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Old 19th Feb 2012, 10:29   #161 (permalink)
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We need to return to a range of recruiting options - i.e. ex-instructors, ex-military, ex-North Sea helicopters, ex-turboprop and current commercial pilots from suitable companies. That is the most credible way forward and I am disappointed we have not done that. My own view is that the days of company-sponsored type-ratings are over - you can argue whether that is right or not, but that is the future as I see it. In the meantime we have to recognise that market forces will ultimately decide the future of pilot recruitment.
Well well well, you have some interesting points AdM and believe it or not, I sort or agree with you! Sort of... Where we will most probably disagree is the root cause of all this mess.

IMO there is only one fundamental cause for all this and that is a continuous and enormous oversupply of pilots, more specifically: cadets. In your last sentence you refer to "market forces" but how can you rely on market forces when the supply side has been so enormously manipulated by pilot factories like CTC?

Most low cost airlines could be fine places to work T&C's wise, if it wasn't for a few glorified trainers (with links to management or some flight school...? ) drawing in huge numbers of 200 hour cadets which are now threatening to undermine the entire aviation industry because these nave kids have now maneuvered themselves financially between a rock and a hard place by listening to some "senior training captain" telling them fairy tales!

Your statement that 'the days of company-sponsored type-ratings are over' will indeed become a self fulfilling prophecy....because of people like YOURSELF Alexander!! Wake up and smell the coffee!!!

When will you realize that the more you glorify your orange corporate masters and the cadet route, the more you draw in clueless cadets with huge loans, the worse the T&C's for everybody will get? You've been doing this for years and the results we see today: cadets scams, flexi crews, special SOP's to cover for a lack of skills, line captains babysitting rich kids whilst experienced and type rated pilots are unemployed and passed over for selection. And now you are crying crocodile tears about "a lack of balanced recruitment?" Please!

There are plenty of good, experienced and type rated pilots out there looking for work! The world does not don't need more cadets! Not a single flight will get cancelled if the world stops training cadets for one year, however some airlines might actually be forced to increase T&C's and, heaven forbid: even pay for type ratings themselves! We don't need AdM's son or BB's future son or daughter as CTC cadets! Nobody needs these cadets, except for over sized flying schools, airline managers looking for ways to increase their bonuses or a few PPRuNe based training captains (hint hint, wink wink! ) looking for a nice CTC retirement gig!

What this industry needs is a return to a healthy equilibrium of the demand and supply of pilots!
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 10:51   #162 (permalink)
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So you guys in the left seat (AdM, Beazle, Ezy etc) are on here lamenting the CTC "problem", but what did you do about it to stop the rot? Nothing, it's easy to sit fat, dumb & happy on your nice T&Cs & fat wallets, but it's a little bit late now.

Doug The Head - completely agree.
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 13:15   #163 (permalink)
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What this industry needs is a return to a healthy equilibrium of the demand and supply of pilots!
Absolutely, but that can only happen if the government starts intervening and put laws into place. Whether the government wants to stick their hands into this, probably not. The schools are all private, so demand and supply should sort it.....

Would be a good long term solution, for the short term it might not look good for the record.
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 16:58   #164 (permalink)
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Lord Spandex-Masher. You asked the question, 'Are you really saing that Bloggs made it through Linton, Valley, and the OCU without basic talent?' Alas, yes from time to time. Generally speaking, the RAF fast jet training system had sufficient hurdles along the way to prevent that happening, as you have alluded to. However the RAF also suffered that quaint failing of always looking after 'good chaps' whose face fitted, and marginal people who were 'great to have around' could be given a significantly longer piece of rope than their talents merited. So therefore, yes, people could reach frontline squadrons without the fundamental skills and talents to be there. In such cases the final hurdle bagged them and they never got combat ready. If you are ex-RAF, you may possibly recognise the phenomenon and realise what a terrible tragedy such a situation was.

Why, indeed, would an experienced Airbus pilot pay CTC? The answer, as you rightly say, is that he should not. The Harrier pilot, on the other hand, would have to pay the training organisation because he cannot fly an Airbus. My point is that there is no commercial reason for exempting him from that cost if you're going to charge less experienced pilots for that rating.

At no point have I extolled the virtues of CTC. What I have said, is that they have a genuine and credible selection system, whether you like the product or not, and for any young person to become a pilot they are clearly the mechanism that currently exists by which their ambition will be fulfilled.

Doug the Head - how marvellous to read your thoughts once more. I had feared for your safety because your silence had been so great. I thought that perhaps in a moment of despair at being forced to work for the world's worst employer you may have shuffled off this mortal coil. Mercifully, however, you're still with us and all is not lost!

On one level, you make some very good points. I even have to agree with you regarding the oversupply of cadets. It is a somewhat larger leap of faith for me to accept that I am personally responsible for the situation, but that is probably just a character flaw. I do, however, have a number of difficulties with your suppositions. The first is that you or I can have any control over how many young people want to be pilots and what lengths they are willing to go to in order to become one. You were doing so well in being convincing until you could resist the personal insults no longer and assume I must be trying to get some retirement work with CTC. I am in my early 50s, so it is probably a bit too soon to start feathering my own nest just yet. Also, just to clarify the issue of my own son becoming a pilot is purely theoretical as he has no interest in doing so because he sees his Dad working far too hard!

Ezy - if, as your post suggests, you fly every day with cadet pilots who cannot land the aircraft you are either the most unfortunate man in aviation or the training system has got it wrong. I think it is unfair to many of those cadets to suggest that none of them can land the aircraft safely. My personal experience is the vast majority of those cadets are good people and are properly trained. Yes, they lack experience but you cannot gain experience except by flying. There lies the balance. The 'ridiculous' SOPs you referred to presumably relates to the wind call out with Flaps One selection. I think we can safely say that procedural change has not been the most popular in the company's history! Every new pilot is vulnerable to error near the ground and our cadets are no exception. I come back to my original argument that the real problem is not the individual cadets but the sheer number of them. I also totally disagree with the effective policy of not recruiting experienced pilots. We have, however, recently taken in a number of experienced Airbus pilots. What we have not done is take experienced pilots without type ratings from elsewhere, and I cannot in all honesty support that policy.
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 18:35   #165 (permalink)
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Some 15 years ago, I started flying with CTC cadets. At the time I was as sceptical as anybody else about recruiting co-pilots with so little flying experience. Although there had existed limited "fast track" routes into commercial aviation such as Hamble / BEA BOAC later BA, and CSE Oxford into Britannia, and a few others. In reality the "cadet" sector of the airline market was a very small one. Most people either did their time in the air force or cut their teeth on the "stepping stone" jobs until they amassed around 2500 hours with the air taxis, regional airlines, etc. When many then sought out a move to a jet operator.

At around the same time these CTC cadets started to make an appearance, it also coincided with the growth of the new "CRM" industry, which was also regarded with some scepticism. The thing that struck me most with these new "cadets" (and it wasn't the runway,) was their ingrained CRM awareness and their ability to absorb guidance, direction and knowledge, like a dry sponge. At this time I had already been a captain for a decade, and it was in many respects just as much a learning curve for me as it was for the cadets, albeit with regard to different aspects.

Undoubtably I haven't been as unlucky as a few of the contributors here, in that of the hundreds of such individuals I have flown with over that 15 years, I cannot recollect a single one who stood out as being anything other than "well above average" and quick to learn. Recruitment in my particular corner of the world has involved a mix of cadets, military leavers and experienced commercial pilots. However in recent years the cadet recruitment ratios have become greater, even though general levels of recruitment have been relatively low.

The future looks as if this trend will continue, and will evolve into much greater use of the new MPL training regimes. Perhaps I should be sceptical again, but I am optimistic that it will be a good adaption if it is administered well.

Over the last three decades, I have seen a lot of people come into this sector of the industry from all the traditional and new sources. In reality few are problematic. I have seen the odd ex-military joiner with CRM difficulties. Without doubt (and it is still relatively few,) when problems did arise, it was often from low experience "self improvers," and by this I am referring to the days when that meant a couple of thousand hours, not the 200 hours it means today.

In our experience, cadets have been a quality source of input. If that were not the case then I would say so without any hesitation, but it is. Certainly they need mentoring and guidance because of their early lack of experience, but in reality probably no more than many of the "1500-2000 hour" pilots who preceded them 15+ years ago.

As I said at the start of this post, low hour cadets have been around since the sixties. There is nothing new in the concept, only in the proportion of the recruitment market they now represent. When the "pile em high, sell it cheap" concept arrived this side of the pond via Dublin, (also as it happens around 15 years ago!) The MD of that company outraged the entire industry by suggesting that the right hand seat could be eliminated altogether! Whether he was serious or not, that was a non-starter, but it was a clear indication of just how the future was going to evolve. If he couldn't get rid of it (and he couldn't) he was certainly going to reduce the cost to the bone and even turn it into a profit centre. Other Lo-Co's were not quite so outspoken, but it was a cost model they were all going to have to parallel.

As demand fuelled growth in this sector, so the charters and the legacy carriers had to adapt to survive. The recession of the last 4 years has only served to drive that point home. If you don't think so, then look around you. Anyone who is actually recruiting, or threatening to recruit in any serious numbers, is either already largely following this cadet model, or are likely to.
MPL schemes at easyjet and Monarch. FPP cadet programmes at British airways through CTC, Oxford and FTE.

Like it or not this is a growth area, and increasingly likely to be the route to a cadetship with a prime operator. Flight training is eye wateringly expensive. Whether you or I think it is wise or advisable, matters little to people who have decided to make that commitment. They come here looking for the routes available to the jobs that are now being offered and are likely to be offered in the future. The subject of this thread is easyjet, but it doesn't matter whether it is BA, Thomas Cook, Thomson, Flybe, Monarch, DHL, Qatar airways etc. It is pointless advising people to look at options or methodology that these jet operators simply do not recruit from anymore.

For what it may be worth, if they make me world leader tommorow, I would happily make it mandatory for anybody flying an airliner (in either seat) to hold a full (1500 hour) ATPL. The clue is in the name of the licence! However whether that would really prove anything at all is debatable. The reality is what you see when you open your eyes and look around you. The investment and economic markers all point to where growth opportunities are likely to be in the future. Love them or hate them, ab-initio career opportunities are through CTC and to a lesser extent (in the current market) Oxford (a heavy supplier of the other major Lo-Co) and FTE. The same three schools that BA have selected exclusively for their much sought after new programme.

If you refuse to see the reality for what it is, then it is a bit rich to accuse me of being myopic!

So yes, this is the route I would advise my own children to take if this was their choice of career. Hence it would be hypocritical to suggest others take a route I didn't believe afforded the best chance of success. Nevertheless, that advice would as always, come with the strongest of health warnings.
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 18:59   #166 (permalink)

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lovely post Bealzy,

I well remember a roadshow by the Irish company where the man giving the presentation started with "We're a low fare airline, but who pays the most to fly with us?" pause for effect....... "Who pays the most? why the pilots!" silence.....

If people want to pay for the best view, then there are those who will gladly take the money.

BTW Bealzy, it's Thomson, not Thompson, no "p".
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 20:15   #167 (permalink)
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Wheras Studi, some people are not only smelling it, but perhaps consuming just a little too much? You cannot really be this paranoid? I understand your point, but there isn't a conspiracy whatever you may think.

The posts are long to offer some explanation and depth. One liners are well and good, but perhaps you can add something else?
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 21:32   #168 (permalink)
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Well studi, barely a year ago you said:
The problem at hand is not a 200h guy in the right seat. In some parts of the world this is the only viable option to create enough pilots, since GA is small and very expensive.

The problem is how such programs are set up!

My company uses 200h FO since decades, but trains them in their own rigid program.
So 200 hour cadets are fine as long as they are trained the way "your company" does it? Ok.

On this thread you said:
Better options?
1. BA Cadetship
2. Some other sponsorships
3. Any European cadetship with AF, DLH, Swiss, if you are prepared to learn a language
4. Military flight training
5. Other smaller airlines like Jet2, Flybe, etc.
6. Ryanair (as much as I hate to say it, but they hire from all kind of backgrounds)

All of them give you nice jet time!
The prime example is administered by CTC and they are one of the three approved schools. CTC does part of the selection and uses the same wings training syllabus. Obviously good enough when it suits your argument, but not when it doesn't.

2. Other airlines such as easyjet, Thomas cook, Monarch, DHL, etc. use CTC for their cadet schemes.

Most of the wannabes on these forums do not want a military career, and for language, cultural or whatever other reasons are fairly unlikely to have a realistic shot at the mainland European airlines that you have cited.

The smaller airlines might consider applicants from a variety of backgrounds but they also take a very significant input from the main training providers.

I know you don't want to hear it. I know you believe it is wrong. I know you have convinced yourself that anybody who says otherwise, is either irresponsible or in cahoots with the aforementioned training schools. Nevertheless, it is the reality. That is why this thread exists.

Can't stand it? May be you should start smoking the stuff you just mentioned
Coffee? Real to surreal!
Bealzebub is offline  
Old 19th Feb 2012, 21:41   #169 (permalink)
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Or a DESO in QR? With 200hrs. Massive expansion and a tax free salary. And no fast way bus pass back into creepy Crawley
Old 19th Feb 2012, 22:13   #170 (permalink)
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And two more page-long posts by Adm and BB selling CTC the Easy way as the best, only, inevitable, whatever game in town.

I think people are starting to smell the coffee.

The more they paint themselves into a corner with their selfish and self-contradicting sales talk, the longer their posts need to be in order to confuse the few remaining sheeple that haven't smelled the coffee just yet.

Or perhaps they get paid by the word?
Doug the Head is offline  
Old 19th Feb 2012, 22:32   #171 (permalink)
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Why, indeed, would an experienced Airbus pilot pay CTC? The answer, as you rightly say, is that he should not. The Harrier pilot, on the other hand, would have to pay the training organisation because he cannot fly an Airbus. My point is that there is no commercial reason for exempting him from that cost if you're going to charge less experienced pilots for that rating

So we should be comparing the two people who can't fly an Airbus no?

The 200 hour guy with access to 120k and the ex FJ mate.

The ex FJ mate will not get a sniff because the 200 hour guy is going to give you a lot of money.

I'll ask you again - Would you rather be sitting next to a guy who has a lot of flying experience, who has been under severe pressure (especially whilst airborne) and who is capable and adaptable and won't need to be pampered by restrictive SOPs or the guy who is only able to fly and operate the aircraft by following those extremely restrictive SOPs whilst being under extreme financial pressure to such an extent he is turning up unfit to fly?

I've flown with both types and I can say categorically that when the wheels fall off I'd rather be sitting next to the first fella.

I take it that you believe there is a good commercial argument to ignore good skill and experience?

Your point about failing to become CR on a frontline squadron is, I would say, not entirely accurate. Basic talent is required to get as far as a frontline squadron. Failing to become CR is an indication that they may have reached their ultimate limit of ability which far exceeds any 'basic talent'. Generally these guys will be sent to rotary of heavies implying that they are in posession of at least the basics! Granted though that they may be the odd one such as you describe.
Lord Spandex Masher is offline  
Old 19th Feb 2012, 22:33   #172 (permalink)

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Flew with a guy last week, circa 2600hrs, slight crosswind, aircraft pointing into wind all the way down the approach (for 8 miles) and in the flare we were all over the place due to aileron input the wrong way. What is going on?

I think all the CTC proponants have a touch of the Stokholm syndrome.

We have accepted onto the flightdeck a breed of operators, experts in lists, SOPs, tables, FCOMs, but no effective intelligence or piloting skills whatsoever.

The distrust that the CRM empire has instilled in them has ensured that they won't learn from their more experienced colleagues because they don't value experience, having being indoctrinated by the CRM Taliban that old pilots are non SOP.

Fine if you want an operator, but where are we going to get pilots from?
Alycidon is offline  
Old 19th Feb 2012, 23:00   #173 (permalink)
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Ok guys, I give up! You are absolutely right. Ignore these cadet schemes they will not get you in to the likes of BA or Ezy or Monarch or Qatar or DHL or Thomas Cook or Thomsons or Flybe. It is all just an illusion. The 20 people I have just seen start their airline paid TR courses this month, with freshly minted licences don't really exist, it was just made up in a futile attempt to confuse the likes of studi, who has a job with an airline that operates a cadet scheme more to his liking. Also to confuse Doug and Ezy who also have jobs.

The best thing anybody can do is join the ranks of the thousands of other low hour licence holders that populate these forums. They are easy to find.

Obviously my experience over the last 30 years is of little relevance, and the observations are myopic. Clearly they haven't been borne out. Airlines do not recruit from this source. The "holding pool" in the depths of recession, hasn't gone from over a hundred to zero in the last year, despite a steady flow of new entrants.

The training that I have seen, simply fooled me into believing it was good. Those cadets from 15 years ago aren't now 10,000 hour captains (in some cases) holding training and management positions.

I suggest you follow their advice and apply to DLH and Swiss and Air France (good luck with that!) Then come back and report how you got on. Failing that, try BA (careful you don't tell them of your dislike for CTC as it is one of their partners). Give up this silly notion of an airline career for the next ten years and instead apply for a military career. I had mistakenly assumed it wasn't simply a training shop for low cost airlines. Send your cheque for 50 and give Ryanair a go. Lots of people do. Apply for all the "sponsorships" that have been alluded to, as clearly there are a lot of those.

My apologies for confusing reality and observation with "selfish and self-contradicting sales talk" I hope this actual example of self contradiction will somehow make amends. For my selfishness I promise to beat myself with Birch twigs. I hope that most people will have not have been taken in by my obvious deceit.

I would also ask you to mark this post so that it can be revisited in a years time when I will have been proved wrong and the myriads of testimonials to the fact will serve as an atonement for my sins.

In the meantime I will sniff coffee and ready myself for the new intake of cadets who hopefully by October will have 500 hours under their belts and the offer of a contract.
Bealzebub is offline  
Old 19th Feb 2012, 23:08   #174 (permalink)
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How many people with more suitable experience and qualifications have these cadet schemes shunned for the sake of money?
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Old 19th Feb 2012, 23:18   #175 (permalink)
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My goodness Bealzebub, that Crown Plaza hotel in Crawley really must be boring to be spending so much time on here. Same could be said for my current night stop location

EZY is not the be all and end all. I know it is EZY to get brain washed but hey. And BA's ties with CTC are purely for money/finance, regardless of what they actually think of them. APL will play, BA get reduced type rating costs simples, its pure business, nothing else. It smacks of it all over their dedicated website.

Any training route is a gamble. But any route that gives a firm contract rather than contracting has to be better than EZY. And an A320 is not the best thing since sliced bread for any pilot. Bean counters like them, hence there numbers. And there are cheaper options to train, not pay for a TR and get a full time contract IN THE UK!
Old 20th Feb 2012, 01:01   #176 (permalink)
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My goodness Bealzebub, that Crown Plaza hotel in Crawley really must be boring to be spending so much time on here.
For whom? I don't believe it is somewhere I have ever visited.

Look guys I am sorry, but I feel like I have woken up in a Franz Kafka novel.

As I said in the last post:
I would also ask you to mark this post so that it can be revisited in a years time when I will have been proved wrong and the myriads of testimonials to the fact will serve as an atonement for my sins.
So 20th February 2013....It's a date!
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Old 20th Feb 2012, 15:19   #177 (permalink)
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Lord Spandex Masher

Flybe are at the same thing aswell. In fact I met one the other day that was going through Cabair. No flight instructing just straight out of flight school into a shiny Dash 8 on a 5/2 5/2 6/3 I was informed. So why cant the guy bobbling around in his Trilander or doing air taxi get a job with Flybe? Because they rather pluck the lemmings from Cabair FTE and Oxford instead. And lets face it type rating paid for but poor roster and the pay isnt great either.

All very well for you to throw stones sitting pretty in your Embraer out of EGHI.

Glass houses.
antonov09 is offline  
Old 20th Feb 2012, 15:30   #178 (permalink)
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Couldn't have put it better.
BlackandBrown is offline  
Old 20th Feb 2012, 15:32   #179 (permalink)
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Sorry Antonov, wrong guy. I moved out of that glass house a while back.

So why cant the guy bobbling around in his Trilander or doing air taxi get a job with Flybe?
You met one bloke. I've flown with people at Flybe from a myriad of backgrounds. We had ex RAF, multi and noisy pointy things, ex biz jet types, ex Orange types, ex long haul types, abo's, ex instructors, and ex air taxi types. None of whom had to pay one hundred and twenty thousand pounds for the privilege.

I've seen worse rosters (five days on' four sectors a day and 3.30am starts really doesn't do it for me) and the brand new Dash FO takes home more than 250 a month from the beginning, regardless of how many hours he does a month. Did you see the figures posted on page 1?

Edit to add that those chaps with enough experience, like the heavy and fast jet guys and the long haul lot, got a direct entry command.
Lord Spandex Masher is offline  
Old 20th Feb 2012, 15:43   #180 (permalink)
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I met more than one. In previous times yes they took GA guys( I know quite a few) but not anymore. It is now the MPL/Integrated over priced fancy flight school route.

That is where the industry is at. Their all at it.

I and I suspect you joined a very different job market to the one that exists now.
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