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Logistics vs Healthcare administration officer: army, air force, navy


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I have a Business degree and work in healthcare administration. I am thinking of applying to the Canadian Forces: healthcare administration or logistics officer. Ideally, I would like to live in cities in Canada.
1. What career (healthcare administration vs logistics) and branch would be better for this: army, air force, or navy
2. Which branch would require fewer deployments? How often and long are deployments between branches?

Thank you very much.
CAF Logistics Officer

I would suggest that you go to the Canadian Armed Forces Recruiting site to learn more about being a Logistics Officer or Health Care Administrator.

I spent over 37 years in the CAF and majority of time was as an Army Logistics Officer specializing in Transportation, Supply, Movements (sub-specialty) and later in Operational level Logistics Planning (by experience and advanced training).

A Logistics Officer is trained to specifically work in either the Navy, Army or Air Force, whereas the Logistics Non-Commissioned Member is able to work in all three environments. The Logistics Officer must specialize in either: Transportation, Supply, Finance, Human Resources or Food Services Officer. It is rare to have more than one specialization.

After you finish all your Logistics training you would ideally be posted to an operational unit or a base supporting an operational unit. An operational unit for the Army would be the Service Battalion in either: Edmonton, AB; Petawawa, ON; or Valcartier, Qc. A Naval operational base would be either Esquimalt, BC; or Halifax, NS. An Air Force operational base could be: Comox, BC; Cold Lake, AB; Winnipeg, MB; Trenton, ON, Bagotville, QC; Greenwood, NS or Shearwater, NS. Each posting would last 2-3 years.

Deployments. It all depends on the following: what the government decides; rank level; expertise and level of commitment - how big a force the government wants to sent. During my time we had the Balkan (former Yugoslavia) and Afghanistan as the main operations as well as the smaller one such as the Congo, Sierre Leone, Cambodia and so forth. At this present time this link will take to current CAF operations.
If you belong to an operational unit then there is a chance that you might deploy depending on the following: tour schedule or expediency that the government wants the CAF to deploy forces. The tour length will vary but for major operations, in general, allow for six months to one year of work up training followed by a six months deployment. For small operations allow for one-two months of training before a six months deployment. Some deployments could be up to one year, but many of these ask for volunteers. There is a fix schedule for all known major and minor deployments. The government can and has ordered the CAF to deploy forces at a moments notice especially for humanitarian missions. The shortest notice that I received was three days before I left my family for two months.

Everyone is the CAF is expected to be physically fit and ready for deployments. In my experience, all Logistics Officers, no matter what their specialty deploys - however some less than others like Human Resources Officers or Food Services Officer.

Logistics plays a critical role in any military endeavour. Look at the Russian failures in the Ukraine as the latest example in how the government and military leadership poorly planned operations and didn't give sufficient direction and resources to their logistics system to sustain operations. Note that the working conditions, expectations and consequences of failure for the CAF Logistics Officer are not the same as their civilian Logistics expert.

The higher rank you are the more likelihood that you will be posted to Ottawa and once you are there you can probably stay.

I cannot answer which career would be better if you want to live in cities in Canada.

Probably the Navy would be best for living in cities. Halifax, Victoria, Ottawa, Kingston and Barrie would be the most common cities for you to be able to live in, although there is always a small risk that you could be sent to a smaller location. The Army and Air Force have several large bases that are in small towns. As you progress in rank and age, you will have more opportunity to be in Ottawa and Kingston more than anything.