View Full Version : BAE - incompetency uncovered

27th Oct 2001, 01:09
Apparently things at BAe in Jerez are going belly up. Management is in disarray and managing to alienate their 'customers' and no-one is managing to finish on time.

Before everybody starts talking, the flight school is seriously undermanned and behind in their courses and the groundschool has managed to sack one of the best teachers there. Not only this but none of the 'customers' are told what is happening or why. That might be fine for some but a lot of people are annoyed that they are spending 50 grand to be treated like kids and like crap.

Why is it that as soon as you get into aviation people think that thye can treat you like crap?? Any other business would go bankrupt.

Before people say I am just gossiping - if you know anyone there then ask them what the current situation is and what is being done about it. It needs to be sorted.

And courses are still coming in at one a month which is more than can be dealt with here without detriment to people here. That is a fact. WWW - maybe you should go out there and have a look yourself and see what is happening. :confused:

Capt Wannabe
27th Oct 2001, 02:27
Who has been sacked from groundschool?

27th Oct 2001, 03:52
John Dixon has been sacked.

27th Oct 2001, 05:04
Apache sounds like an ex-employee or stupid student axe-grinding a******e, so (why) was John Dixon really sacked?
Also, positive things have been said about BAE Jerez- WWW maintains it's the best, as is everywhere else he has worked or trained !
Seriously, how or why is BAE now so bad?
What are the facts?
What are the causes of the alleged problems at BAE?

27th Oct 2001, 05:30
Sort your own house out first Query.

Last time i was having a meal in your school there was 1 instructor for your whole fleet.

I met Ken down in Kissamee and your despatch officer in the golf club so don't throw stones. I an't linked to anyone but i have been told i won't get a job in several fleets because i did my ppl with your school which isn't told in your advert.
Please tell your future PPL's that if they are doing there training with you that they are doing harm to there career in the UK.


Wee Weasley Welshman
27th Oct 2001, 13:34
OK, just for you I have arranged to go down for a few days in 3 weeks time.

I know they are short of FI's but that is about to rapidly change due to the current climate.

Groundschool always was a bit of a basket case but pass rates were comparable to most places. No idea why JD has gone and to be honest we will never know the truth.

One small point I would make is that is a student is delayed in graduating due to the colleges fault - as would be the case here it seems - then their accomodation and board is free.

So in effect all you have lost is either a month sitting on the dole in the wet and windy UK or a month going back to your old job in the UK (assuming nobody snaps you up to fly their GulfstreamV two days a week to Rio at the moment.. :( )

So it ain't the end of the world really. Not that is any kind of excuse - you should pass through the course in the advertised time. Its not a problem unique to Jerez you know...



BAE employee
29th Oct 2001, 02:54
Here goes on a few of the charges made by AH64Apache.

With regard to the departure of JD - yes he was sacked> No I don't know why. No I will not comment because I do not know the facts and will not indulge in ill-informed speculation based on part info.

We do not have a manning problem. In line with every other FTO we have lost trade due to the recession and therefore have enough people. As WWW says, there is every likelihood that we will be able to recruit almost at will becuase of the current situation - and even before the 11th sept we had rejected several applicants for groundschool instructors (coming from other FTOs) because we are being choosey.

To the best of my knowledge, any delays experienced are minor and again quoting WWW (who is better informed than Apache) what have they to go home to anyway?

We can handle one course a month - although some more FIs would be handy as you can see from our advert in Flight. However, see above re; recruiting.

Sure, there are some of us who are unhappy with the management - can anyone honestly say they love all their bosses? On the up side, we have been assured by the Chairman of BAE Systems (Sir Richard Evans himself)that we have the unequivocal backing of the board to ride the recession - we will NOT be going out of business. Who else can say that? We have also just hadf a pay rise as a reward for meeting financial targets - once again, who else in this industry can say that?

I am not going to prentend that everything is rosey - it is not, with the departure of John Dixon leaving an "atmosphere" over then place. additionally, the whole industry is under a cloud and that has people worried - even with the support the board has given. workload has been high, and will be for some time, but we cope. Many/most schools in the UK have a big problem with late graduations due to weather/priorities/manning and I am not going to name and shame as that has been done regularly elsewhere.

However, the picture is nowhere near how Apache paints it and I for one would love to know where he gets his info from. I feel a good deal more secure job wise here than I would do back in the UK.

Note, please, that unlike other people mentioned in other threads we have a FULL 12 month approval from the CAA so at least the authorities are happy with what we are doing.

Lightning ace
29th Oct 2001, 13:23
Mad Jock

I take it from your post. That QUERY is actually A.T.

Kind regards to him if it is. As a true penny pinching Yorkshireman, I am sure you'll pull through this one A.T.
:) :) :)

30th Oct 2001, 02:49
Thereīs been quite a lot said about BAE Jerez recently. Some of it true, some of it pure rumour.

As a student, I would say that BEFORE JD was sacked, the groundschool side was excellent. Now, there is an atmosphere around the place wishing he hadnīt have been sacked. He is an excellent instructor getting excellent results and giving 150% to his job.

As for flying, some people at BAE openly admit that they are quite short of instructors. Hence the advert in Flight. Letīs hope some good instructors come from that.

There are, however, a few "glitches" in the management side of things. Students do feel they are being treated like kids by Senior management and it seems that "students" are being treated like "students" and not customers. So much for īthe customer is always right!īNew member(s) of the management team havenīt impressed students with their(his) so called liaison with students/customers. We can only hope!

30th Oct 2001, 02:57
Sorry to disappoint the 'Mad' Jock and others with similar fantasies but I'm not JD, AT or anyone who worked at or owned a flying school.
This rumour/topic is about BAE so, rather than rubbish, what are the facts about it?

BAE employee
30th Oct 2001, 03:12
If you look at what I and BAE student have posted you are probably pretty close to the facts. The place works, the instruction is good but some (and I stress SOME) of the managers are failing to impress. The Head of Training is moving to a new post - so lets see what the new guy is like when he arrives.

However, don't believe to doom merchants - and also remember that while most students are adults who behave like adults and work hard, there are some imature trainees whobehave like kids, don't put any effort in and deserve to be treated like kids because they hold the rest back.

I prefer the term trainees, by the way - as used by the airlines themselves, because students are smelly, lazy, dope smoking, scroungers in the opinion of most taxpayers!!!

30th Oct 2001, 04:15
AH64 APACHE has (in my opinion) come up with a few true facts still an issue at the college today and I quote

"the flight school is seriously undermanned and behind in their courses and the groundschool has managed to sack one of the best teachers there. Not only this but none of the 'customers' are told what is happening or why. That might be fine for some but a lot of people are annoyed that they are spending 50 grand to be treated like kids and like crap."

Three major points that still seem to exist since day one:
1)Not being able to keep hold of good hard-working instructors therefore undermanned and therefore courses are behind.
2)Lack of communication with client/student/pupil/customer/trainee (whatever they are called)
3)Lack of respect or appreciation to the client/student/pupil/customer/trainee and the client/student/pupil/customer/trainees "investment".

Yes, BAE employee, there are some people who behave like kids and deserve to be treated like kids but why does the minority have to rule. Perhaps nowadays maybe they are more of a majority.

For those of you in Jerez; grit your teeth :mad: and work hard and those days with the college will one day be forgotten. It's well worth it ;)

Even when you're wrong..yawright sir!!

30th Oct 2001, 04:21
Cruel but good point from BAE guy.
Too many Wannabes seem to believe that because you are a customer (or a customer's cadet), the school is supposed to pander to your every whim, grovel to get you to work, or fly !, and tolerate your misbehaviour.
The wrong attitude is not unique to training and similar to that of scum who hire in the belief that this gives them the right to abuse the aircraft and anyone who points out the error of their ways.

Wee Weasley Welshman
30th Oct 2001, 11:17
Students ALWAYS hate FTO management be it at Jerez, Kidlington, Cranfield or Little Piddlington-on-the-Marsh...

And they always will.

The reasons are numerous but I'm off to Faro now so will have to explain later.



30th Oct 2001, 15:48
Further to my point yesterday, I would not deter anyone from coming to Jerez. In fact, I would reccommend it to anyone. The facilities are great and it is 25deg, 2 days before November!

The Head of Training isn`t the problem for me personally. The problem lies with a new senior manager who is failing to impress students. Maybe management above him will realise this and take note of these comments.

Want To Fly
31st Oct 2001, 02:08
I would second BAE Students comments. Jerez is a fantastic place to train, the good points far out-weigh the bad.

31st Oct 2001, 03:56
Usual pro and anti stuff so far from employees, students and well-wishers, like me, but where is the Apache who started it?

Send Clowns
31st Oct 2001, 04:16
:rolleyes: That's an exageration, WWW. I was a student at SFT - would I have accepted a job if I hated the management? I have never even seen hatred of management here (though some exasperation when, inevitably though rarely, something goes wrong). Hence our reputation as a friendly, approachable school.

Though I must say I have heard student opinions of one of the schools (not Jerez I hasten to add) you mentioned that are less than complimentary, so maybe in your experience (is that limited to Jerez?) students hate management. Please don't include SFT with your sweeping generalizations, and I'd suggest the same for at least two other schools, one a groundschool and another full FTO I have heard good things about.

There was always the general caution at SFT of the management who has to make money from the services we were purchasing. However the students overall see the management as businessmen who are firm but overall fair. I won't repeat what I have heard about the management at Jerez, as it is not personal experience. However I heard it from a man you know (not a student), who knows them better even than you do!

31st Oct 2001, 10:55
What has happened to the BAeS website for J-de-la-F? It used to be available on the internet and was an excellent marketing tool. If I was a novice pilot looking for somewhere to train, the choice between training at a tatty little mud-and-gravel aerodrome with no proper approach aids in one of the most expensive parts of England or training in the glorious sunshine of Jerez at lower cost wouldn't be difficult to make....

Who are this drippy bunch whingeing about their treatment as 'customers'? You wish to become pilots, you learn some discipline. The fact that you're paying for your flight training gives you certain statutory customer rights, but don't expect mollycoddling. 'Discipline' doesn't mean clomping about in big boots and doing press-ups with some psychopath screaming in your ear - but it does mean being smart, punctual and presentable, showing courtesy to your seniors and listening to criticism. Better get used to it - because that's what your airline will expect!!

[ 31 October 2001: Message edited by: BEagle ]

Wee Weasley Welshman
31st Oct 2001, 13:37
BEagle makes a very valid point.

I have, over the years, heard moaning about every large FTO management. Including SFT.

The reasons are varied and complex. Largely they have to do with the fact that a student is spending Ģ50 grand and the school is making about a Ģ1 grand profit out of them. So one party is spending and incredible amount of money and the other is making very little.

This leads to a great imbalance in the customer/vendor relationship. Students expect the customer service that they would enjoy in a Jaguar delearship. The FTO can only afford Harrys Car Kiwk Mart customer service.

The whole process of ground and flight training is hard work and stressful.

This leads to frayed tempers which - often - post successful training ex-students often wonder what they were complaining about. Inevitably some students struggle due to their own lack of calibre. It is an unfortunate human attribute that one tends to blame everyone BUT yourself. The first and the easiest target is FTO management.

People rarely blame the ground or flying instructors. They rarely blame their course mates who drag them off down the pub. But the Management...

I do not want to be an apologist for BAE. I think that they probably do need a few more FI's to match their impressive fleet of aircraft. I think that their groundschool is mediocre. I think that at Ģ47k the course is probably the best bet for the single Wannabe looking for the full integrated course. I personally would follow the modular route as I have never had access to that kind of money and I think that you can pick the best groundschool and the best flying training much much better by going modular.

But I know an awful lot about training so I am atypical.

I was talking this week to 3 ex-Jerez student who ALL moaned about the place/management/groundschool/food/Spain when they were there. To a man they look back on their time there with great fondness, think it was the right place to train and wish to go back for a visit soon...



BAE employee
1st Nov 2001, 02:27
BEagle and WW make good points about discipline and standards - these are the kind of things that apotential emplyer will look for. It is, after all, a job that requires high personal standards if you are to be a safe and efficient operator.

However, there are some people here on the staff side who look down their noses at the "little boys and girls" going through training. Some forget that they were in the same position once - others just have a bad attitude and like to feel superior. Some of the staff are excellent at working with the students - treating them as adults and thereofre getting the best from them. Some managers and administrators just seem to see the staff and students as an adminstrative burden that gets in the way of pushing all the paperwork around (BEagle - does that sound familiar?).

However, while we have good and bad on the staff side the same goes for the students. How do you deal with a multi engine student who only bothers to turn up to fly when a) he feels like it and b) is sober enough? We had one until recently.

I amazed at the high standards achieved by some of the people we teach - and I am also amazed at some who just can't be bothered (even if they are self sponsoring!). And to not put in any effort when a sponsor is picking up the bill is shameful!

Still, I reckon that you could say the same at any FTO/Military FTS so nothing changes.

Want To Fly
1st Nov 2001, 02:35
WWW a response to your post.
The ground school at Jerez is mediocre!!! Rubbish. The ground school lecturers in my opinion are absolutely first class, the subject notes I agree are not fantastic but this has been realised and new notes are being written at this moment and some have even been distributed already. The only thing I could possibly fault it on is an occasional lack of visual aids, but even this is changing with the current CBT and there uses in some classes. Although I do not have first hand experience of another school I can only tell you about my experience here relating to ground school which has been overal a happy one. I agree that ground school is probably not the most entertaining part of the ab-initio course, but I think BAE do there best to make it as manageable as possible.
Secondly you say that a company canīt afford to pay for customer service. I think when people talk about customer service in realtion to flight training they do not expect employees of the FTO to kneel down and kiss there feet when they walk into a room. All people want is to be treated fairly, to be given honest information and spoken to on an equal level. That costs nothing and to say that an organisation canīt afford that illustrates to me that you missed the point in the post entirely.
Lastly could you just tell us how you find out that FTOīs only make one thousand pounds profit per student, I really canīt believe this is an accurate figure. :mad: :mad: :mad:

1st Nov 2001, 02:52
Some good and true points raised by Want To Fly there. WWW - what are you going on about? If BAE are only making 1000pounds per student, they wouldnīt still be here!

Not only is Groundschool excellent, the Flying side, although short of instructors has some good quality staff at the moment and they are working damn hard to get students flying.

BAE Employee says that administration staff have no customer relations. UNTRUE! They are a fantastic bunch of people. There is one person who "is not being given enough money" to provide "customer relations!" Enough said.

Wee Weasley Welshman
1st Nov 2001, 18:34
Groundschool was mediocre when I was there. Not appalling, not great, just mediocre. I've seen lots of different groundschools and that is my opinion. OATS were clearly doing a better job last year and if you ever get a chance to have a look at the Bristol notes and CD ROM you'll see instantly how it could be done better...

I don't think anyone at Jerez would take offence at me saying that. There were problems with the leadership of Groundschool compounded by a geographical move, a near total change of staff and the introduction of JAA. I wouldn't have liked to tackle all that.

As for what a school makes per student profit then it ain't much. I used a grand as a very rough and ready low--figure-to-hand. Its not far off though.

If you look at some of the figures bandied about at the time of OATS sale you would start to realise the low profit margins in flight training. Prestwick made a loss for more years than it made a profit... I've heard the management say there that if they give 5 hours Senecca time free to a student then they make a loss on them...

Some parts of training make more money than others. MCC and JOC courses for example being very much more profitable than the flying training side of things.



1st Nov 2001, 19:57
Dear boys and girls,

Most of you seem to have overlooked the fact that like it or not, customers (students or otherwise) are the people who pay your wages. Treat them with contempt and they bite - trust me, I know (some of them literally!!!).

Justified or not, they are entitled to whinge, and you are paid to deal with it. The airlines don't treat paying customers the same way the FTOs do (or if they do perhaps that is why they are all going bust!), so don't give me all this c**p about it is what the airlines expect because it is good for discipline. It is nothing but an excuse for people who aren't capable or willing to manage an operation to the required standard.

If FTOs were able to meet the standards BEagle wants to see in all students, there wouldn't be a poroblem to start with. Put your own houses in order first guys, then slag off the punters!

:mad: :mad: :mad:

Wee Weasley Welshman
1st Nov 2001, 22:37
For this thread to progress anywhere I think we need tanible gripes.

Get specific chaps or else it just sounds like a general whine.

Which is fine.


2nd Nov 2001, 19:39
BEagle - the website you are after is: www.baesystems.es (http://www.baesystems.es)

The weather is lovely -2nd November and it is actually HOT today, not just warm. Read it and weep.

[ 02 November 2001: Message edited by: moggie ]

2nd Nov 2001, 22:25
TVM moggie - can't understand why there's no link from the BWoS main site!

Why would anyone ever bother with Kidlington when there's J-de-la-F available??

Salud y pesetas...

3rd Nov 2001, 02:48
BEagle - I can't comment upon your last post as that would be deemed to be advertising!

However, I may be off to the beach for a barbeque sunday, if it's not too warm!

Pete O'Heater
3rd Nov 2001, 03:11
You do talk some S**T!
I went to SFT for my Twin rating and the place was pants! lack of decent instruction, 3 week course draggggggged out to 6 weeks and crisis management from top to toe.
As for your views on the 'customer' you really do need to start believing that those deemed (by you) to be below your level are clever people with a VALID opinion!
How about the aviation schools admitting (for once) that they are to blame for all the added expense and delayed output that students suffer?
I can't speak about Jerez in particular, but it seems to be full of the same, sad old stories I was given at Bournemouth!

3rd Nov 2001, 11:34
P O'H - sorry to hear of your troubles. However, as far as I can recall, I have never made any comment about SFT, so am a little perplexed at the vitriol of your rhetoric. Nevertheless, best of luck with your future training.

Pete O'Heater
3rd Nov 2001, 12:20
What future training? Like you I'm a fully qualified pilot!
I wasn't insinuating that you did remark about SFT - it was in the other threads. I was merely observing your inappropriate remarks concerning trainees and your defence of companies that in general are well below par. For example, I was a military pilot with 2500 hours fast-jet when I attended SFT for my civil twin rating - the first thing the instructor tried to teach me in the air was LOOKOUT! The lack of awareness, structure and instructor ability in these organisations leaves much to be desired. This kind of corporate blundering is what concerns the originator of this forum and is a totally valid worry. Come on all you flying training units, get your act in order before insisting that your clients do the same!

3rd Nov 2001, 14:08
Much of the comment above seems to stem from a difference in expectaions.

Perhaps FTOs should produce a 'charter' for want of a better word that sets out EXACTLY what the student can expect from the FTO and also EXACTLY what the FTO expects from the student.

Done properly, (ie in consultation with the people who will have to deliver the promises) a document would go a long way to managing expectations.

Just a thought.

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