Dear students, all of you have aspirations and dreams, of what your education will finally yield. If you are looking for a fat pay packet, a corporate job is the answer. But above and beyond this should be the question of what the job offer in totality. Let us see what attributes go into making an excellent career. 1. The attributes that one expects from a satisfying profession are:-
(a) Professional Advancement
(b) Job Satisfaction
(c) Job Security
(d) Economic Stability
(e) Social Status
(f) Quality of Life
(g) Variety and Adventure
2. If these are what you too are looking forward to, then Defence Services is the profession for you, as these in the Defence Services, compare far more than favourably with any other service.
3. All of us are aware that, professions are competitive, in so far as promotions are concerned. Defence Services is no different. However, as said earlier the competition in the Defence Services is clean and devoid of any other factor but competence.
4. PROFESSIONAL ADVANCEMENT
The promotional avenues available to a Defence Officer are in two ways:-
(a) By Time Scale
(b) By Selection
5. JOB SATISFACTION
Lack of job satisfaction leads to tremendous frustration and results in job-hopping. Jobs in the civil world whether with the government or the corporate leave one with no alternate avenues if stuck with a frustrating portfolio or set up. On the contrary, the sheer variety, sense of purpose, responsibility and pride, negate any job dissatisfaction in the Defence Services.
6. JOB SECURITY
For an effective career, a long-term strategy is essential and this is possible only if continuity and job security is assured. The Defence Services has been structured to ensure that its personnel work with unhindered dignity. Additionally, statutory rules and regulations exist to safeguard the interests of the servicemen adequately both while in service and after retirement.
The service also offers opportunity for courses and postings abroad. The India Defence Officer is renowned all over the world and interaction with foreign armies is extensive. Service with UN Forces provides exposure and travel opportunities across the globe.
8. ECONOMIC STABILITY
Consequent to the Sixth Pay Commission salaries have shot up. While the pay and the allowances of an Army officer may superficially appear to be at par with other Central government services, and may be less than that offered by the corporate sector, the quality of life and non-inflationary nature of the perks, which the Defence Services offers outshine the other services. Government job entitles you to many hidden perks, which you may NOT quantify while calculating remuneration. Apparently, there are about 61 types of facilities, benefits and allowances that are applicable to Defence Services in general. In fact if one were to work out the remuneration of a service officer vis-a-vis a comparable job in the private sector, on the basis of ‘cost to company’ you would be astounded to find the returns of a Defence Officer to be more if not the same. Some of these perks which are not quantified in terms of cash and are immune to inflation are as follows in case of a Lieutenant, which is the starting rank.
- PENSION AT 50% OF LAST PAY DRAWN
- DEATH CUM RETIREMENT GRATUITY
- FREE MEDICAL TREATMENT INCLUDING DEPENDANTS
- CANTEEN FACILITIES AS BEFORE
- INSURANCE COVER
- RESETTLEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
10. QUALITY OF LIFE
As an Indian Defence Services officer at 21, you’d be looking at a lifestyle that one cannot imagine in any other profession, so early in life. What compromises “Quality of Life”? On one hand is a job with a thick pay packet but with the drudgery of 9AM to 9PM schedule, no avenues and time for extracurricular activities, no scope for adventure and excitement, no social status, lack of family life, threat of being terminated with a month’s salary, working in suffocating environment with no self-respect and honour. On the other hand is a job which offers you challenge, adventure, excitement, honour, prestige, self-respect, whole some family life, safety and security for the family and to top it all the love, respect and esteem of our great India. In the somewhat chaotic social and economic conditions that prevail in our country, Army life is an island of sanity and social order that is the envy of our countrymen. Quality of life is an important attribute of Defence life, and has no parallel in any other service. Some of the intangibles, which go to make the quality of life in the Defence Services, are:-
- Service of the motherland.
- A profession to be proud of
- Opportunity to travel and know the country and its people/culture/flora and fauna
- Opportunity to serve and represent the nation abroad
- A pure and noble profession
- Honour and social status
- No stagnation, a new challenge every day.
- Opportunity for growth
- Sports and adventure activity
- Messes, clubs and institutions facilities
- Education facilities – Both school and professional colleges for children
- Quality of life ensured not only for officers, but also families.
Variety and adventure are the spice and romance of life. No profession has the kind of recreational and adventure facilities to offer as the Defence Services does; from membership of the best clubs in country to horse riding, swimming, golfing, mountaineering, trekking and sailing. Posting to exotic stations gives one an opportunity to see India and its different cultures, in all its vivid glory. You may also get a chance to go abroad on course or on posting. So, if one is looking for a profession, which goes beyond being a mere job, accept the challenge and join the Indian Defence Services.
12. PROFESSIONAL ENHANCEMENT
The Defence Services affords a very open, impartial and transparent avenue for professional enhancement. For a professionally dedicated officer with sincerity and dedication, the sky is the limit. Salient aspects of professional enhancement are as follows:-
- Opportunity for higher study in prestigious institutions both in India and abroad
- Deputation in various scientific institutions in the country including DRDO, DGQA, LRDE, BEL, ITI and host of others
- Foreign assignments in the UNO and Indian embassies/missions
- Foreign assignments in connection with the procurement of advanced technology and weaponry and training to handle and maintain the same
- Promotions solely based on capability and free of any extraneous consideration
All of us have our own opinion about what constitutes “social status”. However it is an undisputed fact that the status of a ‘warrior’ has stood the test of time. History and society have both held the soldier in esteem and offered him a unique status in society. By joining the Defence Services, one becomes a member of an exclusive and elite brotherhood, which is the envy of one and all.
14. POST RETIREMENT
Even after laying down the uniform, Defence Services officers continue to have the status of the most respected citizens of our country. This added to their ingrained code of conduct and ethical values enable them to occupy a special social niche in society. Since he is much fitter due to the active lifestyle he has led, a second career or lateral absorption in parallel employment is always eminently feasible. His do or die attitude and mental agility ensures that he never really grows into old age, but continues to contribute and thus remain a valued member of society.
Here it would be apt to reiterate – That all professions serve our motherland – but none of them is in the same league as the Indian Army – for this is the only profession which affords you the opportunity to live up to these stirring lines.
“TO EVERY MAN UPON THIS EARTH,
DEATH COMES SOONER OR LATER.
AND HOW CAN A MAN DIE BETTER
FACING FEARFUL ODDS
FOR THE ASHES OF HIS FATHER
AND THE TEMPLE OF HIS GODS”
A CAREER IN THE ARMED FORCES
Think about it. It’s a challenge that will change you forever. And that’s a soldier’s word.