Rejoiners and Inter-Service Transfers

The RAF offers a wide range of opportunities in the Reserves for civilians as well as ex-RAF. These pages cover vacancies specifically for those who have left regular or reserve service. Vacancies occur in the following categories:

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Previous Regular or Reserve Service?

If you have previous Regular or Reserve Service, including the Royal Navy, Royal Marines and Army, we are interested in you! The RAF ‘Rejoiner’ scheme has started recruiting now…

The RAF strives to be a modern, diverse and inclusive employer, which better attracts, retains and values its people whilst making best use of their talent. To continue to build a workforce fit for the future, we have developed a new approach to recruitment to be able to offer second and subsequent careers to those who have previously served. We understand that individuals transfer between the Armed Forces, private sector and wider public sector, as multiple or ‘portfolio careers’ are growing in demand. Personal and professional circumstances change, so we need to be agile enough to capitalise on attracting our best talent back to the organisation, creating an enduring relationship between the Service Person and the RAF, and not just valuing those who are currently serving.

Previously, returning to service was normally just within the Reserve. Given additional flexibility introduced within our terms and conditions of service, we are now more able to offer more flexible service within the Regulars. More importantly, we are also able to recognise your professional and academic achievements and so consider potential entry above the level you left. If you hold the required knowledge, skills and experience, this ‘lateral entry’ facility will allow us to recruit directly into eligible ranks (initially within the range Corporal through to Wing Commander).

At present, the RAF has a larger number of potential roles suitable for those returning to Service. To support this, there is a new pathway to allow more rapid entry, less processing and reduced training, where not required. Our Rejoiner recruitment policies and process have been made more responsive and will continue to be refined, as our aim is to allow re-entry to service as quickly as possible.

What is the ‘offer’?

We will be offering full Regular terms and conditions of service, enhanced through the ability to offer shorter engagement lengths and, in most cases, surety of your first assignment (the position you apply for). We will also be able to consider re-entry at rank levels above those previously held (subject to your experience).

What can you offer the RAF?

The benefits of us recruiting Rejoiners are clear: you are already trained and experienced; you can quickly deliver within a role and so reduce pressures on the system; and you can bring new ideas back into the organisation and thereby support more innovative ways of working.

How will the recruitment process work?

The recruitment process for Rejoiners, although streamlined, will still be rigorous. We want to select the best talent. Once an application is made (via email), we will conduct an initial eligibility check, medical (if >12mths out of Service), apply tests (where required), conduct a sift and then interview you. This interview will include input from specialists in the relevant field.

What training will a Rejoiner receive on re-entry?

All Rejoiners (officers and airmen) will be required to complete a short 2-week induction course at RAF Halton to prepare you for re-entry into the Service. During the recruitment process we will also look to identify your bespoke training requirements to ensure that training is applied only where it is required.

How will Rejoiners be treated in relation to the wider Regular Service population?

Although most Rejoiners will serve on short initial engagements, they will still be part of the Regular strength and, as such, be part of the deployable force. This means that deployments will be subject to the ‘turnaround times’ for the particular branch or trade in question. Rejoiners will also still be considered for promotions and extensions of service, as is currently considered for the wider Regulars.

Is there an upper age limit or return of Service applied on re-entry?

As Rejoiners will not normally require a significant level of training, there is no formal set upper age limit for applications. As most Rejoiner positions will be for 3+ years, it would be expected that a Rejoiner will be able to complete a minimum of 3 years’ productive Service before age 60 (mandated end of service (MEOS) point). This means that applications will be considered for most positions before an individual’s 57th birthday. Where a Rejoiner position requirement is temporary (<3yrs), as detailed on the job specification, Rejoiner applications may be considered beyond an individual’s 57th birthday. A minimum return of service will only apply if any Phase 2, 3 or specialist training is required which would normally attract such a return of service.

What are the pension and resettlement implications on Rejoining?

Subject to factors such as length of service prior to discharge, break in Service duration, whether a pension or early departure payment (EDP) is in payment etc. there may be financial implications for an individual on Rejoining. Further guidance is available within the booklet at the following link (or search the internet for ‘MMP 116 Re-employment’): Booklet MMP116 - Armed Forces and Reserve Pension Schemes - Re-employment

Should further information be required, individuals are also able to contact Veterans UK on 0808 1914218 to discuss their specific circumstances and so any impact on pensions etc.