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Careers Royal Marines

Royal Marines Officer

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It takes a special state of mind to be a Royal Marines officer. Because you will lead your men during vital missions – in all weather, all circumstances and across every terrain.

You’ll need to excel in leadership, planning, tactics and decision making. Because you’ll be responsible for the morale, training, effectiveness and the wellbeing of the men under your command. But with the training you’ll get at Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM) you will develop all the skills you need to be an effective leader.  

As a Royal Marines officer you have a number of specialist jobs available to you. All of these will give you a new set of skills to build on what you’ve already learned.

But whatever your job and rank, first and foremost you’ll be a Royal Marines Commando. A member of one of the world’s most respected fighting forces, who has earned the right to wear the coveted green beret.


Type Level

  • Action: 5
  • Leadership: 5
  • Hands on: 4
  • Technical: 3
  • Admin: 3
  • Teamwork: 4

Eligibility and qualifications

What are we looking for

People with the ability to lead in extraordinary circumstances. Who can think on their feet and enjoy being responsible. People who thrive on challenges and know the value of teamwork – because at the end of the day, lives are at stake.


180 UCAS points (including 2 non-overlapping subject areas).  Each subject must be allocated at least 45 UCAS points.  Five GCSEs (A* to C) or Scottish Standard Grades or equivalent, which must include English Language and Maths.

British or British dual citizenship.  Nationality restrictions may apply for certain specialist jobs.

You must be aged between 17 and 26 years.

Skills and interests

You should like:

  • Leading and Managing People
  • Responsibility and Decision Making
  • Outdoor Activities
  • A Sense of Adventure

You should have these skills:

  • Leadership and Management
  • Good Physical and Mental Stamina
  • Reliable
  • Honesty and Integrity 

Career Progression

Skills for life

We give you all the specialist skills you’ll need to excel at your job. But you can also build on this knowledge throughout your career. And because you will have the chance to gain qualifications that are recognised and valued by both the Royal Navy and civilian employers – like NVQs, GCSEs, BTWC awards or even university degrees – you will develop an enviable set of transferrable skills.

Development as a Royal Marines Officer
University short courses in subjects such as management, politics and international relations are available free of charge. During your training, you can use our library to keep up with current affairs and any other reading you need to do.


Like all careers in the Royal Navy, where and how far you go during your time as an officer is up to you – and depends on your choices and achievements.

To start off with, during your training you will be known as a Young Officer and have the rank of a Second Lieutenant. Once you’ve finished your training you’ll be commissioned as a Lieutenant. Prove yourself and you could move up to become a Major General – the highest rank possible in the Royal Marines.

Pay and benefits

Joining the Royal Marines means more than just travel being part of one of the most elite fighting forces in the world. It also gives you job security that is hard to come by in civilian life.

You’ll also benefit from free medical care, help with housing and discounts on living costs. And if you’re interested in getting qualifications, we can fund you through your studies.

Pay for each role depends on the job you’ve chosen and on whether you have any previous qualifications, but your starting salary as a Royal Marines officer will be £14,349, rising to £24,971 a year after you’ve finished your initial training at the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines. 

You can also earn extra money when you do certain specialist jobs and as you gain new skills and qualifications.

Case study

"I wouldn't say there was a type of person you need to be, to be a Royal Marines Officer. It's purely about your personal traits that make you suited to that job." Paul, Royal Marines Officer

How to join

Joining process

1. Get in touch by filling out a simple form or calling 08456 00 14 44.
2. Attend an Initial Careers Presentation (ICP) at a careers office near you.
3. If you’re still interested, then fill out a short application form.
4. We'll book you in for the Recruitment Test (RT). Find out more (PDF).
5. We'll then review the results with you and chat through the most suitable route into the Royal Marines.
6.Take the medical tests and the pre-joining fitness test. Take a look at our fitness programme.
7. Potential Officers Course - Over three days at the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM) at Lympstone, you’ll have to pass a range of physical and mental tests in the gym, the classroom and on the assault course. You’ll also have to show your leadership potential and, most importantly, your ability to work as part of a team. Find out more.
8. Once you’ve passed all the tests, we’ll make you a formal job offer.

Find out more about the joining process


Training overview

Your Royal Marine adventure begins with 32 weeks of initial training, which will take place at the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM) in Lympstone. 

You’ll start with the basics, like marching, drills, looking after your kit and generally learning to live, work and think as a Royal Marines Commando. During the early weeks, you’ll also learn to look after and fire weapons, including the assault rifle and machine guns. Later, you’ll work on more advanced combat skills, such as patrolling, setting ambushes, cliff assaults and fighting in built-up areas. 

Trained to command
Royal Marines Officer training is longer and more difficult than Royal Marines Recruit training – 15 months, rather than 32 weeks. That’s because the men under your command need to know you’ll never ask them to do something you can’t do yourself.

You’ll join with a group of fellow Young Officer Recruits, known as a batch. You’ll stay with your batch throughout your time at CTCRM, finishing your training and earning your green beret together. You’ll also develop the advanced tactical skills and leadership qualities you’ll need to motivate, train and inspire Royal Marines Commandos in camp, on exercise and in the field. Like Royal Marines Recruits, you’ll take part in regular exercises, including a three-week deployment to the USA towards the end of the course, to put together everything you’ve learned so far.

Find out more

Your career

As a Royal Marines officer you will have an extremely varied career – normally moving jobs every two years. And gaining experience in many different areas. How you move your career forward very much depends on your interests and ambitions.

After your initial 15 month training at Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM), you’ll become a Royal Marines Officer. You'll have your own passing-out parade, marking the end of your phase-one training, and then you'll embark on the second phase of your training.

This is where you put everything into practice. You’ll be commanding a troop of around 30 men, most of who will already have several years’ service. But don’t let this faze you. You’ll have a very experienced Troop Sergeant as your Second-in-Command.

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Royal Marines Reserve

As a Royal Marines Reservist, you'll be one of about 600 people who combine their civilian day jobs with serving part-time as fully-trained Commandos.

Warfare Officer

As a decisive leader, skilled seaman and navigator, you'll be able to handle your ship safely in all conditions.


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