National Defence

169 reviews

National Defence Employee Reviews

  • Job Work/Life Balance
  • Salary/Benefits
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Challenging and Rewarding
Imagery Technician Public Affairs (Current Employee), Edmonton, AlbertaJanuary 10, 2015
Pros: travel, overseas experience
Cons: never paid for overtime when working 16 hour days for months on end.
There is no career more challenging or rewarding than to serve in the Forces, where Canadians take part in defending their country and participate in world events that will change their lives and the lives of the people they are helping.

The Forces offers outstanding debt-free education, as well as time-management and teamwork skills. The Forces is one of the only militaries in the world that ensures women are able to work in whatever job they choose.

What you learn from leadership (management) mainly is teamwork and have each others back, that no matter who the member (co-workers) is or where you work with or where they are stationed that working as a team is the most important to getting the mission done. The camaraderie and team spirit are considered by many members to be one of the main benefits of life in the military.

The most enjoyable part of the job is the opportunity to travel the world, experience different cultures, meet new people, and use state-of-the-art equipment wherever they work.

Hardest part of the job is saying good bye to your loved ones and not able to tell them when you will be back, the long extensive times away from family, finding last minute childcare, stress of being away from family when they need you.

A typical day is rare in the military as one week it could be 7:30-3:30, then the following could be 5:30 until midnight or 3:00am for 5-30 straight with no time off. There is no consistency as emergencies come up.
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OPs and training Warrant Officer
Field Engineer (Current Employee), Calgary, AlbertaSeptember 21, 2014
•Assist the Officer Commanding (OC) in his command responsibilities so that the squadron (Sqn) achieves the operational and training objectives as tasked by the Commanding Officer (CO) 41 Combat Engineer Regiment.
•Advise and assist in the design, planning, resource and construction of various trg construction venues. This included defenses, observation posts, targets, accommodation buildings and compounds.
•Supervise the improvement of training area roads and combat road construction to include drainage and culverts.
•Coordinate all disciplinary matters concerning the Non Commissioned Members (NCM) of the Sqn. The SSM will prepare disciplinary files and organize Summary Trials at the Sqn level.
•Monitor daily routine of the Sqn to ensure Sqn NCMs are efficiently trained, lead and administered.
•Assist the Regimental Sergeant Major (RSM) in developing the Warrant Officers (WOs) and Senior NCMs by recommending challenging positions consistent with their developmental needs and Sqn requirements. The SSM will conduct professional development training as tasked or required to either the Sqn or the Regiment (Regt). The SSM will keep the SQN OC apprised of all matters concerning NCM development.
•Mentor Sqn WOs and NCOs with emphasis on the Troop WOs.
•Be the Combat Engineering technical expert in the Sqn and have a sound understanding for the detail of engineer task execution, equipment employment and resource requirements at the Sqn level.
•Command the Sqn Echelon as required.
•Apply and ensure the application of the CF Code of Ethics.
•Have a sound knowledge of the Service Support – more... functions of the Regiment.
•Understudy the SSM and be acting SSM during absences.
•Train Field Engineer Troops for deployments and ensure all battle tasks standards have been accomplished to a high level of competency.
•Safety Advisor for the unit. – less
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work experience
Mobile Support Equipment Operator (Current Employee), Trenton, ONJanuary 7, 2015
Pros: driving and getting meal claims and free hotels, also to see different places
Cons: having hearing lost becasue i served over seas to protect and make peace for our country
I am a Canadian soldier and I do my best as to protect and serve my country. I love what I do. I love driving heavy equipment and going on the road with tractor trailer. I learnt how to do DI daily inspections on vehicles and learnt a lot of safety and how to handle equipment. I have had a few bosses and I have not complaint about any they treated me good and I did the same I also did what I was told. I worked with a lot of different people and I learnt things from them and I taught them things so that was a good part in my life. I been in the Canadian Forces since 2004. I did a tasking across Canada in 2010 and my job was to inspect all the air force base runways to see how much rubber built up was on the tar mat and if it needed to be removed and also the conditions of the runway. I went from BC to NL it was a great experience and seen a lot of different places. I did 2 tours in Afghanistan and my second tour was a little rough because I did experience hearing lost of certain tones and require to wear max ear protection around loud noises, I do have hearing aids and wear them when required and that being said I am getting medically released from the military because of this.
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A Challenging and Interesting Place to Work
Director (Current Employee), Ottawa, ONApril 21, 2015
Pros: The people you work with.
Cons: Not having the resources you need to get the job done properly.
The Canadian Forces will challenge you. Most days are different, and life is always interesting. You will work with the best Canadians you will ever meet, who are selfless, hard working and loyal. You can learn a trade, you will have friends for life, and the self respect that comes from doing something that matters. You will get to work with some high tech equipment, and physical fitness is a basic part of the job. There is always something to learn, and the demands will always be upon you. Unfortunately, the Canadian Government starves the CF for resources, and this can and will be frustrating the longer you serve. You will be expected to achieve your mission, but you will often be challenged by a lack of resources and token support by the Government. You will rarely have the best equipment, and rarely will you have enough help. The only thing that will consistently get you through is the quality of the people, which is the strength of the CF. On the surface, the pay and benefits are good, but moving around will reduce your earning power, and you will sometimes lose in Real Estate deals because you don't control the timing or location of your moves. You won't get rich or even wealthy being in the military, but you will live relatively comfortably.
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Stressful environment
Movements Officer (Former Employee), RCSU (Pac) - VictoriaMarch 28, 2013
Pros: great salary
Cons: long hours 14-16 hour days 7 days a week
Due to cutbacks you find there is no balance between work and home life. Everyone is expected to do more with less and unfortunately each member is stressed to the maximum.
I worked with a great team who would stab you in the back at the drop of a hat to make themselves look good or to save their face. I have been with DND for 12 years. In that time I have been bullied, abused, harassed and court martialled and then told I was not qualified to do the job I have been doing for the past 10 years yet, I have all my course reports that say I was doing an incredible job, I was an asset to the office etc.
Best part of the job was working with the Cadets. They are our future and if you could spend a small amount of time with each individual you would find that we are going to be okay. They are bright, intelligent and have incredible ideas about how to save our planet.. They are the reason I stayed in the military as long as I did.
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Good employer
Senior Oracle DBA (Current Employee), OttawaMay 4, 2015
I am presently a full time employee of the Department of National Defence, working on ZLinux systems. I am a senior Oracle DBA with over 12 years experience with Oracle, including a year and a half with Oracle Corporation as an employee.
While presently working with Oracle 11.2.0.2 databases I have had experience with Oracle application servers, Oracle Developer, Dataguard , Oracle B2B, as well as many versions of the Oracle database from 6i and up.
In my present position I run Rman backups of my production database, and I have implemented an Active Dataguard solution. I am also responsible for refreshes of the applications development and training databases, which I developed the Unix scripts for. The rest of the databases in the system, depending on importance get a nightly data pump export, also scripted in Unix.
I am familiar with 11g Oracle Enterprise Manager, DBA Console and Toad, using OEM on a daily bases to check jobs I have scheduled through its interface.
I have installed many different Oracle products and I am familiar with things like Oracle versionitis.
I have held positions as a support DBA for databases and application servers as well as manager of the DND HRMS civilian and member databases
I am interested in an evening and weekend position supporting Oracle databases remotely and not presently looking to leave my current employer.
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Maintaining the Pacific Fleet of Naval Vessels
Licenced Carpenter - Licenced Shipwright (Former Employee), Victoria, BCDecember 17, 2013
Pros: satisfaction of working for the navy and thereby, my country
I have taken courses in naval architecture, lofting, pattern and mold making, rigging, blacksmithing, sail making, planning and estimating, and hull surveying, during my tenure with Defence Department.I have successfully completed the "Canadian Power Squadrons" safe boating course, and the "St. John Ambulance" first aid course. I also possess a valid Canadian passport.

I believe I can achieve standards of excellence with most peers and with most tasks, regarding the design, production and repairs of wooden, concrete, fiberglass and metalwork. I also am literate with computers, and project planning, and liaise between involved contractors.

Letters of commendation twice from the Deputy Minister of Defence, for completely rebuilding a broken mainmast for the H.M.C.S. Oriole only days before her annual "Swifture International Yacht Race", and for the exact construction and successful delivery of the lifeboat (replica) carried by the (now floating museum) H.M.C.S. Sackville, in time to commemorate the Canadian Navy's 75th anniversary.
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Army Life
Combat Engineer (Former Employee), Gagetown, NBAugust 22, 2014
Pros: job stability
Cons: war
A typical day in the Army was wake up at 630 gym for 730 for an hour workout, then get dismissed from gym for your next timing and show up for role call then get morning orders. after orders we would break off into our sections and and carry out our daily routine orders.

Ive learned a lot about team work ,camaraderie, loyalty and professionalism and time management.

As for co workers Ive learned that you only work fast and sufficient if you can be approachable and professional and get along well with others , if not your morale will decrease and work efficiency will lack, people get complacent and miss things and safety becomes a factor. Ive seen it first hand what can happen if there is low morale.

The most enjoyable part of my job was doing what no one else wants to do and doing it good.
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Department of National Defence, Canada
Fleet Manager (Former Employee), SIU, Calgary, AlbertaJune 6, 2014
Pros: friendships
Cons: exctremely long hours on occassion.
Senior officer in charge of the Investigation Section, Security Section and on different occasions the Patrol Section. The experience was exceptional. I was very well received by all personnel of all ranks with the Military Police Community and was often selected to attend a variety of specialized training courses to assist me in my varying roles. A typical day would be to review all reports that would require further or specialized investigation. I would then designate an investigator, ensuring the original report was submitted in the required time frame and all follow up action was within the 30 day allowable time frame. Reviewed and corrected all incoming reports for grammatical errors, etc.. Scheduled training for junior members, wrote annual evaluation reports, and recommended advancement and position changes for personnel deemed deserving of promotion.
The most enjoyable part was the close bonds and friendships as well as the superior training offered by the Department of National Defense.
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Quiet work enviroment
Office Clerk (Former Employee), Ottawa, ONJanuary 2, 2013
Pros: good salary
Cons: contract work
Applying General Office procedures with particular emphasis on the receipt, analysis, classification, processing and retrieval of correspondence.
Perform clerical duties: filing, sorting and distributing mail.
Basic computer skills, windows, OutlookExpress electronic mail.
Operate all kinds of office machines.
Answer, screen and forward telephone calls, take messages.
Schedule, confirm and make new appointments.
Prepare routine correspondence and or preparing standard responses to military personnel and families.
Maintain and prepare reports.
Knowledge of Word, Excel, Power Point and Microsoft office.
Receive and record payments in ledger.
Helped Administrative Assistant make travel arrangements, like booking flights, hotels and transportation in Claims X.
Arrange meetings and conferences for the project.
Distributed all office supplies as well as ordering them.
Greet customers at the office and direct them to the appropriate contact.
Schedule, confirm and make new appointments for customers.
Some Bookkeeping
Prepare contract and forward to potential clients.
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DND has been a great employer
Plumbering Shop Supervisor (Former Employee), Greenwood, NSMay 7, 2014
Pros: working with military supervisor of limited trade knowledge
Cons: great place to work with great co-workers and work activities
A typical day would start with scheduling any immediately required work to employee and tasking the rest of the staff to required duties. Once the staff are tasked I complete the time sheets for the previous day. My morning paper work also includes ordering of materials and the paying of invoices from the mail. I would then review incoming work and provide estimates on cost for both materials and labour for management to further review. In the afternoon I visit work places to ensure all work sites safety regulation are being enforced and that the work is being done in an efficient trade like manner. I am often called to trouble shot problem areas as well as assist inspectors in Defense Construction Canada.
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Productive
Stores Person (Former Employee), Wainwright, ABJanuary 23, 2014
Pros: good benefits
Cons: lots of stress
I served 28 years with the National Defense and had to take an early medical retirement due to stress and anxiety.
The job was great but we do not get recognized for what we do, There are no promotions as civilians are not allowed to be supervisors unless you are a special person. There is a lot of favoritism and for those of us that have been there for years well you have to be in the favorites file. With all the cutbacks it is a higher demand for more work and less help. Civilians have no say so in the work place which is upsetting as we are the ones who are at the workplace at all times. The military put in an average of 25 to 30 hours work as week and we put in 40 hours a week and have to make up for the military while they are on various other duties, It is very hard and stressfull.
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Fast-pace environment with many twists & turns to keep you busy!
Secure Network Supervisor (Current Employee), Trenton, ONOctober 29, 2015
Pros: Lots of hockey
Cons: Writing many memos and evaluation reports
First of all, I have an awesome crew working for me. We are tasked daily to support customers with computer and network needs. My team and I can troubleshoot and solve most issues with minimal impact to users.

Management can be hard to please at times, but we do get along and understand the needs of the department.

The hardest part of the job is dealing with forces beyond our control where our projects are stalled due to bureaucratic red tape or the fact that our deadlines are not realistic.

The best part of the job is having customers forward comments to my managers giving my team credit for the hard work they put in to resolve issues.
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Highly organized,professional,high valued organization.
Mcpl (Former Employee), Edmonton, ABSeptember 20, 2012
Pros: strong work enviorment, of strong willed capable personal with strong leadership.
Cons: months at a time away from home, with little vocal contact.
A typical day begins at six a.m with a five kilometer run,followed by training in weapons,first aid,vehicles(both wheeled and tracked),map use,or any variety of other training.I was taught discipline,organization,motivation and a will to achieve there.The people i worked with i did not consider my co-workers but rather an extension of my family.The most difficult part of this job was being deployed for extended service overseas away fro my wife and children,the most enjoyable being finishing at task as a team,always together.
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Wonderful place to work
Service Desk Officer (Current Employee), Winnipeg, MBJune 14, 2014
Pros: highly supportive work environment, opportunity for training, possibility for advancement when available
Cons: highly stressful
An average day at work, with the Canadian Armed Forces, is highly stressful, but nothing compares to the satisfaction of knowing you've helped protect your country, and those that live in it.
Every day is a learning experience.
Management, on the local level, is the best I've ever had the pleasure of working with. My co-workers are highly trained, with each having their own area of expertise. Combined, we manage to provide support to the highest degree possible.
The hardest part about working for a military establishment, is the loss of friends when they're posted to different wings/bases.
The most enjoyable part of working with the Armed Forces, is meeting new friends, and providing the military with the highest level of support possible.
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Great Experience !
Aerospace Engineer (Current Employee), Halifax, NSDecember 8, 2013
Pros: leadership skills, team spirit, benifits, job security.
Cons: slow enhancement, high risk and heavy danger, below average compensation.
Teamwork and cohesiveness of a culture that promotes team spirit or "esprit de corps" makes for an amazing sense of belonging in any activity performed. The intense need for strong leadership is definitely a significant character in this organization. If your skills are weak in that department, believe me, it will be very well improved in a very short period.
However, the advancement of a technically educated personnel could be noticeably slower than that of many of that in the private/non-governmental sector. To get to the edge of technology, engineering and state-of-the-art equipment, it would better to be on the contracted end.
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Good pay but not a lot to do unless your fighting a war...
Infantry Soldier (Former Employee), Petawawa, ONDecember 1, 2014
Pros: pay, guns, and that's about it.. pride maybe, wait, no...
Cons: far away from anything :( petawawa, on
Typical day was exercise for one hour starting at 8 am, go home shower and back for 10 am parade/inspection in uniform. Sit around all day in the company locker area with nothing to do. It got so bad some days they'd make us pull our clean weapons from the vault and clean them again.... Around 4 pm we'd form up in ranks and find out if we were leaving then or if we had to wait around for nothing a little longer. Glad I left... :)
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met alot of new friends and like the moving around to different provinces
Vehicle Technician (Former Employee), Ottawa, ONMay 6, 2014
Pros: medical and dental benefits and family support.
Cons: sometimes long hrs and getting posted every 3 or so years leaving friends
usually from 7:30am until 4pm unless you were on-call. Get in coveralls and pick up your work orders and start your job. Had gym/sports training 3 or 4 times a week. Learned to be a team player in the job and on sports teams. Never had to much to do with management if I could. Some of the best people in the world to work/play with. Whenever you or someone got posted and you had to leave your friends behind or if someone died. Meeting new friends and keeping in shape. All of the sports and extra activities that were available.
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Very accomodationg and helpful
IS Support (Former Employee), Toronto, ONMay 17, 2013
Pros: some key benefits of working here, exceptional staff
This was my very first full time employment job and I couldn't have been happier witht he results. I was fortunate to work here for two summers as a full time coop student. The staff around me helped in any way they could and was happy to provide thier services. The work environment was very intense at times but very exciting. I personally took care of any technical information system issues that may have arised. This thaught me more than I could have imagined and gave me the opportunity to actually put into affect all my education. Definitely a really great bunch of people that just made the work days that much more enjoyable.
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Marine Engineer
Chief Engineer Royal Canadian Navy (Submarines) (Current Employee), ADM MAT OttawaDecember 12, 2013
Pros: skill and mind sets
Cons: long deployments away from families
typical present day would be as a Life Cycle Material manager for Submarine Engineering Systems. as a Military member my present position allows me to interact with my Civilian counter parts and contractors. I am only one of two military members working with a group of 20 civilians,

Hardness part of my present position would be the lack of military structor that I have come to know over 29 years of service. working out of the comfort zone of the military world and now in a world dealing with other government departments and contractors.

I enjoy the feeling that at the end of the day that I have done my best to ensure that the men and women of the navy and submarine service are getting the best service possible.
Claimed Profile
Headquarters
Ottawa, ON
Employees
10,000+
Industry
Links
National Defence website