Recruiting them younger and younger

What started out as a normal open day at Jezzine Barracks, Townsville, for 31st/42nd Battalion, the Royal Queensland Regiment (31/42RQR), turned into an exchange of ideas on recruitment.

CAPTIONA young boy is fitted with an Army radio during the 31st/42nd Battalion, the Royal Queensland Regiment, Army Reserve open day. Story by Captain Cath Batch. Photos by Susanna Beyer.

Soldiers shared ideas about how recruiting efforts could be expanded with the help of existing personnel, industry partners and the professional networks of part-time soldiers, including engaging with their workplaces and schools.

Executive Officer 31/42RQR Major Mark Smith asked members about their enlistment journeys and what motivated them to join Army.

“As someone who has been involved in Army for almost 40 years, I am continually impressed by our people,” Major Smith said.

CAPTIONA member of the Australian Army’s 11th Brigade explains the MAG 58 general purpose machine gun to a potential recruit.

“I listened to their ideas and sat back and thought that this young group of soldiers have the answers.”

Major Smith was so impressed by what he heard that he put them in charge of setting a strategy for the regiment.

“It is soldiers who recruit soldiers, and as such we all have the ability to influence, especially in our community and our workplaces,” he said.

“I am putting in plans to give my soldiers the opportunity to start working on their ideas that will fill our vacant roles.

“Our part-time roles are designed to fit in with existing lifestyles and work commitments, and who better to model that experience than our existing part-time soldiers.”

Last month, initial training was made easier for Army’s part-time soldiers with the introduction of the three-week training block trial under the Army Initial Foundation Training continuum.

CAPTIONA potential recruit attempts CPR on a training dummy.


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