Army wants to attract Generation Z in Northern Ireland

Army wants to attract Generation Z in Northern Ireland.(Submitted Pic Crown Copyright).
Army wants to attract Generation Z in Northern Ireland.(Submitted Pic Crown Copyright).

In a move to recruit more soldiers, challenge stereotypes, and broaden its appeal to young people and their influencers, the Army has launched a new campaign to attract Generation Z (16-24 year olds).

The sociological make-up of Generation Z, captured in a new survey commissioned by the Army of 2,000 16-24 year olds, suggests they are altruistic, driven, open-minded and long to stand on their own two feet.

The Army is seeking to grab their attention by telling them: ‘Don’t join the Army, don’t become a better you’.

Born into a world where social unrest, economic difficulties, and international terrorism are reaching wider across the globe, members of Generation Z generally fear they face a more uncertain future than their parents and as such will have to work harder in life to achieve their goals.

Despite this uncertainty they are optimistic and ambitious, with almost half (48 per cent) wanting to become better versions of themselves and three in four (83 per cent) feeling confident they will meet their full potential and succeed in life.

The Army has been recruiting against a competitive jobs market and record low unemployment rates, is now hoping to broaden consideration of the force as a career to a wider group of 16-24 year olds, by hooking into Generation Z’s emotional drive and aspirational desire to grow and do something that matters in their lives.

General Chris Tickell, General Officer Commanding, Army Recruiting and Training Division, said: “The Army should be one of the top career choices for 16-24 year olds who want to better themselves, make their family proud, and do something that matters. Too many people in this age bracket may have no idea that the Army is recruiting and those that do may not consider it as a career because of false stereotypes and misperceptions: from thinking there are no roles other than infantry and combat, to believing the Army is not for people like them.

“We want young people to understand the Army is much more than just combat. Currently UK armed forces are deployed in more than 80 countries across the world, conducting a range of activity and the Army has done some really positive work assisting with humanitarian efforts, such as in Sierra Leone combating the Ebola crisis, and UN peacekeeping missions in Cyprus.

“That’s why we have deliberately designed a bold, new recruitment campaign that uses reverse psychology and a thought-provoking approach. It will encourage young people and those who influence them to notice the Army, and start having open conversations with real soldiers and their friends and relatives. They can discuss any reservations they may have about joining head on and take the opportunity to consider how much the Army has to offer them and whether it is the right career for them.”

When questioned about the 200 different job roles on offer in the Army, the majority did not realise these roles were available. The majority are not aware of the significant job opportunities in the Army with roles such as painters, musicians, lawyers, carpenters, chaplins, teachers, HR specialists, personal trainers, vets, metalsmiths or dog handlers.

With increased investment in defensive and offensive cyber capabilities confirmed by the Government, the Army offers young people the opportunity pursue specialist technical roles, from apprenticeships in aeronautical engineering to becoming a geo-technician, the Army’s experts in mapping and risk.

The Army’s new recruitment campaign – A Better You – focuses heavily on existing soldiers’ real experiences and journeys of personal growth in the Army, which have been captured in a new survey among serving soldiers.

The ‘A Better You’ campaign is digitally led and will be supported by radio and out of home advertising, with the aim of reaching the Army’s core recruitment audience of 16 to 24 year olds. It is supported by a new nationwide TV advert, which is intended to also appeal to 16-24 year olds, and their influencers, particularly parents.

All advertising will drive people to a new campaign hub on the Army jobs website and will run until the end of February. Further bursts of the campaign are planned for later in 2016.

For more information about a career as an Army Soldier search Army Jobs.