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The Army: career area

The Army: career area

An Army career allows you to be at the centre of the action, providing protection, security and humanitarian aid around the world.

Front-line and behind-the-scenes staff work together to protect the UK’s security, helping the Army act as an international peacekeeper and deliver humanitarian aid in more than 30 countries .

The Army is one of the UK’s largest employers.

Graduates usually enter the Army as officers – the managers of the military world – but it’s also possible to join as a soldier. There are opportunities to earn practical and professional qualifications, which can be transferred to many other industries. Whatever your role, adventure, responsibility and travel can all be part of your working life – you’ll be a professional with real responsibility for the safety and security of others.

Job opportunities on offer in the Army

  • Combat allows you to be in the thick of the action. You could play a key role in peacekeeping and humanitarian missions around the world as an infantry soldier, gunner or tank crewman.
  • Engineering is about solving problems – everything from providing plumbing solutions for Army bases to troubleshooting for the complex weapons systems of the Challenger tank.
  • Healthcare specialists look after the Army’s most important and valuable resources: the soldiers, officers and animals. Jobs include doctors, nurses, dental hygienists and biomedical scientists.
  • HR, administration and finance play a vital role in maintaining the smooth running of the Army and the effectiveness of its force.
  • IT and communications involves maintaining technological and communications networks throughout the world. You’ll work with a range of equipment, from telecommunications, data and video, to IT systems, satellite, radio and radio relay stations.
  • Logistics allows the Army to function by making sure the proper resources are available. Logistics experts supply all the resources needed to keep soldiers, equipment and machinery in top condition. 
  • Specialists are required for various positions – you could look after Army horses, join the Royal Military Police, train service dogs or play in an Army band.

Army recruitment

To become an officer in the Army:

  1. Research officer roles via the Army website and apply online. You can also go into an Army Careers Centre for advice. When your form has been assessed you'll be sent a link to an online form to complete about your health and if you pass this medical screening you'll be given a candidate support manager who will help you through the joining process.
  2. You'll be invited for an interview with a senior careers advisor. This is a chance for you to ask questions and also enables the senior careers advisor to assess your suitability. You then fill in your medical declaration and are booked in for a medical assessment.
  3. Attend the Army Officer Selection Board (AOSB). This is in two parts. First there is a 24-hour briefing, followed by a Main Selection Board that lasts for three and a half days. It is an assessment of your intellectual abilities, practical skills and leadership potential. 
  4. If you are successful in passing the Main Board you'll be offered an officer training place at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS). Once you've accepted a place you'll need to attend a five-day pre-course briefing.
  5. You will then undertake the 44-week commissioning course at Sandhurst. This includes training in management and leadership and fitness and weapons handling as well as adventurous training. You'll then go on to a second course to learn skills related to your first appointment. After completing their training most officers are initially taken on for a period of three years, known as a short service commission.