Førstegangstjenesten som rekrutteringsbrønn for videre karriere i Forsvaret - en tverrfaglig studie

FFI-Report 2019
Petter Kristian Køber Nina Hellum Torbjørn Hanson
In this study we have applied qualitative and quantitative methods to explore how the Norwegian Armed Forces use the compulsory military service as a recruitment pool. The analysis is based on register data for soldiers born between 1992 and 1996 and field studies in the Army in 2017 and 2018. Around ten percent of the conscripts continue with some sort of active duty after completion of the compulsory military service. Some of these continue with an officer education or in an apprenticeship, but most of them are recruited as enlisted soldiers or specialists. The recruitment rate varies between different parts of the Armed Forces and with the time of year. The recruitment practice is different for different types of service. The conscripts have been subject to a comprehensive selection, and they are by far and large highly motivated and well-skilled. However, we observe that some of the characteristics used in the selection process give an indication of the likelihood of further recruitment. As an example, those who express an interest in international service or military education at an early stage are more likely to be recruited. Gender and school background are examples of factors with no significant effect observed. We also observe that the officers are different from other recruited personnel when it comes to geography, school grades and physical fitness. Conscripts with a strong military performance assessment are more likely to be recruited. This is an indication that the compulsory military service is an important part of the selection process for further service. Local differences and limited recruitment from one part of the Armed Forces to another suggest that there is room for improvement. Evaluation and feedback to the soldiers, active use of mid service interview and leaders who motivate and value all types of service, are examples of possible measures to further strengthen the recruitment. Accommodation and wellbeing are important motivational factors as well. The introduction of universal conscription, a new personnel system, educational reform and further development of the land power have changed and will continue to change the way the Armed Forces recruit personnel. The data in this study cannot be used to evaluate the effect of these changes. However, the results help to identify a number of factors that the Armed Forces need to keep track on throughout the implementation period. The compulsory military service plays an increasingly important role in completing the personnel structures of the Armed Forces. Recruitment to specialist and specialist officers positions, active reserves and the Home Guard will be based on personnel who have completed the compulsory military service. The Armed Forces need to take this in consideration in the selection process and make sure that the selection criteria remain relevant and that there are no conflicts of interest. The potential for recruitment among all conscripts needs to be exploited.

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