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"Re-Royalization", "Re-Britification" and the Heritage Transformation

The RCN has its old rank titles and executive curl back. What should be the next step for the CF ra

  • Nothing. The current rank system works, so leave it alone.

    Votes: 123 56.4%
  • Complete return to the pre-unification ranks of the 50s and early 60s.

    Votes: 45 20.6%
  • Complete return to post unification ranks of the 70s and early 80s.

    Votes: 1 0.5%
  • Officers only return to the pre-unification ranks of the 50s and early 60s.

    Votes: 9 4.1%
  • Copy the UK rank system - it is the prototype anyway.

    Votes: 19 8.7%
  • Copy the US rank system - they are the new colonial master.

    Votes: 3 1.4%
  • Create a whole new Canadian system.

    Votes: 9 4.1%
  • Lobby for standardized NATO rank insignia.

    Votes: 8 3.7%
  • Copy the French rank system - it is the other founding nation's turn

    Votes: 1 0.5%

  • Total voters
    218

Edward Campbell

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One of several problems that Paul Hellyer was trying to solve in the 1960s was remuneration. There had been blue-ribbon study after blue-ribbon study, each of which had told the governments of the days (Con and Lib) that a modern, high-tech military needed a lot of skilled people who would need better pay and benefits to attract and retain them. The governments of the day also heard from folks like you and me and our parents that they had other priorities for the public purse and better pay for soldiers wasn't amongst them.

But, it was a BIG problem and everyone inside DND knew it.

Hellyer solved it.

He "promoted" most of the privates to corporal ~ voila a welcome and needed pay raise. Ditto for the lieutenants. Corporals' jobs were upgraded to sergeant and so on. Some fiddling with the trades pay schemes ensued and the pay problem was on its way to being resolved. I can. tell you that my friends and I and the soldiers who served with us were grateful ... even as we worried about the damage being done to military operational effectiveness because leading a section of six to ten soldiers or commanding tank is a job for a young fellow with, say, 3 to 7 years of experience while being a troop or platoon 2IC and mentoring a young officer is a job for an NCO with, say, 10 to 15 years of experience, but still under 35 years old, with 20 years left before CRA and we were now giving those jobs to older people who, many experienced, combat-proven leaders felt, were less able to withstand the shocks of sustained combat à la 1st Canadian Division in 1943-45.

But, Mr Hellyer solved a big but rarely discussed problem.
 

torg003

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Would the way to "fix" the MCPL rank being an appointment, to do a Hellyer and promote them all to the substantive rank of SGT (with 3 chevrons), and then create a new rank for the actual SGTs with the maple leaf above 3 hooks (Staff SGT? Or maybe Americanize the ranks even more by making them Master SGT)? Obviously not being completely serious but that might be more along the lines DND might do (if they did anything at all, which isn't likely).
 

dapaterson

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Or dump the pay scale, give a $250 monthly premium for the appointment, and increase the number of IPCs for Cpl to 6 or 7.
 

Furniture

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Or dump the pay scale, give a $250 monthly premium for the appointment, and increase the number of IPCs for Cpl to 6 or 7.
I like the idea, but I'd make the premium higher, there needs to be incentive to deal with the extra admin.

I'd also like to see it treated as an appointment more than a rank, so if you're doing poorly it's a simple case of the local CoC removing the appointment, and the member just switching slip-ons.
 

torg003

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Or dump the pay scale, give a $250 monthly premium for the appointment, and increase the number of IPCs for Cpl to 6 or 7.

So would you do the same for a Master (or Staff/Colour) SGT appointment (if there was a need)? That would mean regular SGT would lose the maple leaf (that would only be used for appointment ranks MCPL and MSGT/SSGT).
 

Furniture

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So would you do the same for a Master (or Staff/Colour) SGT appointment (if there was a need)? That would mean regular SGT would lose the maple leaf (that would only be used for appointment ranks MCPL and MSGT/SSGT).
No need for a position like that, the WO/PO1 rank cover that responsibility.

Take at look at the NATO equivalencies charts for ORs, if you're not familiar with them it might help to clarify what Canada does compared to the UK, USA, and others.
 

torg003

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Yes, I am familiar. I wasn't being completely serious. I guess I should've used a smiley.

A serious question in regards to the WO ranks. There were 2 WO ranks (WO I and WO II) and 2 SGT ranks (Staff SGT and SGT) before unification. That was changed to what we have now, 3 WOs and only one SGT rank. Was the elimination of S SGT and replacement with WO rank really needed, or was promoting all S SGTs (and equivalents) to WO just a way Hellyer thought would keep these people from leaving the CF during unification? Just a thought.
 
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McG

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Was the elimination of S SGT and replacement with WO rank really needed …
Were ranks replaced or renamed? If it’s all cosmetic tinkering, why is it worth expending effort now to retinker?
 

Halifax Tar

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You have to remember they had to take all the existing rank systems from the RCN, CA and RCAF and meld them together.

Is imagine this in part responsible for confusion.
 

Fishbone Jones

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Cpl/ MCpl should have the same incentives as a Captain. Not everyone is a leader. Not everyone wants to be a leader. We need Cpls/MCpls that know their job, inside out and backwards, can act independently and be effective in minor leadership roles. They are extremely valuable in this capacity for things like a SSM's running replen, range and ammo parties, small party tasks, etc. I see no reason why there can't be ten incentives for Cpl/MCpl.
 

Weinie

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Cpl/ MCpl should have the same incentives as a Captain. Not everyone is a leader. Not everyone wants to be a leader. We need Cpls/MCpls that know their job, inside out and backwards, can act independently and be effective in minor leadership roles. They are extremely valuable in this capacity for things like a SSM's running replen, range and ammo parties, small party tasks, etc. I see no reason why there can't be ten incentives for Cpl/MCpl.
It was looked at back in the mid-80's when I was a Tech. The problem was that we rewarded people for skills and competence by promoting them, thus ensuring that some would become more and more remote from their competencies/desires. One possible solution was called "lateral trade progression" where people would be incentivized by time in rank and quals. It would have seen a Cpl with extensive experience and courses paid more than the Sgt that s/he reported to. Sadly, it was discarded.
 

dapaterson

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It was looked at back in the mid-80's when I was a Tech. The problem was that we rewarded people for skills and competence by promoting them, thus ensuring that some would become more and more remote from their competencies/desires. One possible solution was called "lateral trade progression" where people would be incentivized by time in rank and quals. It would have seen a Cpl with extensive experience and courses paid more than the Sgt that s/he reported to. Sadly, it was discarded.
Trade Advancement through Skills and Knowledge (TASK) failed as there was no new funding, and no one was willing to bite the bullet and impose a pay freeze for a year or two to generate the spare pay dollars to make it happen.
 

Eaglelord17

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Better off cutting ranks than adding them. Why bother making MCpl a rank when we can cut it out, put Cpl back to leadership rank and move everyone who is a Cpl now back down to Pte 1 hook, or whatever you wish to call it (LCpl etc.). Simply pay them the current Cpl rate and have the new ‘Cpl’ be paid MCpl rate.

There is some advantages to having MCpl being a appointment though, biggest being if they screw up or a Sgt screws up big enough to warrant a demotion they get brought down to Cpl or Pte 1 hook respectively.
 

Furniture

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Better off cutting ranks than adding them. Why bother making MCpl a rank when we can cut it out, put Cpl back to leadership rank and move everyone who is a Cpl now back down to Pte 1 hook, or whatever you wish to call it (LCpl etc.). Simply pay them the current Cpl rate and have the new ‘Cpl’ be paid MCpl rate.

There is some advantages to having MCpl being a appointment though, biggest being if they screw up or a Sgt screws up big enough to warrant a demotion they get brought down to Cpl or Pte 1 hook respectively.
The only big issue with that approach is it makes working with NATO allies harder. I was on a course recently in Belgium, and after chatting with a German counterpart I was surprised to learn that up to OR-6 (Sgt in Canada) is a time-in based promotion in the German air force.

While it's unlikely a Cpl will be working alone in a NATO organization, it isn't impossible, and it makes working alongside our allies harder when the ranks are horribly imbalanced. As an example, in my occupation we make weather forecasters at the MCpl level, in Germany, Belgium, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, etc., forecaster is an officer job. That means we miss out on opportunities to do real value added work with NATO because we are on the wrong side of the OF/OR divide. It's getting better, and there are efforts to make it less about rank, and more about qualifications, but it's a reality we need to deal with.
 
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rmc_wannabe

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The only big issue with that approach is it makes working with NATO allies harder. I was on a course recently in Belgium, and after chatting with a German counterpart I was surprised to learn that up to OR-6 (Sgt in Canada) is a time-in based promotion in the German air force.

While it's unlikely a Cpl will be working alone in a NATO organization, it isn't impossible, and it makes working alongside our allies harder whent he ranks are horribly imbalanced. As an example, in my occupation we make weather forecasters at the MCpl level, in Germany, Belgium, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, etc., forecaster is an officer job. That means we miss out on opportunities to do real value added work with NATO because we are on the wrong side of the OF/OR divide. It's getting better, and there are efforts to make it less about rank, and more about qualifications, but it's a reality we need to deal with.
Saw this first hand working with the MFO in Egypt. Being an E-5 and running the Contingent J6 is confusing and annoying to a lot of our colleagues. Going to a planning conference and being told "when your Officer gets back, we can finalize some things.." Unfortunately, I don't have an Officer, I'm it. Unless a Sig O went out for milk and a pack of smokes and never came back, you're going to have to talk to me....
 

Furniture

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Saw this first hand working with the MFO in Egypt. Being an E-5 and running the Contingent J6 is confusing and annoying to a lot of our colleagues. Going to a planning conference and being told "when your Officer gets back, we can finalize some things.." Unfortunately, I don't have an Officer, I'm it. Unless a Sig O went out for milk and a pack of smokes and never came back, you're going to have to talk to me....
It was amusing talking to OF 2-3 folks about forecasting, and being the guy who goes around inspecting stations to ensure they are meeting the standards as an OR-7. The RN recently introduced PO/CPO forecasters, so they are in a weird way kind of imitating the RCN/CAF.
 

Kat Stevens

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Trade Advancement through Skills and Knowledge (TASK) failed as there was no new funding, and no one was willing to bite the bullet and impose a pay freeze for a year or two to generate the spare pay dollars to make it happen.
I was around for this, and as a Cpl with damn near every Gucci qual a 041 Cpl could have I was all for it, understandably. The only problem is we end up with another DAPS sort of situation; people with no idea of the skills and knowledge involved to do the job and minimal TI but a bunch of leadership theory put in charge of guys making more money and far more job savy.
 

dapaterson

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If we're going to make your life miserable regardless, we should at least give you some more money to make up for it.
 

Edward Campbell

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The only big issue with that approach is it makes working with NATO allies harder. I was on a course recently in Belgium, and after chatting with a German counterpart I was surprised to learn that up to OR-6 (Sgt in Canada) is a time-in based promotion in the German air force.

While it's unlikely a Cpl will be working alone in a NATO organization, it isn't impossible, and it makes working alongside our allies harder when the ranks are horribly imbalanced. As an example, in my occupation we make weather forecasters at the MCpl level, in Germany, Belgium, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, etc., forecaster is an officer job. That means we miss out on opportunities to do real value added work with NATO because we are on the wrong side of the OF/OR divide. It's getting better, and there are efforts to make it less about rank, and more about qualifications, but it's a reality we need to deal with.
It was back in the 1980s but we (AFCENT, then ~ now Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum) had several Canadian Cpls (all Rad Techs) working 100% alone as "mobile repair teams" on the (then new) NATO Integrated Communication System. Each had a small sedan, a tool kit and a boss ~ a Canadian MWO ~ who had his own boss, a German Maj and a USAF LCol. Most NATO techs were Sgts or higher, except ours. The USAF LCol consistently rated the Canadians as his best and most reliable techs.
 

Furniture

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It was back in the 1980s but we (AFCENT, then ~ now Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum) had several Canadian Cpls (all Rad Techs) working 100% alone as "mobile repair teams" on the (then new) NATO Integrated Communication System. Each had a small sedan, a tool kit and a boss ~ a Canadian MWO ~ who had his own boss, a German Maj and a USAF LCol. Most NATO techs were Sgts or higher, except ours. The USAF LCol consistently rated the Canadians as his best and most reliable techs.
We sent forecasters to work with the Germans in Mali, tit was what opened the doors to more work with NATO. The Germans actually were willing to give our WO/Sgt/MCpl forecasters the "NATO" qual to forecast when Canada itself at the time wouldn't. We now even have a position in Germany at the MN MSG, and multinational met forecast centre.

In Canada ECCC is deeply rooted in the Canadian Forces Weather and Oceanographic service, and they have an interest in keeping Met Techs out of forecasting jobs. The Germans didn't have the same job security concerns and were more than happy to recognize our forecaster's skills.
 
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