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Armed Forces: Recruitment

Volume 475: debated on Friday 9 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how his Department plans to monitor the impact of the Armed Forces Benefits Calculator on recruitment. (204354)

The Armed Forces Benefits Calculator (ABC) is a new initiative which builds on the success of the pension calculator to provide service personnel with the means of working out an indicative value for their total remuneration package, incorporating basic pay, specialist pay, individual allowances, pension, and other benefits. As such, it is retention focused: the calculator has been developed to better communicate to service personnel the value of their ‘total reward’ package, and other associated financial remuneration information.

The MOD also regards strongly the ABC’s value to recruiting, because it provides those thinking about joining the armed forces with a means of investigating the type of remuneration and benefits available. In future, the single services will be able to understand its impact, and the role it plays in determining why an individual wishes to enlist, from initial interviews. The calculator uses a combination of existing pay rates and allowances (details of which can be found at http://www.mod-abc.co.uk), and some new values, which have been agreed with subject matter experts and the single services. These new values are included to provide a broad indication of what some of the other benefits that personnel receive in return for military service (such as dental care, and health and fitness facilities) might cost to replicate in civilian life.