Naval Combat Information Operators are responsible for the operation of all shipboard surveillance radars and associated equipment of the shipboard intelligence, surveillance and recognizance systems.
As members of the ship’s Combat Information Organization, Naval Combat Information Operators assist and advise the ship’s leadership in navigation, anti-air warfare, anti-surface warfare and anti-submarine warfare. Their primary duties are to:
Configure and operate:
- Command and Control System
- Ships’ radars
- Intelligence, Surveillance and Recognizance Systems
- Multi-Tactical Data Links
- Global Command and Control System -Maritime
- Information processing systems
- Shipborne Integrated Communication equipment and related sub-systems
- Analyse equipment and system performance on all Combat Information equipment
- Perform basic on-line fault diagnostic procedures
- Collect, correlate, record, analyse, display, and disseminate all tactical information
- Maintain classified logs and publications
At sea, Naval Combat Information Operators work mostly within the ship’s Operations Room with some of the most modern and sophisticated equipment at sea today. Onboard ship, Naval Combat Information Operators experience the unique adventures and challenges that come with work at sea.
As with all sea-going personnel, Naval Combat Information Operators work with their fellow shipmates in out-of-occupation duties such as sentry or lookout duty, line handler for Replenishment At Sea, and as ship hand for entering and leaving harbour. They participate in Search And Rescue events and man-overboard emergencies, act as a member of the ship’s emergency response team for security watches, and routinely perform ship maintenance and repairs. During emergency procedures, they fight fires as members of a Fire Attack Team, and provide damage control in the case of a breach to the hull. If necessary, a Naval Combat Information Operator may serve as a member of the Naval Boarding Party in order to inspect the cargo of suspect vessels and detain the vessel’s crew during inspections.
The starting salary for a fully-trained Naval Combat Information Operator is $49,400 per year; however, depending on previous experience and training the starting salary may be higher. Initially, Naval Combat Information Operators work on Frigates or Destroyers based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, or Esquimalt, British Columbia.
As Naval Combat Information Operators progress in their careers, they will have many opportunities to work at shore establishments and onboard ships. Naval Combat Information Operators who demonstrate the required ability, dedication and potential are selected for opportunities for career progression, promotion and advanced training
The first stage of training is the Basic Military Qualification course, or Basic Training, held at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. This training provides the basic core skills and knowledge common to all trades. A goal of this course is to ensure that all recruits maintain the Canadian Forces physical fitness standard; as a result, the training is physically demanding.
Naval recruits attend the Canadian Forces Fleet School either in Esquimalt, British Columbia, or Halifax, Nova Scotia, for approximately five weeks. Training includes the following topics:
- Naval history and organization
- Shipboard firefighting and damage control
- Shipboard Safety
- Watchkeeping duties
Naval Combat Information Operators attend the Canadian Forces Fleet School in Esquimalt, British Columbia, for approximately 26 weeks, to prepare for their role as the ship’s Anti-Submarine Plotting Operator. Training includes:
- Operate personal computers
- Basic radar and radio theory
- Radar systems operation/check
- Internal and external communications technique
- Tactical display preparation set up and update
- Tactical information correlation
- Use of publications, ship’s logs, files and stateboards
- Evidence and intelligence gathering
- Basic relative velocity
- Conduct Search and Rescue Procedures
- Underwater Warfare Organization
Additional training in tactical network planning and procedures, sensor and intelligence information correlation as well as personnel management and leadership are available to those who demonstrate the required ability and potential. Available courses include:
- Instructional Techniques
- Ship’s Team Diver
- Naval Boarding Party
- Naval Combat Information Operator Iroquois Class Classification
- Basic Submarine Qualification
- Naval Combat Information Operator Submarine Qualification
- Submarine Control Room Watch Supervisor
- Global Command Control Systems – Maritime Instructor
Those who demonstrate the aptitude may have the opportunity to specialize an Information Management Director, responsible to Command for the management of information networking and the dissemination of all-source information. Required courses include:
- Operations and Exercise Planning – Tactical Procedures
- Sensor and Intelligence Information Interpretation
- Advanced Network Planning and Management Courses
This position is available for part-time employment through the Reserves. Reservists generally work part-time for a Reserve unit in their community. They are not posted or required to do a military move. However, they can volunteer to move to another base. They may also volunteer for deployment on a military mission within or outside Canada.
Reservists train with their home unit to ensure that they meet the required professional standards of the job. If additional training is required in order to specialize skills, arrangements will be made by the home unit.
Typically, Reservists work or train with their home unit for at least four evenings and one weekend per month, from September to May of each year. They are paid 85% of Regular Force rates of pay and receive a reasonable benefits package.