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Armed Forces: Recruitment

Defence written question – answered on 10th September 2013.

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Photo of Russell Brown Russell Brown Shadow Minister (Defence)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much funding was allocated to the (a) RAF, (b) Royal Navy and (c) Army for recruitment purposes in each category of expenditure in each financial year since 2009-10.

Photo of Andrew Murrison Andrew Murrison The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

Capturing the cost of recruiting across the armed forces is a complex and resource-intensive task. For financial year (FY) 2010-11, when both the recruitment budget and recruitment targets were below normal levels, these calculations were not carried out. The costs for FYs 2009-10 and 2011-12 are set out in the following table. The cost of recruiting in FY 2012-13 will be available in early 2014.

£ million
  FY 2009-10 FY 2011-12
  Royal Navy Army RAF Royal Navy Army RAF
Manpower 18 84.5 29 20 94.5 23
Marketing 12.5 22.5 12.5 5.5 14.5 9
Infrastructure 1.5 10 4 1.5 4.5 2.5
Other Costs(1) 9.5 22 5.5 5 21 4.5
Total 41.5 139 51 32 134.5 39
(1) Includes sessional doctor fees to carry out candidate medicals; IT costs; sponsorships and bursaries and recruiting staff allowances.

With regards to recruiting into the armed forces running parallel with a redundancy programme, it is vital that all three services continue to recruit in order to maintain the right mix of trained and experienced personnel for the future and to avoid the mistakes of the past that led to critical skill shortages in some roles. As experience has shown, once active recruitment ceases, it takes at least three years of marketing to regain recruiting momentum. In addition, as the armed forces are an organisation that relies on promoting from within, there is a need to ensure that an appropriate number of new recruits are taken on to move up through the system. Maintaining the inflow of new recruits remains a priority because it is essential in ensuring that the armed forces are appropriately manned to meet the future operational demands placed upon it.

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