In 2010 while DAGging for Op CADENCE, I was found deficient due to an incorrectly entered vaccination in my immunization book. The vaccination had been administered a few years earlier prior to another deployment by CFHSC Ottawa. (I had deployed twice following this with no issues.) The Comd LFCA was very insistent that no waivers would be granted during the DAG process and the look on my CO's and TF Comd's faces when they saw a one of their TF RSMs sitting on the "bench of shame" was priceless. Notwithstanding their reaction, I was DAGGed RED in the interim and I had to return a couple of days later to be re-vaccinated and have my book updated.
All that to say I'm thrilled that PPCLI Guy was able to institute a wholesale review, which was probably 20 years overdue. It's disheartening that the DAG and RTHR processes don't evolve and adopt lessons learned. Instead we often were not DAGging/training for Roto 10, we're DAGging/training for Roto 0 for the tenth time.
I deployed three times to NI in the British Army, as a Reg F member.
The first time, I was fresh out of Sandhurtst (which included some pretty good COIN training) and all I needed was a quick 2 week upgrading course at NITAT Ballykinlar, in NI, prior to being attached to my unit.
The second and third times I went through the full workup package with my regiments, managed by NITAT at Hythe and Lydd. One for a rural tour, and another for a Belfast tour.
Each of these 'full meal deal' experiences represented, from start to finish, about two months of intensive training. Specialist skills, like drivers and search team members, were trained concurrently. Some, like the Int teams, were pulled away to start their training before the main unit training as they had alot more to hoist in. We had some reservists attached to us on these tours and they joined in the training, and then deployed, with us. I don't think we 'rejected' any of these guys but in both cases (Parachute Regiment and Royal Marines) we had reservists who had passed the relevant selection programs - P Company, Commando Course - to make it into those units in the first case. Their total time away from work/ home would have amounted to about 8 months, max.
Fast forward to my experience in the CAF during the Afghanistan experience.
I was a militia rifle company OC during this period of about 4 or 5 years when, for reservists, the work up period seemed interminable, months and months, and was consistently... well... inconsistent. We never really knew when we had to send people, and to where, and to what levels they needed to be trained and prepared prior to attending workups. It was always a colossal PITA for everyone involved, and skewed the whole unit training cycle to try to accommodate the vagaries on the system. In some ways, I don't think the Reserves have ever recovered from this.
I considered deploying myself but faced the prospect of being away from my business and family for up to a year given the interminable workup phase, the tour itself, then the wind down afterwards, plus all the associated uncertainties. This would have put me out of business, and probably seen me divorced as well, so I canned that idea after a hard look in the mirror. I know at least two reservists, one of whom deployed twice, whose businesses and family lives failed because they deployed, and they struggled to succeed in the civilian world following their tours.
All that to say is if we had a really slick, efficient, well integrated system of some kind you could quite easily be able to rely on the reserves to do what they're supposed to do: surge in to support the Reg F as required. Right now we're more of a hindrance than a help, it seems, and have been left to go play with our toys on our own in the corner while not contributing much of anything important to the overall effort.