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Careers and roles

Maybe you already have an idea of the job you’d like to do? Maybe you want to see what careers are on offer?

There are over 200 different roles in the Army. Each comes with its own challenges and rewards. You can use Role Finder to help  you find your perfect job.

Explore Army roles

What can I do?

 There are lots of different options when you're starting to think about joining the Army - and it can be quite confusing. With a little help you can find the right way in for you - which will fit in with you and your circumstances at the moment.

Remember, our team are always around to chat. Drop in to your nearest Army Careers Centre or call us on 0345 600 8080.

Chat to us

0345 600 8080

Female soldier

How old are you?

When it comes to applying to join the Army, how old you are makes a difference to what you can apply for, and where you go once you've joined. Once you've decided on a role (eg Chef) you'll need to check the exact age requirements on Role Finder.

Between 18 - 33:

Most Regular Army soldier roles are available

Between 18 - 30:

Most Regular Army officer roles are available

Between 18 - 50:

Most Army Reserve soldier and officer roles are available

Between 16 -18:

  • Junior soldiers train at the Army Foundation College, Harrogate before becoming Regular Army soldiers when they're older.
  • Study for A Levels at Welbeck Defence Sixth Form College, before heading to university, and then eventually joining the Army as an officer in an engineering trade.
  • Apply for a 6th Form Scholarship - 100 are awarded every year to students who have a great officer potential.

Army roles

Soldier aiming on exercise

Join as a soldier

You could find yourself building bridges or even repairing tanks. There’s a wide range of trades and you’ll be fully trained, so you can operate confidently and effectively.

Officer face

Join as an officer

Challenge. Training. Responsibility. Adventure. Become a British Army Officer and nothing is out of your range. Start building your career as an Officer Cadet and we will give you all the scope and support you need to go on and do much more besides.

Whether it’s commanding a platoon of soldiers on operations, leading a humanitarian mission or helping to build critical infrastructure and rebuild lives after a natural disaster, you will lead a life that is full of purpose.

Join as a reservist

Join as a Reservist

Want to see what it’s like to work in a challenging new environment? Perhaps you want to train for a new career? Either way, the Army Reserve gives you the chance to develop your personal and professional skills in your spare time.

If you're between 16 and 17 years 7 months and hoping to join as a Junior Soldier, you'll spend the first part of your Army life at the Army Foundation College, Harrogate.

If you're thinking of becoming an Army officer in one of the technical trades, but are still at school at the moment, you could study for you A levels at Welbeck with an Army-sponsored place.

Most wanted

If you've decided that you want to join the Army, but you're not sure which of the 200+ roles you want to go for, here are a handful of the positions that we're looking to fill right now.

Why join?

Pay & pensions

We believe in looking after our people. During their career, and after they leave.

From the moment you join, you’ll get a decent salary. Your pay will increase as you gain experience and promotion. You’ll also receive an extra daily allowance when you’re on operations. With subsidised accommodation, food and travel, it all helps your money go further.


0345 600 8080

Regular soldier pay

Regular soldiers are paid as soon as they start their Phase 1 training. They earn at least £18,488 a year when they finish training and move on to their unit. How much you get will depend on which Army job you do. Some specialist roles receive extra pay. Your salary will increase annually as your career continues, regardless of promotion and extra responsibilities. Within five years you could reach the rank of Corporal which starts at £29,768.

Regular officer pay

You’ll earn a salary of £25,984 while you train. This rises to £31,232 when you are commissioned as a Second Lieutenant. If you’re still serving in the Army after five years you could be earning at least £40,025 as a Captain.

Army Reserve pay

If you serve in your spare time as an Army Reserve soldier or officer, you’ll earn the same rate of pay as your colleagues in the Regular Army. It’s a great way to put some extra cash in your wallet. Your pay covers time spent training and travelling to your unit, meals when on duty and a uniform. You also get a tax-free bonus if you train for a certain number of days each year. The more training you do, the more you get.


If you're a former Regular or Reservist then you might be able to rejoin, either in your old role or a new one. And if you're returning to a specialist trade you could get an extra payment.

Ex-Regulars who decide to join the Army Reserve can also get a bigger bounty when they meet the minimum annual training commitment. Check out our guide to rejoining the Army to find out more.

Pensions for officers and soldiers

Every month, the Army pays into a pension fund on your behalf. And when you retire, you will receive a monthly payment based on your final salary.

  • When you join the Armed Forces (either as a Regular or Reservist), you will automatically be enrolled into the scheme - and you won't be asked to pay a penny
  • After two years of Regular service you'll have earned an Army pension that will be paid when you get to the age of 65
  • Anybody aged over 40 who has served for at least 18 years gets the right to claim an immediate pension linked to their final salary, a tax-free lump sum on leaving the Army and a second lump sum when they turn 65
Learning in the classroom

Qualifications for life

About 7,300 soldiers a year do an apprenticeship, earning qualifications (NVQs) while they work. We help soldiers study for GCSEs, degrees and post-graduate awards in a range of subjects, like medicine, languages or law. All of these are subsidised by the Army.

A Learning & Development officer can help you to choose a course, which doesn’t have to relate directly to your job. And we encourage you to keep learning throughout your career.

FAQs - Careers and roles

Can I join the SAS?

For the Regular Army you will need to be a serving soldier first. The Army Reserve do recruit directly into the SAS. All volunteers will need to pass the selection course. Any serving soldier or officer can volunteer to do selection to join the SAS.

How do I become a sniper?

Only serving Infantry soldiers, or members of Royal Armoured Corps Regiments can be selected to apply for sniper training. Both Regular and Reserve soldiers can become snipers, and it is not a role that Officers can apply for. If you want be a sniper, you'll need to become a soldier first, and after that you may be able to apply from within the Army.

What if I decide to leave the Army?

We offer a supportive resettlement package to make the change as easy as possible.
What help will I receive should I decide to leave the Army?
 It includes a payment towards the cost of setting up your new life. As well as help with training courses to find the right job. You’ll be given time off for interviews, and weeks off at the end of your service to make the move.
  What if I want to go back into education?
Should you decide you want to return to full-time education, you can use Enhanced Learning Credits to pay for up to 80 per cent of your course fees.

Contact us

Call us on 0345 600 8080

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