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Navy forced to recruit Rear-Admiral on LinkedIn amid staffing crisis | UK | News UK News

The Royal Navy has been forced to advertise for a top-ranking role on social media amid a massive recruitment struggle.

It is currently looking for a Rear-Admiral to look after the United Kingdom’s nuclear deterrent. But with no serving sailor suitable of replacing current director of submarines, Rear-Admiral Simon Asquith, the Navy has turned to LinkedIn.

Defence sources claim Navy bosses hope to attract or a retired officer who commanded submarines during their career. They hope they would then be able to take over the £150,000-a-year role.

The advertisement said candidates must be a member of the reserves or have previously served in the Armed Forces. If chose then would be responsible for “highly classified stealth, elite operations and Trident, our nuclear deterrent”.

The social media advert came to light after it was revealed the Navy was considering decommissioning two warships to help staff its new class of frigates when they are delivered, The Telegraph reports. HMS Westminster and HMS Argyll will be decommissioned so crews can be transferred to Type 26 frigates.

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps has already put forward plans to scale back the use of amphibious assault ships. HMS Albion and HMS Bulwark will remain at a state of “extended readiness”.

It is not unusual for the Navy to use LinkedIn for recruitment. However the Rear-Admiral position is thought to have been the highest rank advertised on social media.

It is the sixth promotion an officer can reach, and two away from being made Admiral, the highest naval rank. Speaking to The Time, a source said: “It’s an initiative we are introducing across all ranks.

“It gives people the flexibility and allows us to take advantage of skills acquired in the civilian sector.”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak last year announced plans to make it easier to “zigzag” between the Armed Forces and Civil Service to retain top staff. It comes as the Armed Forces are experiencing a recruitment crisis, with the Navy hit hardest.

According to MoD figures, the Navy, which has 29,000 full-time recruits, performed the worst out of the Armed Forces for bringing in new personnel. Its intake dropped 22.1% compared to the previous year.

The RAF meanwhile saw a 17% drop and the Army almost 15%. The Government plans to reduce the size of the Armed Forces, but recruitment levels still remain below expected.

A Royal Navy spokesman said: “It would be inappropriate to comment ahead of any appointment being made.”

The Ministry of Defence said it was “committed to ensuring that the Navy has the capabilities it needs to meet current and future operational requirements” when asked about potentially decommissioned ships.

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This notice was published: 2024-01-06 00:35:00

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