Q1 - Who may
join the Canadian Forces?
A1 - Any Canadian
citizen who meets the basic prerequirites of the entry plan for which
he/she wishes to apply may join the Canadian Forces. Landed immigrants
may apply for the Reserves.
Q2 - What are
Non-Commissioned Member entry plans?
A2 - Unskilled
NCM plan: For candidates who have completed high school or have at
least a Grade 10 education or its equivalent, and who wish to learn
one of the many available occupations. They are, of course, subsequently
employed in that occupation.
NCM plan: For candidates who have already achieved a certain level
of competency in one of the available occupations and wish to be employed
in that particular occupation.
Q3 - What are
Officer entry plans?
A3 - Officer Candidate
Training Plan (OCTP): For high school graduates who wish to be trained
and employed in an operational occupation.
Direct Entry Officer
(DEO): For university graduates and technologists who wish to be employed
in their specialized field or in one of the other operational combat-related
or support occupations.
Scheme - Officers (RESO): Intended for individuals pursuing full-time
post, secondary studies. The candidate must be registered as a student
in a full-time study program at a college or a university and is required
to remain in this program for a minimum of two years.
Q4 - If I meet
all the prerequisites, will I be hired?
A4 - Hopefully
so; however, like any other employer, the Canadian Forces have a competitive
selection process. When the number of applications exceeds the number
of vacancies, we must select the most competitive applicants. The
keenness of the competition, of course, varies from one plan or occupation
Q5 - What's
entailed in the selection process?
A5 - The selection
process is complex. Basically, it entails an aptitude test, a medical
exam, a physical fitness test and an interview. In some cases, it
may also entail travel to military units in Canada for familiarization
visits and interviews or, in the case of aircrew applicants, further
Q6 - How short
will my hair have to be?
A6 - Appearance
is important in the Canadian Forces. Both men and women must adhere
to strict hair guidelines. Men must wear their hair short and neat;
but that doesn't mean a crew cut! Women can wear their hair in varying
styles so long as it doesn't extend below the lower edge of the collar
or preclude the proper wearing of military headdress.
Q7 What is
the training like?
A7 - The training
will vary with the field or occupation assigned to you. Because of
its structure and rigidness, the training you will receive from the
Canadian Forces will rank among the best. You'll be taught by some
of the best instructors in the country. And you will continue to learn
with every new assignment!
Q8 - What is
A8 - The Basic
Training programme is designed to introduce you to military life in
a very short time. Emphasis is given to drill and physical fitness
as well as to classroom instruction about the Forces. The course will
last 30 days.
Q9 - I guess
Basic Training is pretty tough?
A9 - There is
no doubt about it, Basic Training is tough, but the time passes very
quickly and you'll discover yourself in great physical shape at the
end of it.
Q10 - Will
civilian employers recognize my military occupation training?
A10 - Where the
occupation you have learned has applications in civilian life, civilian
employers often recognize your training. In fact, some occupations
are recognized by provincial licensing bodies. But don't forget that
our occupations are designed to meet the Canadian Forces' needs and
some have no civilian equivalent.
Q11 - Can I
choose the job I want to learn?
A11 - In the Canadian
Forces, we try to match your interests and your aptitudes with the
job vacancies. If this is not possible, we suggest you consider re-applying
at a later date rather than enroll in an occupation that doesn't really
interest you. There are jobs, however, that require some military
experience in other occupations. These are commontly known as "remuster
trades" and include, but are not limited to, occupations like
Search and Rescue Technician and Clearance Diver.
Q12 - What
if I want to change occupations?
A12 - People are
hired in the Canadian Forces for a specific job. While there is a
provision for "remuster", or change of job, it will only
be considered in exceptional circumstances. As a result, great care
should be taken when indicating your choice of occupation.
Q13 - What
A13 - Like any
job, promotions are awarded according to merit, seniority and application
to your job. Those who give conscientious service can count on promotions
and increases in pay.
Q14 - What
is the pay like?
A14 - Detailed
pay information can be obtained from your local Canadian Forces Recruiting
Centre and in this Web site.
Q15 - Are there
A15 - Yes! There
are several deductions made from your pay such as income tax, employment
and life insurance premiums.
Q16 - Do I
have job security in the Reserves?
A16 - The Primary
Reserve is not a part-time job; if your career, discipline and availability
are not affected, the unit can manage your employment in accordance
with its budget.
Q17 - Will
I have to wear a uniform at all times?
A17 - No. Except
for Basic Training, you wear your uniform only when on duty. The rest
of the time, civilian clothing is okay.
Q18 - So everyone
has to live by the rules?
A18 - The Canadian
Forces are a team, and a team is only as good as the discipline of
its members. We are good team... because we insist that every member
must follow the rules.
Q19 - If I
work full time, can I return to my job after the summer season?
A19 - Is my employer
obligated to take me back? There is a program that groups together
several private companies that can be of assistance to you in obtaining
an authorization from your employer releasing you for the training
Q20 - Once
I become a soldier, am I insured against accidents and accidental
death? What will you do for my family?
A20 - There is
compensation you can receive from the Reserves as well as other forms
of compensation that your estate can receive.
Q21 - If I
have already been a member of the Canadian Forces in an infantry reserve
regiment and I left the Forces, do I have to go through the selection
process again? Can I change military occupations?
A21 - You can
be reassigned to a Reserve unit if you have been transferred to the
Supplementary Reserve (SHR or SRR). Your unit will have to go through
the process of transferring you to the Primary Reserve: verification
of previous service, medical equivalencies and relevant documentation.
If, however, you were not transferred to the Supplementary Reserve,
you must start the selection process again with the Recruitment Centre.
Yes, it is possible to choose a new trade, but this will require an
in-depth equivalency check.