What's happening at the
Sunday 20 Aug 2017 | 12:22 | SYDNEY
Sunday 20 Aug 2017 | 12:22 | SYDNEY
Debates

ADF recruitment abroad

26 May 2009 15:14

Cameron Crouch is author of the forthcoming 'Managing Terrorism and Insurgency: Regeneration, Recruitment and Attrition'.

The recently-released Defence White Paper is an ambitious document. It proposes the acquisition of significant maritime and aerospace capabilities and the expansion of the ADF to approximately 57,800 personnel. Attracting sufficient numbers of recruits to help realise these goals will be (as the White Paper notes) ‘one of the most significant challenges facing Defence.’

To meet this challenge, the White Paper canvasses a number of proposals, including improved remuneration, providing greater flexibility in housing choices, and the development of a Multicultural Recruitment Strategy. These are worthy prescriptions, but are primarily focused on increasing demand for ADF positions. There would thus appear scope for Defence to develop complementary strategies aimed at increasing the supply of potential recruits.

COMMENTS

27 May 2009 11:06

I know I'm supposed to be writing about the role of Arab women in politics (and I am), but I felt the need to reply to this post proposing that the ADF go overseas in search of recruits. As a starter, Cameron Crouch proposes looking in Fiji, the Philippines and South Africa for high quality personnel.
 
My first question would be 'why?', followed closely by 'what does Cameron understand to be the critical trade shortfalls that the ADF faces now and into the future?' The ADF is an increasingly high technology force, and the critical trades tend to be those where technical skills are hard to obtain because of the educational competencies necessary to qualify for the training, which itself is long.

COMMENTS

27 May 2009 16:53

Two reader responses below to Cameron Crouch's post, first from Peter Layton, then Marc Gugliotta. Cameron will respond to these and Rodger Shanahan's post soon:

Cameron Crouch makes some good points. I would suggest, though, that focusing recruitment on the South-West Pacific could have some advantages beyond the ADF. Cameron’s concept of offering Australian citizenship is one means but perhaps it is worth examining an alternative of the external recruits from the Pacific returning home after their service. If they left the ADF after, say, 15-20 years service with a reasonable pension and lump sum they would be able to open small businesses and invest in the local communities they returned to, buying housing, raising familles and becoming a beneficial influence in their local social and political community. 

They would bring needed skills, expertise, knowledge and transnational contacts and relationships back home to enrich their local communities, and also Australia, in a long-term interdependent manner. It is in a way a form of assistance to local communities, but in terms of recompense for service rendered and not a handout. 

COMMENTS

28 May 2009 15:13

Earlier this week, Cameron Crouch proposed a foreign recruitment scheme for the ADF. Below, Cameron responds to criticisms of his idea.

In response to the comments from Rodger Shanahan:

First, Nadi, Manila and Johannesburg were provided as examples of possible locations to establish recruiting centres, not as a definitive list of countries from which an overseas recruitment scheme would seek to source potential recruits. No applicant should be precluded simply based on their country of origin.

COMMENTS