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Application process

To start with you must submit an RFA application form. Then you must pass several tests and interviews.

These include:

  • RFA selection and interview
  • MCA ENG1 Medical examination
  • Security and Reference Check

For the full list of medical criteria, download our Eligibility and Guidance Notes (PDF).

 

Your medical must:

be completed by one of our Ministry of Defence approved doctors who are based all around the country.

Can my GP complete my medical

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Tests and interviews you must pass

Selection & interview

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Once your application has been submitted to the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, they will conduct an initial sift of the information on your CV and you may then be invited for an interview.  The interview process will take the form of any other job interview and is conducted by an RFA officer.  This is your chance to shine and say exactly why you are suitable and what you can offer the RFA.  You will also be able to ask any further questions you may have regarding life in the RFA.

Admiralty Interview Board

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The Royal Fleet Auxiliary Admiralty Interview Board (AIB) takes place over two days at HMS Sultan in Gosport, Hampshire and will test you both mentally and physically.

Before you arrive for the AIB you will receive a biographical questionnaire. It’s important that you complete it as fully and as accurately as you can and hand it in when you arrive at HMS Sultan.

AIB day one


During your first full day, you’ll need to do the following: 

  • A 20-minute verbal test designed to demonstrate your general reasoning and ability with words
  • A 13-minute non-verbal reasoning test, again measuring your reasoning power, but this time without the emphasis on verbal skills
  • A 25-minute numerical test covering numerical fluency, reasoning and statistics
  • A 15-minute speed and accuracy test, measuring your concentration and mental agility
  • A 15-minute spatial orientation test, involving directions, relative positions and movement
  • A short general service knowledge test to provide the Board with an indication of your research into the Royal Navy

Essay

You will also need to choose one of four topics and write an essay within 45 minutes. This will help us assess your written communication skills.

Fitness assessment

To test your fitness you will need to do a multi-stage fitness test (commonly known as the ‘bleep test’). There is no pass or fail with this but your performance will be graded so you need to give it your all. We will send you some preparation guidelines before you come but it’s a good idea to start doing regular exercise as early as possible.

AIB day two

The second day of the AIB includes a practical leadership task, a planning exercise and a competency interview. You’ll find out if you have passed by the end of the day. If you’re successful you will have to stay on and undergo a medical examination.

Practical leadership task

Working within a team in the gym, you will have to solve a practical problem, put a plan into action and respond to difficulties as they come up. The task is designed to test your teamwork and leadership ability, your verbal powers of communication, your resilience and strength of character.

Planning exercise

You’ll get a written brief containing the details of a fictional scenario. You will have 15 minutes to study the information. We’ll then introduce a problem into the scenario setting, and you’ll have 15 minutes to discuss possible solutions with your group and reach an agreed plan. You will then present this to the Board as a group. We will question each person in your group to examine everyone’s grasp of the situation, before you individually present your final solution to the problem.

Competency interview

This involves a 30-minute interview about things you have done throughout your life. To prepare for this you should think about times when you have been a leader, organised something, been in a team and shown courage.

We will ask you why you want to join the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, your understanding of your chosen specialisation and your hopes and ambitions. You will also need to demonstrate a wider knowledge about the Royal Fleet Auxiliary beyond what is available in leaflets.

AIB results

You will know whether you have passed that same afternoon. If you’ve made it through you will need to stay on a little longer to undergo a medical examination.

Be aware, that passing the AIB doesn’t guarantee your entry into training. Everyone is placed in order of merit. The final selection will depend on the number of vacancies available at the time and the number of successful candidates who reach the required medical and educational standards.  Whether you pass or not, most people enjoy their visit to the AIB and go away having learned something about themselves in the process.

Download AIB Details (PDF)

Medical & eye tests

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To become an RFA Logistic Supply Officer, you’ll first have to pass an MCA ENG1 medical exam and eye test to show you’re fit and healthy. This medical is valid for any crew member whose normal place of work is on board a vessel which goes to sea although it is slightly more stringent than the usual legal requirement.

You will need to have this medical done by one of our Ministry of Defence-approved doctors but don’t worry, they’re based all around the country so there should be one near you. You can find out exactly what we’re looking for by searching MCA ENG1 requirements online.

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