Major airlines such as Emirates and Qantas Airways have recently thrown their efforts into hiring new pilots but struggled to use their jets in compliance with their business plans due to the barriers training providers set. Problems with training centers and more obvious current issues, like uncomfortable working conditions for pilots (which result in pilot unions seeking for better conditions), or salary related questions (AIR France case), all seem to signify wider problems in the industry.
Questions of pilot shortage were raised during the 2018 International Air Transport Association (IATA) annual meeting in Sydney, where IATA revealed 12 percent lower profit expectations for 2018 due to raising fuel and, eventually, labor costs. Solutions appear to be complex and need a forward-looking strategy.
Actions taken to curb pilot shortage around the world are dealing with different sides of the problem. For instance, various types of events represent a different approach to the problem solving, like “Girls Take Flights” in Ottawa, Canada, the main goal of which is to engage young girls and women to get interested in flying.
Another innovative attitude towards the profession is observed on the example of recruitment events. In opposition to a more traditional one-sided approach, when airlines and recruiters are organizing job fairs to find potential employees, stands a more complex solution. More and more airlines are exiting the comfort zone of their private roadshows and reaching out directly to pilots. For instance, Pilot Career Show Amsterdam, held in May 2018, attracted airlines like Emirates, China Airlines, Small Planet, Wizzair and many more that came to introduce themselves to a pool of possible hires. The main point of this approach is to shift the focus to pilots and let both sides to find the best match.
The second Pilot Career Show will serve as a platform for interchange between hiring companies, pilots and cadets in Istanbul, Turkey, on June 21st, 2018. More than 15 prestigious airlines and recruitment agencies have already shown interest to participate in the event. Pilot Career Show aims at extending its scope and is followed up by a number of events worldwide. More information: www.pilotcareershow.com.