Rank Progression – British Army
When you start your Army training, you’ll be a Recruit. Once you’ve finished your Phase 1 training, you’ll start your Army career as a Private. Your title may be different depending on which Corps you join – you might be a Trooper, Gunner, Sapper, Guardsman, Fusilier, Rifleman or even Kingsman.
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Promotion to Lance Corporal may follow after you’ve finished your Phase 2 training or after about 3 years as a Private. Lance Corporals supervise small teams of up to 4 soldiers. You’ll also have the chance to specialise and go on specialist military training.
A Staff Sergeant is sometimes known as a Colour Sergeant, and is a senior role where you’ll rely on both your resource and man management skills. You may command a troop or platoon as well as being responsible for up to 120 soldiers.
WARRANT OFFICER CLASS
Also known as a Company or Squadron Sergeant Major, when you reach this role, it will be your job to focus on the training, welfare and discipline of a company, squadron or battery of up to 120 men. You’ll be the senior adviser to the Major in charge of your subunit. You might also be chosen to commission as an officer.
After 6-8 years, and depending on your leadership ability, you’ll be promoted to Corporal. You’ll have the chance to gain more trade and instructor qualifications. You’ll command more soldiers than you did as a Lance Corporal and may be in control of equipment like tanks and guns.
Once you’ve served for around 12 years, you may be promoted to the rank of Sergeant. This is a senior role, and usually involves being second of command of a platoon or troop of up to 35 soldiers. You’ll also be working closely with junior officers.
WARRANT OFFICER CLASS
Or Regimental Sergeant Major. This is the most senior soldier rank in the Army, and you’ll need to have served for about 18 years, with an outstanding service record. The role involves the leadership, discipline and welfare responsibilities of up to 650 people.
Having different types of ranks is a good idea because then you can identify who is in charge and who has more power.