The military recruiter may very well work the longest hours and get the lowest reward of any specialty in the military. They work anywhere from 8-12 hours each day, and even have to work weekends doing administrative work or meeting with prospective recruits. The whole process of one’s military career begins in the recruiting office. The military recruiter is responsible for finding candidates and selling them on enlisting in their particular branch of service. But once that decision is made, the job of the recruiter has just begun. The recruiter must then complete all the necessary research on each candidate and make sure they will be an asset to the military. Once that is complete, they have to get each candidate to pass the ASVAB test, the physical fitness requirements, and the height and weight requirements.
The biggest hurdle for recruiters today is candidate drug-use and criminal backgrounds. Marijuana abuse is rampant among candidates trying to enlist. It has gotten to the point that the military has begun accepting candidates with a history of using marijuana. There was a time that drug-use qualified you for immediate rejection from the military. As standards are lightened, there is an increase in individuals that fail a drug test within their first four years of service. This result is an embarrassment to the individual, their unit, and the military as a whole. The military needs to maintain the same standards as other government organizations and reinforce their zero-tolerance policy in regard to drug-use.
Relaxed Physical Fitness Standards
Another issue is the relaxed physical fitness standards. Today’s youth are fatter than ever, making about 75% of them ineligible for military service. However, the military continues to relax the standards by giving waivers to those who do not qualify. This becomes an issue in boot camp, as well as after the individual graduates from boot camp: they still do not meet the minimum standards.
Another relaxed standard is the military’s tattoo policy. It used to be that anything visible was a disqualification. However, with the rising popularity of tattoos, the military has relaxed its standards yet again. My question is: when do we stop and say enough is enough? The military will always be judged by everyone and should be held to a higher standard. We must take back control and give recruiters the opportunity to really recruit the best prospects because the most important asset to the military is its people!
Finding A Recruit
A common misconception is that finding a recruit is as simple as visiting a high school or college. But some high schools have begun refusing to allow military recruiters to visit with students, due to the embarrassing cases of dishonest recruiting tactics and sexual harassment. This is beyond sad and sickening for the military. High school recruits work well because not every kid or their parents can afford to pay for college. The military offers a great career opportunity as well as an opportunity to have their education paid for.
What Does It Take to Be a Recruiter?
It is simple: recruiters have to be the best of the best, and held to an even higher standard than other military members. The military relies on its recruiters to not only recruit viable candidates, but to represent their branch and the military as whole. The best way to find and become a great recruiter is to have an impeccable reputation in your prospective communities, and to develop relationships with community leaders, teachers, principals, coaches, parents, and more. Military recruiters should act the same as a college recruiter. They will always be the eyes and ears of their branch and the military, because they are where it all begins!