How tech damaged the ATC (& how do we move forward positively)

I will jump right to the point.

I do not like that concept of online 3822. Why? Because in my opinion it takes away what is part of being an air cadet. You no longer are given a real 3822, something that been in the tradition of our organisation from the start.

From 1941 each cadet had been handed in their 3822 at enrollment. Each decade the design changed but always and always kept the sense of belonging, a personal trophy, a memory. Suddenly the 3822 is being retired in favor of the digital version in the 2020s. I am not against digital aids such as cadet portal or bader as they indeed help our experience, but seriously we need to dump the key document of every cadet in favor of an online app?

I am lucky to still hold the 3822. I remember my enrollment ceremony back in 2018. The thrill I remember of being handed my 3822 was unbelievable.

It was the moment I truly joined our organisation.

Now I feel sympathy for the junior cadets that join my squadron, watching the enrollment ceremony with the patron just shaking hands (I half expected him to ask the cadet to log into their accounts!).

I really do believe air cadets is still an amazing experience and memories are important, but I can’t imagine myself placing my smartphone on a shelf. Your 3822 memory will sit in some server.

I won’t be surprised if next parade nights give way to virtual ones, virtual brassards and virtual kiwi.


You are not the only one.


It is quite disappointing to no longer have a physical memento like the 3822 for the new ones. Enrolments feel incomplete in my opinion.


I still have my original F3822 from 1974.


Still have mine (ok the replacement one as the first one got washed…I blamed Mum, she blamed me :joy:) in a box, with my clasification badges, Sqn number, Staff cadet lanyard, NCO rank tabs from Cpl to CWO, Wing Blues, other badges, etc and all the memories that go with it in my head. Occasionally the logbook comes out and i look at everything the Corps gave me. Physical memories. I dont think i will be logging on to check my Volunteer Portal record in the future, thats if it can be accessed in the future when i have left the Corps. Hey ho. Its progress apparently and i am now officially an old git. :+1::joy::rofl:


It is a shame but progress marches ever forward.

A Cadet won’t miss what they never had, but in an ideal world the money saved will go into something else that might give them a memory they might otherwise have not gotten.

That said, I like @intheshires have a little box that contains the same mementos. It used to hold my beret too, but since going back into uniform the beret gets outings when doing fieldcraft - a nice feeling to be teaching new Cadets in the same lid I wore when I received them myself :slight_smile:


Yeah, many will say bring back the Chippie or the Bulldog, or the .303 over the L98 :man_shrugging:

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For parade shoes that are “virtually” polished… nearly there… but more effort cadet!

SLR surely. Or the Bren

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Playing devils advocate, what is stopping you from creating your own enrollment certificates?

An enrollment certificate is cool and all that, but your 3822 actully had everything you did written in it. So you could flick through it and look at all the signatures, it felt more real and meant more than having it all on a screen. It also allowed cadets an easier way to compare while on an activity, in terms of stuff like WHTs and things not visible in terms of badges and rank.

In the same way that having ÂŁ200 in ÂŁ10 notes feels like more money than seeing ÂŁ200 on a screen. Which is also why buying things in cash is harder because you have to give someone a physical item rather than just clicking pay or tapping your card.

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Moving away from the 3822 - tech certainly has benefited but it has also really hampered us.

Previously to get an event approved you completed the forms and sent it off hard copy for it to be checked then it went to region & then back down to yourself.

A right faff that technology has made easier.
However what it has meant is that volunteers are now instantly contactable by the centre for all sorts of bumf & trivia.

The amount of emails is ridiculous & processes are rolled out with out any consultation or consideration of how they will work on the ground.

Previously changes were communicated & a date of when they would take effect from.

Now it’s slapped into an IBN & bang process change, start using it. IBN not quite right? Just issue a new one.

This constant change means the organisation is never stable & is always in a state of flux. Volunteers have difficulty absorbing changes &

if you take more than a couple of weeks off you can end up missing three or more changes of the same policy.

A classic example is the advertising of Sqn OC roles across region. This is not out of the ordinary & part of the standard churn. Previously the adverts would col look aged & sent out as a oner. Instead we get a constant reminder that people are giving up Sqn OC roles because they are fired out in multiple emails.

The tech is good where it stream lines a process & makes it easier.

Tech is bad when it encourages information overload or micro management from three tiers above.


Why should we have to create our own?

Cos it’s your sqn, HQAC or whoever won’t know what you’d want your cirtificates to look like, as every sqn would be diffrent based on their logo and other features. And all you have to do is print them off, you don’t need a spcial seal or anything

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We’re a uniform organisation, the whole point is that things should be similar everywhere.

It’s an enrollment into the air cadets, the unit in question is secondary. Once you’re enrolled you could be a member of any unit, and can easily transfer. The receipt of the 3822 helped signify this. Now, a cadet has nothing tangible.


If people really want a 3822 type thing back, all sqns could agree on what it would look like and be like and then all get them themselves. And when HQAC askes, just say, we all wanted a paper record of cadet service and they happened to look the same.

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lol, never happening.


this x 100

it was a system which makes sense.
nowadays it is released outside of the CoC (ie via Social Media) and the first CFAVs/Sqn OCs know about it is when Cpl Green comes up and asks “Sir I saw this on Insta and want to know more/apply”

Why can’t we have a system which gives us a week or better still a fornight-month’s notice something is going to change.

My employer recently changed the smoking arrangements on site (they built a new smoking shelter out of site of visitors around the back, moving the habit out of site) - although the new shelter was built and ready for use (and indeed was used) in Mid-November the closure of the previous smoking area didn’t occur until yesterday (1st December) it isn’t a big thing but meant there was a clean cut off and everyone had notice around personal holidays and business trips that the policy for smoking on site was changing…


you shouldn’t - see the link below

you mean like the link below

Taken from the ACC Drive:


You realise you’re all using the internet to moan about technology right?

And I thought this place couldn’t get any stupider.