What is the salary of an OBS instructor? What is the OBS ISP about?
Everything you want to know before applying for the OBS instructor job
21st March 2021
What is the salary of an OBS instructor?
These are the top two questions that people ask me after reading my post. If you are here, chances are that you are considering joining OBS and like the many of you who emailed me, you may have many other questions running through your mind. This post aims to answer the above questions as well as give you a bit more guidance to make your decision.
Pay scale of civil servant extracted from money smart blog
For those who just want the answer:

OBS is under NYC, hence under MCCY(Ministry of Culture, Community & Youth). As such, if you were to join OBS as an instructor, you will become a civil servant and your pay will be tagged to the civil servant's pay scale. The following table from money smart blog can give you an idea of the pay scale:

Most people enter at the MX12 grade. Other than the monthly salary, you will also be given some monthly field allowance once you become operational. Honestly, it is quite a good package for an outdoor instructor.
What is the OBS ISP(Instructor Selection Process) about?
It is a chance for you to get to know more about yourself. If I were to go back in time and re-do the ISP, I would still want to go in without any information about what's going to happen during the ISP. I mean it! This is the best gift that you could possibly give yourself. I know that does not answer the question but if you continue to read below you will see why knowing what happens during the ISP is not so important.

Now for those who want to have a whole picture of the OBS job, first make sure to read my earlier post before continuing.
Is OBS the right choice for me?
You might be a fresh school leaver, an experienced outdoor educator or even somebody who is planning to do a career switch. Whatever stage you are at, you must be wondering whether this is the right job for you.

If you have the passion to work with young people and help them discover more about themselves, this is the job for you. That's as simple as it can get. If you answer no to the above question, this is NOT a job for you.

Some of you might be asking: "But Tesh, don't we need to be experienced and proficient in the outdoors?"

NO! One of the better instructors I know had close to zero background in the outdoors. Let me put it this way: Outdoor skills can be picked up but the passion for impacting young people's life come from within and cannot be taught.

One of the great advantages of joining OBS is that OBS will train you to acquire all the skills needed to lead a group safely and independently in the outdoors.
If you have the passion to work with young people and help them discover more about themselves, this is the job for you. That's as simple as it can get. If you answer no to the above question, this is NOT a job for you.
What does a typical day as an instructor look like?
I will direct you to my earlier blog to see in a candid way how the day of an instructor is like.
What is the thing I don't like the most about being an OBS instructor?
I love my sleep....zzz...
The hours. I love my sleep, but I love creating an impactful experience for the students even more. That does not help me. When we have a group with us, the lights out is at 11pm and morning activities start at 5 55am. You can be efficient and be in bed and sleeping by 11 30pm and up at 5 30am. That gives you a good 6 hours of sleep.

However, often I find myself chatting with fellow colleagues or sparring ideas on how to best conduct the next day's activities that I end up sleeping at 1am. That is why I mentioned earlier that if you do not have a passion for empowering others, this is not a job for you. It is a tiring job but it is rewarding.
What are some other benefits of being an OBS instructor?
OBS might be the only outdoor provider that takes you as a newbie and trains you in all of the soft skills and hard skills for 6 months to be ready to take a group of students. You still get paid during those 6 months. You are trained to get:

  1. Sport climbing level 1, 2
  2. Abseiling level 1,2
  3. Lifesaving 1,2, 3
  4. Kayaking 1,2, 3 stars award
  5. Dinghy sailing level 1
  6. Powered Pleasure craft driving license
  7. Basic Cardiac Life Support + AED
  8. Wilderness Medical First Responder
  9. Challenge Rope course
  10. Soft skills training

Those are the basic training. During the instructor-hood, one will be plotted for more advanced training such as Abseiling 3, Climbing level 3, Tropical Mountain Leadership Proficiency and so on. OBS is an organisation that believes strongly in staff training and development and opportunities are available as you enter your 3rd year to go for attachment in other companies or attend conferences. Again, see my earlier post where I share some snippets of these opportunities.

Lastly, you have a good progression scheme within the instructor-hood (to be a team manager, senior instructor and so on) or could move to the other support units or to the wider NYC family as part of your career choice/movement.
How can I best prepare for OBS and what do they look for in an OBS instructor?
Yes, swimming is also a bit part of it as we operate on an island.
By now you should be able to tell that OBS is looking for passionate individuals who are looking to impact life of young people positively. I presume that if you are still reading, you fit that description.

On top of that, you need to be physically and mentally fit to take care of 16 other young children in your care in the outdoors. While I earlier mentioned that skills and fitness can be picked up, you would want to do so before your ISP to stand a higher chance to be selected. The last thing you want is that your lack of fitness causes your passion to fade away/take a back seat.
What is one advice you can give me?
Know what you want and if this is it, grab the opportunity to learn more by attending the ISP. Wish you all the best in whatever you choose to do!
Need some tips?
If you know this is the job for you, please fill up this form below and I will get in touch with you to help you better prepare for it. I will only be able to help a couple of people so make sure you fill up your details as soon as you are ready. If your profile stands out to me, I will be willing to drop in a recommendation for you.
By clicking the button you agree that we will only use your details to contact you with regards to this request and nothing else.
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