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Artillery Officer Merged Thread

Hello CSouth,

I had done the following in preparation for my interview -

1. Info on the Internet - I went over all the material that was posted for the trades of my choice on the following websites -
a. www.forces.ca
b. www.forces.gc.ca
c. http://www.army.forces.gc.ca/land-terre/home-accueil-eng.asp
d. http://www.goarmy.com/
e. http://www.army.mod.uk/join/join.aspx
f. http://ftp.rta.nato.int/public//PubFulltext/RTO/MP/RTO-MP-055///MP-055-30.pdf
g. http://www.armee.forces.gc.ca/34gbc/entrevueen.pdf
h. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artillery
i. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Artillery
j. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_Care_Administration

2. Speaking with people in the trade -

For this I went to some of the local militia units. I told them that I was a Regular Force DEO applicant, however I'd like to know more about their job not just to prepare for the interview but to increase my knowledge base. I spoke with members of my family (who are ex and current officers in a foreign army). One of my trade choices was HCA. For this I went and met the administrator of a civilian hospital.

3. Books -

One of the books I invested in was "The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Artillery" by Ian V. Hogg. Before the interview, I had read this book twice from cover to cover.

4. Mock interviews -

I did numerous mock interviews with just myself and my wife. This helped me a lot on the actual day.

5. Knowing the trade, organisation and yourself -

This goes for any kind of organisation. The interviewer(s) will have only a few hours of time in which to interview you. Unlike your family or teachers, they only know you through the paper work that is in front of them - Reliability Screening results, forms submitted during application, degrees, CFAT and medical results, etc. The MCCs give you every opportunity to prove to them that you will be an ideal candidate. It is imperative that you know very, very well the trades of your choice, the CF in general and yourself.

6. Reference/ Commendation letters -

For the interview, I had taken along a folder in which I had kept my degrees, reference letters and commendation letters. (I had not been told to do so). For most of the questions that I was asked, I had a official letter to back the example that I was citing. The interviewers were very impressed with this. They made copies of all my commendation letters and placed them in my file.

7. Dress and deportment -

I had worn a suit for my interview. At the very least one must wear dress clothes with proper lace-up shoes and a tie.

Lastly, I am not a recruiter or a member of the CF. I am just an applicant. The above mentioned pointers stood me well, that is why I am sharing them.

All the best,

I haven't done my Interview yet, but the above seems to be a perfect example of how to be prepared. I don't mean to look down on NCMs at all, but I imagine that as an Officer applicant they'll expect you to show more initiative when it comes to your application. Expanding your knowledge by reading books and seeking out experienced individuals I think is important. I re-submitted my app for Infantry, Armour, and Artillery Officer (DEO) not too long ago myself.

Good luck!
Hi Trick,

You're correct about the initiative part. Going in with all the letters was purely my own brainchild along with all the rest of the preparation which I had done.

The competition these days is fierce. My mindset during the entire selection process has been to get the highest scores at every stage.

Being well prepared, will give one confidence. The interviewers will know right away that this candidate has gone above and beyond the normal expectation. During the interview, I mentioned of my accord all the preparation I had done - like memorizing the names of senior officers, the chain of command, all the guns used by the CF to date, the names of all the brigades along with the brigade commanders, etc. By the time I was finished both the MCCs were quiet for several moments. While showing me the way out, one of the MCCs told me that he had not met anyone else who had done so much prep.

I strongly believe that it is better to be over prepared than under.

Hopefully, one day we get a job offer from the CF!


Ha indeed.

If you don't mind my asking, what trades were you interviewing for, and have you been Merit Listed? I don't see too many DEO applicants for the combat arms, so it's always good to see what their experiences were like!
Allgunzblazing said:
One of the books I invested in was "The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Artillery" by Ian V. Hogg. Before the interview, I had read this book twice from cover to cover.

Trick said:
If you don't mind my asking, what trades were you interviewing for, and have you been Merit Listed? I don't see too many DEO applicants for the combat arms, so it's always good to see what their experiences were like!

I'd say it's safe to say one of his professions of choice was Artillery :p
LOL, yes - Artillery is my first choice. I would choose to be an Artillery O, over a billion dollar lottery.

My application process began in 2009. I had been merit listed for Arty at that time. However my file had to be closed shortly after the Security Clearance forms were sent to DPM Security. (The CF went back to hiring citizens only).

Come 2011, I became a Canadian citizen and my file was reopened. This time I could not put down Arty as a choice, because it was not open. However, I was merit listed and selected by the HCA selection board. They were not able to make a job offer because my security clearance still has to be done by DPM Security.

So, this is the long and short of my application process - been through many hoops many times, but for all practical purposes I'm still at the starting line.
I've stickied this thread based on Allgunsblazing post on research. That is what anyone should be doing for any job not just DEO.  ZGood prep and research will pay off.

Hello Danjanou,

Thank you - it sure feels good to be recognized and appreciated.

You couldn't be more correct about spending time in preparation, be it for the CF or for that matter any job on the civvy street. If one wants something, it is essential to deserve it. Equally important is to prove to the decision makers, that they are indeed making the correct choice.

Although this thread is for Armour/ Artillery DEO applicants, my post was meant for all those who are in the recruiting process.

These are tough times and qualifying for a job offer is not easy. Gone are the days when one needed to jog on the spot for two minutes, then undergo a dental examination, there after take the bus to basic! http://www.legionmagazine.com/en/index.php/2005/03/going-through-the-hoops-to-be-in-the-forces/


I'm the recruiter at a reserve artillery unit.  I'd like to know what training is like for new officers, as I can't ask the officers at my unit because they were all commissioned in the pre-Boer War era.  Currently I have one Ocdt who is taking BMQ with other Pte recruits, and then he's off to BMOQ and then CAP this summer.  What do these courses entail and are they the last step in the training or is there DP1.1?  Thanks in advance, JM.
After Basic the candidate will go through BMOQ. This will introduce them to the map and compass, orders, and if I am not mistaken an overview of the section in battle. This course is designed to lay the ground work of leadership and soldiering skills to get through CAP. (If that is what it is still called)

CAP is 10 weeks and is broken into 5 mods so Reservists can take the course in small packets if needed. (CAP is a combined Reserve/ Reg Force course) Think of CAP as a combination of BMQL and PLQ 1-6. It is usually belt fed cock, much like PLQ. (Of course this seems to change from year to year and may vary with staff) The course tests the candidates ability to lead in a high pressure environment and introduces them to leading a section in battle. Candidates are taught the 9mm Browning pistol, C-9, Grenades, and they qualify PWT 3 on the C7. (At least this is what I was taught in 2006)  CAP is taught by Sgt's for the most part.

After CAP the candidate will attend DP-1. This course, like CAP is broken into modules.  It is a 12 week course with 6 modules. It, like CAP is a combined Reg Force / Reserve Force course. The course will cover the duties of a Recce O, CPO, GPO, and the candidates will learn all of the positions in each one of these jobs. As well they must understand ammo, fire D, and pass the Safety Officers test. Depending on the staff this can be a cock course, but ultimately the cock is the work. The information comes fast and furious and in many cases you are allotted half the time allotted to NCM's to pass the same EO's /PO's. for example the CP tech qualification takes 2 weeks for officers, 4 weeks for Reserve NCM's. (Mind you the NCM course fires more missions and gives its candidates a higher standard of proficiency.  Regardless the tests are the same, and they can be a challenge to put it mildly. Even if you excel at this kind of work, you will still find it work, although I suspect not everyone finds it to be hard work.  DP1.1 is taught by ACK IG's and WO's for the most part.

If anyone can offer any updated info from the last couple years I am sure it would flesh out this scant review.

Hope this helps.

Hey thanks, that helps a lot.  I don't know if it's still called CAP or not, it's either CAP or BMOQ-L.  When I was given this Ocdt's schedule, it had both names on it.  I'm sure the name will change again next year.  But thanks, I was never totally sure what to tell Ocdt applicants what to expect when they go on course, but I could certainly fill gunner applicants in on what they're going to go through, this helps a lot.
One more question related to my last.  Once an Ocdt completes CAP or whatever it's called now, are they then commissioned and do the DP 1.1 as a 2Lt, or do they have to complete the whole process before commissioning?  And at what point do they receive their cap badge?  Is that after the DP1.1?
I am not certain about the OCdt rank change. A DEO is not an officer Cadet, but a 2Lt from the start,  but RMC students are all 2Lt's by the time they do their phase training and they have not completed their degree. I remember on CAP we did have a couple of OCdts, but most of my course were DEO's. I am sure someone will know how that all works.

To go to BOTPL  (CAP) RCA unit candidates all wear the NCM cap badge of the RCA. On the DP1.1 course, no cloth cap badges are allowed, as they are reserved for trained artillery officers only. (Some units allow their CAP qualified officers to wear a cloth cap badge, despite the standing orders to the contrary, but this seems to be pretty limited.) Once the Reserve officer has completed DP1.1 they are given their new beret with cloth cap badge.  Reg Force officers get theirs when they complete 1.2.

Cardstonkid said:
To go to BOTPL  (CAP) RCA unit candidates all wear the NCM cap badge of the RCA.

Which is a terrible policy. Why should they wear the NCM cap badge when they are not qualified on the guns? I remember there was almost a mutiny in my unit when our last cap qualified 2Lt started sporting one...
Cardstonkid said:
seems to be pretty limited.) Once the Reserve officer has completed DP1.1 they are given their new beret with cloth cap badge.  Reg Force officers get theirs when they complete 1.2.

Not anymore. For about a year now even Reg Force officers receive their cloth cap badges upon completion of DP 1.1.
Thanks for the answers guys.  That makes sense, however I find it crazy how anyone can be commissioned as an officer before receiving any training, or how someone can wear an arty cap badge before they're trained on the guns.  I remember a few years ago, 2Lts on a BMQ wearing cornflakes.  I thought that was pretty laughable, but non of them stuck around.  But thanks again, now I fully explain to officer applicants what they can expect when signing up.
I agree it is a bit strange to be giving out the NCM cap badge to untrained officers. I was not comfortable with it at all. (I was the only 2lt in my unit not to come up through the ranks, so to me it was particularly uncomfortable) On CAP it was required that all candidates have a cap badge reflecting their trade, and since the cloth patch was a no go, it had to be the NCM's badge. Personally I felt a cornflake was fine until I had earned something different. I think most untrained officers felt/ feel the same way.

It is good to hear all DP1.1 officers get their cloth cap badge now. It was embarrassing to have half the course get theirs and the other half have to wait until the completion of DP1.2

I realize I'm bumping a really old thread here, but I'm hoping someone with the knowledge will see and help me out. I understand all the different arty officer positions and position by rank (from reading this thread and others) but I'm wondering; at what point (if they do at all) leave the gun line? My assumptions are, once you get promoted to major are you basically no longer out on the gun line? (You're in more administrative role) Or do you always get to be out commanding the troops on the gun line? 
(I'm also assuming it's called gun line, sorry if the battery is called something else.)

Thanks in advance.