In the modern age, the military is under increasing pressure not only to perform to the highest possible standard, but also to hold its members accountable for their actions in the face of a growing media pressure and influence. With so much focus now turning towards the actions of those employed by the military and defense services, and with the range of threats always increasing, finding the right person for the right job has become increasingly important. As such, the standards and requirements of those accepted into military service, especially in specialist roles, have come under far greater examination. With the a desire to get the very best in personnel, and to provide the absolute best defense possible, what can the military do to ensure the highest standard of recruits?
Rise of the Drones
The growing use of unmanned aircraft and military tools has begun the process of distancing the soldier from the front line. With this increased distance from the actual affray, the requirements and selection process will surely change, reflecting the changing skill sets necessary for an effective military campaign. While there will be always be a need for dedicated infantry, the role of the average military personnel has undoubtedly changed over the years. As warfare and defense continues to evolve, the rise of unmanned vehicles reflects the next step in military recruitment, just as the rise of the first aircraft and the advent of trench warfare changed requirements in the first half of the twentieth century. With a change in the roles necessary for a successful defense program, the change in parameters will surely be altered to reflect the best possible deployment of unmanned military hardware. Still in its nascent stages, this change in tactics and resulting recruitment requirements may not yet be understood, but recruitment requirements will steadily change to reflect how best to implement the military’s full range of technological advances.
A Matter of Trust
In recent times, there have been several high profile cases of important information being leaked to an unintended audience. The cases of both Bradley Manning and Edward Snowdon, regardless of the intent or morality of their actions, demonstrate a growing need for military institutions to re-evaluate the screening process for those exposed to secure information. Despite working in entirely different branches of the United States’ defense organisation, the impact of these leaks cannot be underestimated. As such, the armed forces will surely look to protect itself from future such releases, and the hiring of trustworthy and reliable staff can become a key component of that. There are many approaches to evaluating this aspect of a person, though there are early reports of a potential recruits wider family becoming a concern, especially when not a citizen. The integrity of information is a vital commodity in any aspect of the military, and the ability to trust is not only a vertical employment concern, but a horizontal one as well. With one man (or woman) able to have such a large an impact on such a huge an organisation as the Army or the NSA (Manning and Snowdon, respectively), then future employees will surely be evaluated as to the trust they can be granted when possessing such delicate and destructive information.
Fit and Healthy
With healthcare a current subject of political contention, there can be no discussion of the armed forces need for those they recruit to be among the fittest and healthiest available. Whether serving on the frontline or in an administrative capacity, a healthy staff is a productive staff. With so many possible causes as to why a recruit might be unfit for service, getting a good idea of candidate suitability before even approaching the recruitment process is now possible. For those dedicated to joining the military, it could be necessary to undertake medical examinations on their own behalf before enlisting. With so many medical facilities now available at home, the availability of information provides a means for those with pre-existing conditions to know beforehand whether they will be suitable or not, while the huge range of devices and services available to test one’s sexual health in an easy and efficient manner is likewise useful in determining whether taking the next step towards military enlistment is a viable option. With so many potential recruits out there, hiring only the highest standard allows the military to function at their absolute best. Recruits with a good idea of their own physical health can make the recruitment process more efficient, especially if the military were to provide a greater array of information on candidate’s suitability online when it comes to the health aspects of enlisting for service.
Opening All Doors
Following the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the military is now facing external pressures to open itself up to the very best candidates, regardless of their gender alignment or sexual preference. When it comes to finding the very best in potential recruits, the armed forces, or any defense program could be doing themselves a disservice by limiting themselves to binary preferences. Rather, there have been calls from activist groups for all militaries to open up and allow the recruitment of transgender peoples. While likely to face opposition, the very mention of the chance of transgender people being recruited into more prominent military roles reflects a changing state of modern warfare and a call for a fresh approach to recruitment measures in order to get the very best from our military services.