There has been a consistent trend over the past two decades to reduce the overall complement in all sectors of the British Armed Forces. During the same period there has also been a trend toward the rapid deployment of combat and peacekeeping forces and the provision of humanitarian aid. Both these trends have also been complemented by an increase in the complexity of the equipment used by personnel and in the nature of operations. These broad trends pose several key challenges for the current and future deployment of UK armed forces.

Within the above parameters it becomes apparent that contradictory drivers need to be resolved. Training requirements simultaneously become far more demanding and less easy to specify as a result of the increasingly uncertain nature of future operations and equipment complexity. Furthermore, with a shrinking complement in the UK armed forces it is also highly likely that operational utilisation will increase further reducing opportunities for training.

Several further parameters also need to be incorporated into future manning scenarios. Career progression and personnel retention is becoming a major issue. Highly trained, technically competent personnel need to be retained to ensure operational effectiveness. Changes in the national curriculum (government educational policy) will also result in changes in recruitment and selection policies and the skills, knowledge and abilities of new entry cadets to the services. It is therefore likely that the educational and skills profile of personnel serving in the technical branches of the British armed forces will change slowly but significantly over the next two decades as a result of changes to in-service education and training. These shifts in education and demographic factors need to be anticipated so they may be incorporated into the design of, and training for future equipment and operations.

Training Research

Training and Education Research from Phase Three of the HFI DTC.

Training and Education Research from Phase Two of the HFI DTC.

Training and Education Research from Phase One of the HFI DTC.

For further information regarding this research please contact Professor Bob Stone or Dr John Huddlestone.