOD who had sent the emails.. attention to detail old chap if you ask me...undid his rant in a [email protected]

5d2d
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 10:41
  #131 (permalink)  
 
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I post the quote below, from the BALPA website, merely for info. I don't know what it really means or entails. If you are a military pilot, and an associate (?) member of BALPA, as I was when in the RAF (subs were then £24 a year), maybe you should contact them and see what they can offer.

BALPA STEPS IN TO HELP REDUNDANT RAF PILOTS, WARNS OF SHORTAGE AND CALLS FOR SUMMIT Commenting on the news that a quarter of the RAF's trainee military pilots are to be made redundant (some a few hours short of their Wings) Captain Mark Searle (Chairman of the British Airline Pilots' Association) said 'This is bad news all round, but it is not an uncommon experience for many civilian pilots who have invested £130,000 of their own money to get a commercial licence and then find they face life as a casual employee or being "let go" without warning.

'But the military announcement should ring alarm bells with anyone who cares about UK aviation.'

With many military pilots eventually finding themselves at the controls of commercial aircraft, today's cuts, he said, when combined with the increasingly cyclical hire and fire nature of commercial aviation, will mean that in the mid to long term UK plc is going to find itself with a pilot shortage and less able to compete as a nation.

BALPA's tactical response to the announcement will be to step up the help it gives to its military members with support on job opportunities, guidance on entering the world of commercial aviation and access to pilot mentors.

'But the more strategic approach is to continue to press individual airlines to shoulder more of the responsibility for training,' said Jim McAuslan, General Secretary of BALPA.

' With few exceptions airlines have walked away from their responsibilities to put something akin to apprenticeship back into the industry. The military's decision adds to the problem.'

Captain Mark Searle said that the Government has tough choices to make on public expenditure, and no one envies them. 'But it could do more to help. For instance, now faced with making 100 skilled trainees redundant, it could call a high level summit to look at 'joined up solutions' between military and civilian operations. It could knock some heads together in the industry to get apprenticeships moving.

' Longer term it could look at a new loan scheme (akin to student loans) to get able students, whatever their background, into the profession rather than the commercial loans that have to be repaid over three years.'

BALPA, Jim McAuslan said, is ' bristling with ideas - all we need is to be asked.'
Bad times, really bad times ......
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 11:05
  #132 (permalink)  
 
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Whilst a lot of what is said in the BALPA statement above is encouraging for those about to be 'shown the door' his comment ....

but it is not an uncommon experience for many civilian pilots who have invested £130,000 of their own money to get a commercial licence and then find they face life as a casual employee or being "let go" without warning
is a bit of a reality check (wake up call?) on what colour the grass is on the other side as well!
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 11:15
  #133 (permalink)  
 
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Does anybody know what criteria is being used to make the decisions ? By this, I mean is it purely on training sorite assassment or is there some other method ?

I ask as I wonder if the senario will occur where a chopped FJ stude will some how crossover to a ME slot ( assumeing he was a nil training risk who in "normal" times would have been a dead cert for CR on a Harrier Sqn).

I hope I am making sense and my thoughts are with all of the students and staff today.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 11:43
  #134 (permalink)  
 
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Is there no option for some of the RW students to transfer to the AAC (assuming they wish to do so)?

The AAC are apparently not cutting back on training, so surely it would make sense to recruit some of the RW RAF students?
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 11:48
  #135 (permalink)  
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It's worse than 100 ..

A small but well-placed bird tells me that the briefing note says 170 will go, not 100.

Expect to see rather a lot of very disgruntled young chaps/chappesses from 17.00 today at the secret Salop training base.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 12:09
  #136 (permalink)  
 
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Randomrover

You said the RN had quietly dismantled its entire FW set up with little fuss, implying I think that the crabs should suck it up better? Can't let that pass.

The RN (cleverly) sent a number of its FW pilots to the USA to fly for a few years. One has to ask for justification for this on going cost.

Also - RN maintains the RN Fixed Wing Standards outfit. With no RN fixed aircraft to fly or fixed wing role for many years, how do you justify that?

Both these measures keep the pilots flying, and good on them for that, I wish them well with envy! But don't tell us the RN manned up to their pain better. How many of their FW pilots are actually out of a job? Didnt the rest get re-roled?

Can we just see this whole mess as sh!t for all aircrew regardless of service or brevet type?

Any news from valley yet?
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 12:22
  #137 (permalink)  
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The RN (cleverly) sent a number of its FW pilots to the USA to fly for a few years. One has to ask for justification for this on going cost.

Also - RN maintains the RN Fixed Wing Standards outfit. With no RN fixed aircraft to fly or fixed wing role for many years, how do you justify that?
1. The RN is to receive a carrier sometime in the next few years, and perhaps even some aircraft to launch from it. The cost of re-gaining the skills is much more expensive than the cost of maintaining them.

2. FRADU.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 12:25
  #138 (permalink)  
 
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A-A. I'm amazed that your little bird has the gall to tell you such salacious stuff. We were specifically briefed NOT to discuss numbers outside the room. Disgraceful the lack of loyalty some people show.....Oh, the irony of that statement!
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 12:42
  #139 (permalink)  
 
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no, I said fixed wg stds and that's what I meant

I refered to the RN's Naval Flying Standards Flight (Fixed Wing), based at Yeovs (who I understand are a detatched unit under FRADU). Their role is Fast Jet Continuation Trg, Fast Jet Familiarisation Trg, convex of rotary to FJ pilots...

According to SDSR, which we are told is driving this whole mess, there won't be any fixed wing aircraft to fly off the new CVS(s) before 2016-2018, so ...? We're going to keep these outfits going in the meantime?

Don't get me wrong, I am glad the guys are still flying. Even if you can argue that we need people flying F-18s for 5 years in preparation for the possibility of future CVS ops, I don't personally think you can justify Fixed Wing Standards. There has to be savings to be made in having that sort of thing subsumed by the joint military flying environment.

PS - why are the RN still training fighter controllers? Is this combined with French language courses in preparation for our Charles de Gaulle ops?

Let's not get picky - we're all feeling it. My point was just that I bit at the previous comment about the RN dismantling their FW system and not crying about it. They haven't which is why they didn't.

But today is mostly about the RAF's pilots and trainee pilots getting seen off, justified by SDSR or not. People are devasted. Hope there's a good supply of old pianos in the Vale of York, Linconshire and Anglesey...
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 12:49
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"There is said to be growing fury in the upper ranks of the RAF, with the Chief of the Air Staff in conflict with senior commanders over the scale of cuts. RAF command was a “crucible of ill-feeling and that starts at very, very senior levels”, a senior military figure said"

Well, if they feel that strongly about it, they know what they can do... but I bet a pound to a pinch of sh*t that none of them do.

Sympathy for the 38 WO's as well... but in the same way as the trainee pilots, these figures are being released as a political weapon through the press in order to try and discredit the decision makers/try and put one over on MOD/cause embarrassment, etc etc.

It wont have been done this way through incompetence. It would have been deliberately leaked in this manner to cause exactly the effect it has... for 24 hours until Joe Public has forgotten about it and moved back on to what happened in last night's EastEnders...
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