Royal Navy rating

Alternative titles for this job include Seaman, seawoman, sailor

Royal Navy ratings work in a variety of job roles on board ships or submarines at sea, or onshore at a naval base.

Average salary (a year)

£14,931 Starter

to

£36,081 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

Variable variable

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays away from home

How to become a Royal Navy rating

You can get into this job through:

  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly

Apprenticeship

You could apply to join the army through an HM forces serviceperson intermediate apprenticeship.

You'll need to apply directly to the army to discuss which is the best apprenticeship route for you. This will depend on your qualifications and which service role you're interested in.

Entry requirements

  • entry requirements vary

More information

Volunteering and experience

You can join the Royal Navy Reserve to get some experience of what life is like in the service, and to learn new skills at the same time. You'll need to be:

  • between the ages of 16 and 42
  • able to commit to basic training, including a 2-week course at HMS Raleigh in Cornwall

If you're between 12 and 18 years old, you can join the Sea Cadets.

Direct application

You can apply directly to join the Royal Navy as a rating. You don't need any specific qualifications, but you will need to meet the Navy's eligibility requirements. For example, you must:

  • be aged between 16 and 36
  • pass fitness and medical tests

After applying, you'll be invited to talk to someone at your local armed forces careers office about what you want to do. You'll then attend an interview and assessment.

If you have the right skills, you'll be invited to attend the 4-day Pre-Royal Navy Course. This includes further interviews, fitness, medical and aptitude tests. If you're successful, you'll be offered a place on the navy's basic training programme.

More information

Further information

You'll find more details about being a rating from the Royal Navy.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • physical fitness and endurance
  • the ability to work well with others in a team
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • concentration skills for practical tasks
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • thinking and reasoning skills for making quick decisions
  • Being able to use a computer terminal or hand-held device may be beneficial for this job.

Restrictions and requirements

You'll need to:

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Depending on your role, you’ll support a part of the service, like:

  • warfare - operating and maintaining ship’s weapons, electronic and communications systems
  • engineering - operating, maintaining and refitting ships, submarines and aircraft
  • logistics - coordinating office, accounting, stores and catering systems
  • medical - providing a healthcare service for Royal Navy personnel and their families
  • aviation - making sure aircraft are prepared for action, and giving navigation information based on weather and ocean conditions
  • submarine service - operating and maintaining submarine weapons, electronic systems and sensors

Working environment

You could work in a warzone, on a ship or at a military base.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding and outdoors in all weathers.

You may need to wear a uniform and protective clothing.

Career path and progression

After you complete your basic training, you can choose to specialise in a particular area. Examples include:

  • communications
  • logistics
  • mine warfare
  • submarine operations

With training and experience you could move up through the ranks and become an officer.

You can go into a wide range of careers after leaving the navy. The Career Transition Partnership, Quest and Troops to Teachers have more information on careers outside the armed forces.

Training opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Royal Navy rating right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Extended Diploma in Public Services (QCF) (Ambulance, Police, Fire, Prison, Customs, Armed Forces, Public Services)

  • Provider: Barking & Dagenham College
  • Start date: 04 September 2019
  • Location: Romford

Public Services - Diploma In Public Services (Qcf)

  • Provider: HERTFORD REGIONAL COLLEGE
  • Start date: 02 September 2019
  • Location: Turnford

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