Other Ranks (Non Technical)
General Entry (Non-Technical Trainee) is the term used to describe the large number of non-technical jobs available to people entering the Air Force as airmen (non-officer entry) and for which training is provided. Each trade in the Air Force is referred to as a mustering; for example, the Cook trade is a mustering.
General Entry (Non-Technical Trainee) Airmen graduate from recruit training with the rank of Aircraftman/Aircraftwoman and generally progress to leading Aircraftman/Leading Aircraftwoman after 12 months productive service following completion of initial employment training and successful completion of workplace competencies. Further promotion to Corporal, Sergeant, Flight Sergeant and Warrant Officer is based on performance, time in rank, vacancies and the successful completion of promotion courses.
Corporals are referred to as Non-Commissioned Officers, or NCOs, while Sergeants and Flight Sergeants are called Senior Non-Commissioned Officers (SNCOs). Warrant Officer is the most senior airman rank. A Corporal will normally have some responsibility for the supervision of junior staff and this progressively increases on promotion to Sergeant and Flight Sergeant. A Warrant Officer normally has a substantial personnel management role.
The Air Force has a system whereby serving airmen may, in certain circumstances, be appointed as officers. The prerequisites vary depending on your mustering, the preferred officer specialisation, your rank, performance history and a number of other factors.
Other Ranks (Non Technical) (Reserve)
Entry to the Firefighter mustering is limited to ex-serving Air Force Firefighters with a minimum of three years service or members transferring from other branches of the Australian Defence Force who have been trained at the the RAAF Security and Fire School (RAAFSFS). Additional training to provide entrants with Air Force specific Rescue and Firefighting (RFF) skills may be provided.
Air Force Reserve Firefighters are employed to augment permanent Air Force members and as such are expected to maintain RFF skill sets applicable to rank, grading and area of employment. In order to maintain skills, members are offered a sufficient number of training days (in accordance with Reserve Wartime Establishment WE band requirements). Air Force Reserve members must be capable of regaining currency within the provisions of: Notice to Move (NTM) and Chief of Air Force preparedness Directive (CAFPD).
Training requirements for Reserve members who are members transferring from other ADF Services may be determined by Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). This process is conducted by the Mustering Sponsor with due consideration to competency assessment in consultation with the Senior Mustering Advisor and the RAAFSFS. Recommendations from assessments are dispatched to Directorate of Personnel. Any member with previous ADF service will have their seniority recommended by the Firefighter Mustering Sponsor.
RAAFAR members are required to attend for a minimum of 32 training days each fiscal year. This may include a continuous training period of 14 days. Subject to operational requirements, approval may be granted to work additional days.
A RAAFAR member may volunteer for a period of full-time service with the Permanent Air Force, provided the member's services are required.
During RAAFAR service all members are required to complete the following General Service training:
- six monthly physical fitness test; and
- annual induction/refresher training consisting of first aid medical care, first attack firefighting, equity and diversity, security, weapons and Ground Defence.
Applicant Selection Process
Entry into the RAAFAR is by selection to fill available vacancies. The selection standards are the same as those for joining the Permanent Air Force.
Initial contact to join the RAAFAR is made through either the local RAAFAR squadron or an Australian Defence Force Recruiting Centre or by telephoning 13 19 01. A Careers Counsellor will provide information and discuss various aspects of the RAAFAR. In addition, your qualifications for the desired position will be discussed.
Following receipt of your application, you will normally be called into the nearest Australian Defence Force Recruiting Centre for testing. Testing generally takes a full day and includes:
- a medical examination;
- aptitude testing;
- a psychologists interview; and
- a recruiting officer interview.
The cost of travel to and from the Australian Defence Force Recruiting Unit, as well as accommodation costs for country applicants, will be met by the RAAF.
Applicants who are assessed as suitable will be considered in competition with all other suitable applicants for the positions available.
Further information on part-time ADF careers can be found by accessing the Defence Reserves website.
The Air Force High Readiness Reserve provides a short notice response force to complement the full-time Air Force in the event of a declared Defence emergency. The High Readiness Reserve is a category of the reserve that draws its members from the trained people already providing service in other categories of the Air Force Reserve, and consequently is not generally open to direct civilian entrants. Entry to the High Readiness Reserve is through the RAAF Active Reserve or RAAF Specialist Reserve. After completing your training in the Active Reserve or Specialist Reserve, you may then volunteer for the High Readiness Reserve. Volunteer service in the High Readiness Reserve attracts an annual bonus of $5000 to compensate for additional obligations and commitment, as well as an annual allowance of $2500 to help maintain the health and fitness required for short notice service.