There are six steps to apply to the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) for both the Regular and Reserve Force:
1. Online application
The first step is to fill out our online application. This is your chance to tell us all about you! The application will ask you a series of questions about your educational background, activities and interest, and any work or military experience you may already have. Follow along with the instructions written in the application. If your application is selected, you will move on to the next stage of the process.
2. Aptitude test
Once we have processed your online application, a recruiter will contact you to schedule your aptitude test. The test will help us identify your strength areas in order for us to determine the type of job that’s best for you. We will give you 45 minutes to answer 60 questions. In that time, you will be tested on your verbal, spatial and problem-solving skills.
Preparing for the test
We recommend that you prepare using this practice test (PDF, 335 KB). It will give you an idea of the types of questions you will encounter on the real test. You may also want to review mathematical problems like fractions, decimals and long division. For more ways to prepare, speak with one of our recruiters.
3. Medical exam and fitness test
We use the medical exam and fitness test to make sure that you are physically ready for military training and service.
The first part of the medical exam is a questionnaire on your medical history. You should be prepared to answer questions about past and current illnesses and medications, among other things.
The second part is the physical exam, performed by licensed medical staff. They will measure your height and weight, and then evaluate your vision, colour perception and hearing. Before scheduling your physical exam, your recruiter will provide you with a list of ways to prepare for your appointment.
Medical file review
After the medical exam, our medical staff will review your medical records and history. This review helps to determine if there are any medical limitations that will affect your training and career.
All members of the CAF must successfully complete an annual physical fitness test, regardless of occupation. If you are applying to the Regular Force, your first fitness test will take place during the first week of basic training. If you are applying to the Primary Reserve Force, your first fitness test will take place before enrolment. Both tests are administered by a trained, professional evaluator.
Once the results from the previous two stages have been finalized, you will be invited to your official job interview with a military career counsellor.
Preparing for the interview
The application process is very competitive, especially for certain jobs. It is important that you prepare for your interview in order to be hired for the job you want.
To prepare for the interview, we suggest that you:
- research the jobs you have listed on your application
- list the reasons you chose those jobs
- review your resume and be prepared to talk about your work history
- summarize your education and any other activities you have been involved in
You may also want to prepare answers to the following questions:
- Where does basic training take place? For how long?
- Where does the occupational training take place for the jobs you are interested in?
- How long will you be in training before you are completely qualified?
- What is the role of your preferred job in the CAF?
- Where might you serve?
- What do you like about the jobs you listed on the application?
- What are the negative elements of the jobs you listed on the application?
5. Reliability screening
The next stage of the application process is your security clearance. All applicants must pass the reliability and security screening in order to move forward to the final stage. Your recruiter will let you know which documents we will need to process this part of your application. Once we receive those documents, we will verify your:
- personal information
- education qualifications
- professional credentials
- criminal record
- credit history
- employment history
If you have made it this far in the application process, congratulations! You have successfully passed each stage, and will soon receive a job offer from the CAF. You will have 10 days to either accept or refuse the offer.
Once you accept the offer, you will receive joining instructions which will include an invitation to your enrolment ceremony.
At the enrolment ceremony you will be officially sworn in as a member of the CAF. The ceremony honours the commitment you have made to Canada and to protecting and serving Canadians. You are welcome to invite family and friends to attend.
Enrolment into the Reserve Force
Once the recruiting centre has finished processing your application for the Reserve Force, the results will be sent back to your local Reserve unit. The unit may offer you a job depending on what is available.
If you accept the job offer, you will be given an enrolment date and start date for basic training. At the enrolment ceremony you will be officially sworn in as a new member of your Reserve unit. You are welcome to invite your family and friends to attend.
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