Royal Air Force
Happiness score is 73 out of 100
4.2 out of 5 stars.
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Royal Air Force Employee Reviews

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Location
United Kingdom696 reviews

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3.7Work-life balance

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Great times

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Definitely worth the 22 years!It has changed so much but its still a great way of life. You will need to move to different locations every 5 years, around the UK. You will go to some fantastic locations around the world
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Not bad

The Air Force is not such a bad organisation. I guess the pay could be better but there's rare promotion opportunities. Plenty of different roles to choose from.
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Insights into Royal Air Force

Based on 74 survey responses
What people like
  • Feeling of personal appreciation
  • Supportive environment
  • Clear sense of purpose

You get out what you put in

There are lots of training oppertunities and oppertunities for advancement. But the social life doesn’t exist anymore. You will get some of the best training in the world.

Pros

Job security

Cons

Away from family
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Part of a large organised family

I served 22yrs in the RAF, best years of my life, great skills learned, great friends made. Travelled to places and learnt about new cultures and ways of life. Great team and leadership skills gained. Would recommend this way of life for any young person. It is life changing for the better.

Pros

Teamwork and camaraderie

Cons

Sometimes the detachments can be quick on turn around
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Great

Was a very good career and I got a lot out of it, only left due to needing to be at home more. If I could go back I would. Got all my licences and great life experiences
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The Royal Air Force is not a job, but a way of life!

If you can fit the criteria for todays modern Armed forces, then you’ll not go far wrong in Her majesty’s Royal Air Force. Whatever your desire, you’ll find it here. Starting with the basics, discipline is foremost, but once you’ve graduated the world is your oyster.
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Exciting

managementworkplace culture career prospectsengagement passionate managers Excellent place to work. Great team bonds, travel opportunities and development
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30 years service

good employer, plenty of opportunities for advancement, aid in further learning, also help pay costs. accomodation is good and food is varied and worth the cost, look after their own, good range of postings
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No discipline or fitness standards

What a waste of my life this experience was, was embarrassed to state my employer and job. No pride in job, no feeling of any value in the job. Found people thinking there were above other people even though the least senior force.
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Best years of your life

Well it was many years ago but still as rewarding today, the friends you make the places you go, the respect you have for others, the future is yours.

Pros

The life and friendship you make with others.

Cons

None
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Possibly the best job ever

Hard work, with the opportunity to travel. The people you meet will remain life long friends. Applying for the trade that suits you is key to enjoying your day. But be aware that pay grades do differ quite significantly. eg technical trades tend to be better paid.

Pros

Cheap food and accommodation. Travel. Sport

Cons

Long hours at times
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Great comradeship, superb training with all equipment provided and life long friendships

The RAF was a great place to work, when i joined. It had a superb well defined managerial structure within the MOD but over the years constant government cutbacks have made significant changes to the high level management command structure. (with the heads of the three services each taking an equal term in overall command. Each favouring/ prioritising spending on their Arm of the Services) This had a demoralising effect as manpower and equipment reductions combined with increased workload have led to stress for many RAF personnel and significant failure of ageing equipments as they were pushed to the limit. Now looking at the Services from the outside things appear to be going full circle with modern equipment provision and training. However manning and equipment levels are still quite low. Currently there are not enough RAF personnel 33,200 to fill a moderately sized Premiere League football stadium. Today our total armed services are 198,000 strong. Given that we are potentially facing another conflict in Ukraine against a 100000 strong, superbly equipped division of the Russian Army plus their Air Force and Navy, I have reservations about recommending a career in the Services. My son is currently serving but has become disillusioned because of current re equipments which are so technically complex and sadly unreliable, they are more of a liability than an asset.

Pros

Job security, Reasonably good pay, Excellent equal opportunity employer, Tools and uniform provided, Accommodation provided at reasonable cost, Good medical support (including dental)free, Decent annual leave, Access to Sports facilities on unit.

Cons

Manning levels, Equipment levels (age and reliability), Operational Tempo (Historically we have been stretched to the limit), Government commitment to defence spending.
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High staff turn over with poor retention.

Staff cuts and little going on in the world except for the pandemic has resulted in people been used to fill gaps here there and everywhere and not do the job they joined up for.
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Very rewarding at times

Very good place to work at times, dependant on mamagement. Fast paced at times but also can be slow paced and dull at times too. Benfits are slowly fading so not really an incentives to being in anymore.
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Poor career management not utilising skills built up over years of experience.

Its a different environment to work than being civillian and will provide you many different and sometimes rewarding experiences over your career. But at the end of the day you are just a number to be put in a position as seen fit by under qualified HR drones that cannot fathom how valuable experience on an aircraft type is, no matter how many years of service you give. I suspect this is the case for all other technical trades within the RAF and a big contributor to churn and low morale.

Pros

Benefits, job security

Cons

Low pay for technical trades, absolutely idiotic HR personnel and policies
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Fantastic people to work alongside very driven and great social

Early days it was very good. Got to go away more in the later years but towards the end the working hours were way too much. Late night were really bad depending on who the texts controller was. Excellent equipment cutting edge aircraft, made you proud to work on them. The administration got worse in the later years though.

Pros

Travel twice a year

Cons

Long hours at the end from 2007 -2012
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Everybody should try the armed forces

I did 23 years in the RAF and they were the best years of my life, I will have memories and friends to last a life time. I travelled all over the world and had a great time doing it.

Pros

Camaraderie, travel, salary and pension

Cons

Can be difficult with a young family.
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Excellent company

An excellent opportunity for a career that gives you the opportunity to work alongside an outstanding team, the comradeship is second to none and I enjoyed being part of the team.

Pros

Travel, comradeship

Cons

None
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Best.

Best jobbi ever had. Couldn't recommend anything more. Good friends good training good everything. Being in the military is a special thing without a doubt .

Pros

Everything

Cons

Nothing
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Interesting work, achieved my goals

Enjoyed my time in the airforce Very different experience todayIf you paid the guys the same equivalent pay as a civilian in the same role you wouldn't have any problems with job retention

Pros

Never a dull moment, worked on some interesting aircraft

Cons

Low pay, promotion through the ranks slower than the army and navy
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confident and honest staff

Great place to work with like minded people and good management structureFriendly and well structured and well ledGood working hours and able to work responsibly from home

Pros

Good office, pay, conditions, people

Cons

More variety in posts
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Overall rating

Based on 771 reviews

Ratings by category

3.7 out of 5 stars for Work/Life Balance
4.0 out of 5 stars for Salary/Benefits
4.3 out of 5 stars for Job security/advancement
3.8 out of 5 stars for Management
4.2 out of 5 stars for Culture

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