He received his advanced military training at the Japanese Military Officers' College, Tokyo, graduating in 1916.
Ho Yao-tsu joined the army service after his return from Japan and first served in the first division of infantry corps of the Hunan Army as a battalion commander and later a brigade commander. He was promoted commander of the same Division in 1923.
When the Northern Punitive Expedition was launched in 1926, Mr. Ho was appointed Commander of the Second Independent Division of the Revolutionary Army and was responsible for the capture of Jiujiang (Kiukiang) from the northern militarists. In 1927, his troops were incorporated into the Right Wing Army operating along the Yangtze and succeeded in capturing Nanjing (Nanking), for which service, he was promoted Commander of the 40th Revolutionary Army and concurrently Commander of Martial Law Forces of Nanjing (Nanking).
Mr. Ho was also elected member of the Central Political Council in 1931. He was appointed Field-Commander of the Third Group Army in 1928 and was relieved of this office after the pacification of the North when the Guangxi (Kwangsi) Clique revolted against Nanjing (Nanking) Government in 1929.
He was appointed chief military counsellor at the Field Headquarters of the Commander-in-Chief and soon later appointed chief military councilor of the National Government with the rank of Marshal which position he resigned in Jauary, 1932. From 1932 to 1934 Ho Tao-tsu served as a Vice-Chief of General Staff. In November 1934, he was appointed Chinese Minister to Turkey.