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Recruitment and Army Essay

1.0 Opportunities and dangers to be considered by the Army in externalising the recruitment processes. a. Preston (2012 P.36) shows how the two-way process of recruitment ‘should be as much about the applicant finding out whether the business is right for them as about whether they are deemed acceptable by the business’.

c. Having employment opportunities for the soldiers who are being made redundant will allow the knowledge and experience of ex-soldiers to remain forefront of recruitment helping recruiting the right person be more effective. An explanation by Preston (2012, P.36) tells us how if ‘appointees don’t fit then profitability is affected’; this key can show that the benefits of externalization will bring spending cuts by selecting only the right persons increasing retention.

d. Being seen as ‘perverse’ is a danger because if the Army gives a bad image of high staff redundancies while spending highly on hiring this could be open to stereotypic views as Preston explains ‘Many people are deterred from entering certain professions because of general stereotypical images which exist in their society or culture’ (2012, P.38). Col Richard Kemp in the case study says how ‘previously using a civilian company was not a success’. This could have a detrimental impact upon future recruits if the civilian company cannot deliver what is expected. It will also have an impact upon the Army’s image if it doesn’t work out the second time round.

2.0 Methods of selection and their advantages and disadvantages for selecting soldiers.

Interviews – Used to understand key facts of the job and recruit for either parties and determine suitability to one another. This method is an opportunity the Army can utilize to lay out main facts of what they have to offer. It’s also a chance for the recruit to decide whether or not they are happy with the opportunities. The advantage to the Army using this method would remove unexpected expectation at an early stage reducing cost from training soldiers who realized it’s not what they thought at a later stage. The disadvantage however would be that interviews are seen as ‘too subjective to the individual and place a ‘cloud’ over an individual’s ability (Preston, 2012 P.43)

Tests – Used to measure a person’s ability and aptitude relevant to the job. This Method would allow the Army to see suitability of potentials under set tests giving a further indication on whether the Army is a job the candidate is suitable for before subjecting them to full training further reducing cost at an earlier convenience. Preston (2012) also explains that this can also be a way to reduce inherent subjectivity of the interview method. This method has disadvantages of not being able to incorporate all what the Amy needs to see as some areas of the Army require more subjective tests. This can increase costs if at a later stage the applicant is found unable to cope with certain areas of the job and pulls out.

Assessment Centre – Can show the applicant in certain situations relevant to the job. This shows the Army the recruits in a role play scenario or group activity which can indicate the applicant’s ability under a selection of techniques in multiple combinations. This can incorporate a more subjective assessment of the individual so it can be determined further whether the Army can offer a position to the recruit. This would help the Army in selecting those who are of correct skill level generating more quality recruits increasing retention. However the assessment centers only provide the Army with a short insight to certain scenarios as the Army is a specialized area of recruitment the individual cannot be seen faced with all possible problems the recruit may encounter as a soldier.

3.0 Recommendations for organising induction and socialisation of newly hired soldiers to enhance retention.

Induction is whereby a new recruit is welcomed into the organisation through a short term introduction to areas shown by Preston (2012, P45) like what their job description is, what’s expected of them or underlining policies and procedures. Such inductions are critical to the Army as it helps new recruits become accustomed to their surroundings and allows them to adopt the organisational culture and written rules helping them understand what is expected and what is accepted. Typical activities include group welcoming (showing videos), simple team working (to help get to know each other) and tours of the premises (to learn the surroundings).

Socialisation is a long term process shown by Preston (2012) to ‘help understand in terms how the newcomer makes sense of the business and their role within it’. This would be of importance to help the Army ensure the recruits are following the correct procedures and polices but also helping to keep track of the recruit’s process ensuring they are settling in and managing well. To help the activities could include meetings to see the recruit’s progression, group socialising to help with settling, appraisals to show they are doing well and promotions to help encourage further progression.

To help improve retention and reduce dropouts induction techniques recommended would be having already serving soldiers at a welcome day to have questions asked and stories from first hand experiences. As documented by Harding (2011) in the case study ‘the most effective recruiters were young soldiers who had already served on operations’. This could expel any rumors and help new recruits understand the demands of Army life at an early stage. This technique would also allow the introduction of policies and procedures and what to expect.

Using mentoring as a socialising technique would give recruits quantitative information based on their progression into the business and how well they are integrating into the role. This information can be persuading for new recruits to show them they are on the right track and doing well, resulting in increased momentum and a desire to keep going. As Preston (2012) says ‘socialisation is understanding how the newcomer makes sense of the business and their role within it’. Mentoring through the early stages can keep track of the recruit and provide them with the help and support to succeed in turn, reducing dropouts and increasing quality recruits.


Harding T. (2011) ‘Army to pay civilian firm £1bn to recruit new soldiers’ The Telegraph 11 October [Online]. Available at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/defence/8819327/ Army-to-pay-civilian-firm-£1bn-to-recruit-new-soldiers.html (Accessed 1 September 2014). Preston, D (2012), An introduction to human resource management in business, Milton Keynes, The Open University.


From the tutor group forum discussions I have learnt that there are many views on what people have in the work place. The work place HRM polices and business cultures can be dramatically different from business to business and different people have different views on them and how they incorporate them into their working lives. Activity 2.3 shown how businesses HRM polices and culture can mix well or clash badly as such Pauls Bourne shows how that if people of a work place buy into the ‘norm’ this can sometimes override what the HRM polices state resulting in problems.

However that HRM polices should be a state of first call when people need to be reminded what is truly expected of them in the place of work. All the ideas coming together has taught me to think more logically about the place I work and how the business culture is upheld through normal behaviour of people through unwritten rules up to the policies and procedures in place to help maintain a uniformed business.


Bourne P, (2014) ‘Activity 2.3 HRM and Culture’ The Open University 19 November 2014 [Online]. Available at https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/forumng/discuss.php?d=1210164 (accessed 25 November 2014).

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