Quality of Life—Quality of Service initiatives

News Article / June 10, 2019

From the Royal Canadian Air Force

Fact Sheet

In June 2019, programs were launched to ensure the continuing health of the Royal Canadian Air Force and our ability to achieve mission success. These initiatives are vital in the face of an unprecedented level of global competition for the skills of pilots, technicians, highly trained aviation specialists, and support personnel. Across the RCAF, we are working on restoring and retaining levels of personnel experience and thereby ensure we are able to meet our current mandate and properly transfer skills and knowledge to the next generations of aviators. On one front, we will focus specifically on stabilizing and increasing levels of pilot experience. On a second front we will focus on the quality of life and quality of service of all our personnel and their families and address, in particular, the intake, training, absorption and employment of our members.

The RCAF will stabilize and grow our capacity across all capabilities to ensure continuation of effective delivery of air and space power now, and into the future. This will be achieved by implementing the initiatives outlined below. Some will be implemented quickly but others may take up to five to seven years to put in place.

  • Empower leaders down to the unit level to improve work-life balance.
  • Finalize implementation of the Air Operations Support Technician trade that will concentrate on providing functional maintenance, Force Protection, and Search and Rescue support so highly qualified personnel focus on their primary functions.
  • Complete the implementation of the Family Sponsor Program by the 2019 annual posting season.
  • Make first aircrew tour a minimum four years at tactical squadrons, beginning with pilot flying tours.
  • Review pilot occupation to reflect the current operating environment and job realities.
  • Implement four-year extensions to engagement periods for pilots enrolled under the Continuing Education Officer Training Plan as a matter of course, rather than one-year extensions, when pilots have not completed their degrees.
  • Contract additional instructors for basic aircrew and operational training unit production, while also exploring creating Public Service instructor positions.
  • Review current restricted release policy for air occupations, beginning with pilots, to determine the appropriate period of service.
  • Seek allied and industry partnerships to retain, attract, and grow pilot experience within the RCAF.
  • Provide greater flexibility for Reserve Force employment.

  • Review and adjust the balance between training and professional development with other professional and personal demands on RCAF members.
  • Optimize the path to being operationally effective in air occupations to maximize productive time in the training system.
  • Implement the new Air Operations Officer occupation that will concentrate on non-flying activities to reduce the number of aircrew filling non-flying positions.
  • Streamline and prioritize re-enrolment of skilled air occupations (former RCAF or allied).
  • Enable greater access to Class C full-time service for Reserve Force members employed on domestic operations.
  • Explore additional options with allies to increase training and absorption capacity for RCAF pilots and other air occupations.
  • Expand and/or create additional rotary wing and multi-engine flying capacity to season new wing grads awaiting platform-specific training.
  • Conduct an organizational review and adjustment of pilot positions to rebalance and maximize employment.
  • Explore options for deferred degree programs for pilots.
  • Explore short-term compensation measures for experienced Regular and Reserve Force pilots.
  • Adapt the training system to better recognize existing skills and qualifications for RCAF-managed occupations to create more flexibility in achieving operational effectiveness.
  • Develop eligibility criteria for reimbursement of civilian flying for pilots in non-flying positions.
  • In coordination with Military Personnel Command, explore a modern compensation and benefit model based on skill sets vice only rank progression across RCAF occupations.
  • Propose compensation measures for skilled pilot applicants who re-enroll, including move benefits for former RCAF pilots who are located outside Canada, and allied pilots who are Wings-qualified and only require recertification training.
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