How To Become a Recruiter in the US Army in 8 Steps

Updated December 27, 2022

U.S. Army recruiters are professionals who help civilians join the U.S. Army. These professionals often dedicate themselves to the growth of America's military. If you are interested in becoming a recruiter for the U.S. Army, you may need to understand the qualifications you may need. In this article, we explore the career of a U.S. Army recruiter, address frequently asked questions and share the steps you may need to take to become a recruiter.

Related: Joining the Military: Factors To Consider

What is a U.S. Army recruiter?

A U.S. Army recruiter is a military professional who recruits qualified personnel to join the U.S. Army and monitors recruiting and associated activities. Retired or non-active duty army personnel often pursue a career as a U.S. Army recruiter to help improve the recruitment process or to continue their service to the military. Army recruiters often work in major metropolitan areas where they represent the U.S. Army and the Active Guard Reserve (AGR) program.

What does a U.S. Army recruiter do?

A U.S. Army recruiter's responsibilities can depend on the official skill level. The U.S. Army separates army recruiters into three skill levels. Here's a list of each skill level and their primary duties:

Here are recruiters' responsibilities listed by skill level:

Skill level three

Level three U.S. Army recruiters work directly with people who are considering joining the U.S. Army. These professionals often travel to job fairs, high schools and colleges to persuade civilians to enlist. Their primary duties may include:

  • Interviewing potential recruits

  • Handing out informational pamphlets

  • Providing guidance and counseling

  • Deciding if a potential recruit matches eligibility requirements

Skill level four

Though these recruiters occasionally still work with potential enlistees, they mostly maintain correspondence with level three recruiters. These professionals' primary duties can include:

  • Training level three recruiters

  • Analyzing recruiters' individual performance results

  • Proving counsel to recruiters

  • Assisting level three recruiters in signing up civilians

Skill level five

Skill level five recruiters are the most senior professionals in the recruitment field. These recruiters do not work directly with civilians. Instead, they focus on management and development areas of U.S. Army recruitment. Level five recruiters may have the following responsibilities:

  • Developing training programs for recruits and new recruiters

  • Planning community outreach

  • Organizing recruitment campaigns

  • Analyzing recruitment statistics

  • Evaluating recruiter performance reports

Related: Your Guide To Enlisted vs. Officer Ranks in the Military

What are some typical qualities of a U.S. Army recruiter?

U.S. Army recruiters typically possess the following attributes:

  • Leadership: Exceptional leadership and discipline are necessary to operate across various locations and provide guidance to potential recruits.

  • Adaptability: Recruiters often make quick decisions when working with potential candidates. They also travel to different areas to recruit candidates, so adaptability can help them adjust to new environments.

  • Professionalism: The U.S. Army expects recruiters to constantly self-improve and possess the self-discipline to serve as examples for young recruits.

  • Communication and presentation: Recruiters aim to impress recruits during interviews, which requires excellent communication and presentation skills.

  • Technology skills: Recruiters often proactively implement or improve the technology they use during recruiting missions. They also are typically familiar with social media to promote recruiting campaigns.

  • Organizational skills: Strong organizational skills and effective time management can help recruiters manage busy schedules, including travel and appointments.

Related: Everything You Need To Know About Joining the U.S. Army Reserves

How to become a recruiter in the U.S. Army

You can follow the steps below to become a U.S. Army recruiter:

1. Enlist in the U.S. Army

U.S. Army recruiters are soldiers before becoming recruiters, so the first step to becoming a recruiter is to join the U.S. Army. Meet with a recruiter to start the process.

Basic requirements to join the U.S. Army are as follows:

  • Be a U.S. citizen

  • Be between 17 and 35 years old

  • Hold a high school diploma or educational equivalent, such as a GED

  • Pass a physical exam

Once enlisted, you attend Basic Combat Training, which includes physical conditioning, marksmanship, drills and courses regarding U.S. Army values. After you pass basic training, you can pursue Advanced Individual Training that provides you with education to become a recruiter.

Related: Military Careers: A Definitive Guide

2. Complete the Basic Leader Course

As a recruiter candidate, you take part in a one-month Basic Leader course, formerly called the Warrior Leader Course, to learn about combat, leadership, training management, fighting and navigation. The training also includes physical fitness drills and ceremonies. Completing this course requires a passing score for leadership evaluation, the land navigation test, the U.S. Army physical fitness test and other written tests.

3. Meet the recruiter eligibility requirements

The U.S. Army requires recruiting candidates to meet these requirements:

  • Be between 21 and 35 years old

  • Possess a valid driver's license

  • Meet height and weight standards

  • Meet the medical fitness standard, including passing a drug test

  • Hold the rank of specialist, corporal, sergeant, staff sergeant or sergeant first class

  • Have passed the U.S. Army physical fitness test within the past six months

  • Have served less than nine years of active federal service as a sergeant, 15 years as a staff sergeant and 16 years as a sergeant first class

  • Have a minimum of three years of active service remaining after becoming a recruiter

  • Have an infraction-free driving record

  • Maintain a favorable military and civilian disciplinary record

  • Obtain a passing combined score on the verbal expression and arithmetic sections of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery

4. Apply for recruiting positions or be selected

After meeting the proper requirements, finish the recruiter application by completing an interview worksheet and asking your battalion commander and company commander to complete another two interviews and assessment forms.

You also submit a few supporting documents, including:

  • List of preferred work locations

  • Photo ID

  • Personal finances form

  • Proof of mental health evaluation

You can expect a decision regarding your application within four to six months.

If you are already a soldier, the U.S. Army may select you for recruiting duty, even if you don't apply. Assignment managers study soldiers' records and nominate the best candidates to be recruiters.

5. Take the Army Recruiting Course (ARC)

Once you pass the background screening and the U.S. Army accepts your application, you can pursue the U.S. Army Recruiting Course at Fort Knox, KY. During the six-week ARC program, you learn about enlistment requirements, interpersonal communication, Army programs, interviewing, technology systems and time management.

6. Attend the Advanced Training Program (ATP)

While you wait for a professional assignment, you can take an online program called the Advanced Training Program. The ATP allows you to retain your newly acquired knowledge and stay up to date with recruiting policies and requirements.

7. Complete your three-year assignment

Recruiting assignments are usually three years long. At the end of your three-year commitment, you may return to your previous occupation in the U.S. Army.

It is also possible to qualify for another round as a recruiter if you complete 24 months of successful duty recruiting. In this case, you might volunteer to retrain.

Related: 10 Best Jobs in the U.S. Army

8. Continue your education

As an active U.S. Army recruiter, you continue your training through the U.S. Army continuing education system. You also have the option to access a college degree program if you choose to do so. The U.S. Army finances these programs partially and sometimes fully. It can be beneficial to earn a degree that might also help your future career outside of the U.S. Army.

How much do U.S. Army recruiters earn?

U.S. Army recruiters can earn an average of $68,544 per year. However, these salaries can depend on the recruiter's location and experience level.

What is a U.S. Army recruiter's work environment like?

U.S. Army recruiters typically work in an office setting with many other recruiters in their area. Level three recruiters often travel to job fairs, high schools and colleges to find potential recruits. They also may visit malls, supermarkets and other public places. While at these locations, recruiters usually set up a station with informational pamphlets and speak to people who pass by.

What is the job outlook for U.S. Army recruiters?

Recruiters and other U.S. Army personnel typically have a positive job outlook according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is because the military often has a high demand for recruits to replace the number of U.S. Army professionals who retire or receive discharges each year.

Please note that no organization mentioned in this article is affiliated with Indeed.

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