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NATS interview process

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NATS interview process

Old 12th Jun 2022, 15:05
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UK wise Iím looking at potentially looking at a career in ATC. I currently work as a signaller on the railway

Iíve seen some of my colleagues come from the other way but not heard of a signaller becoming an ATC. Does anyone have any colleagues or know anyone who has done this?
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Old 13th Jun 2022, 13:11
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Thatís the point thatís being made though.. you shouldnít have had to seek other employment just to get by. The salary should be enough but the majority need to make huge sacrifices. Many take a salary cut and knowing that they can be posted anywhere, like yourself, end up with double accommodation payments. NATS know this fine well but still pay the minimum they can get away with.

Now if the timescales quoted during recruitment were accurate then thatís not so bad but we were seeing more and more trainees needing hold for months between basic + acs or adi + aps. This is through no fault of their own but throws any budget calculations right up in the air. You can only hope that NATS will take a more logical approach with training post covid rather than just cram in as many courses as possible.

Granted the salary is just for training but itís training to become an ATCO, not a burger builder at McDonalds. Admittedly covid has muddied the waters a bit financially but this has been an issue long before that. It wasnít long ago the salary was 12k and itís not like the company could plead poverty.

Letís use 140 TATCs as an example given we know thatís roughly how many there were when the pandemic hit. To double their salary would cost the company in the region of £2.4million. Then thereís pension and NI contributions too so say £3mil per year. In the 18/19 and 19/20 financial years the company paid out a total of £118million in dividends to shareholders.

Trying to justify a poor training salary as being acceptable just because the alternative is worse doesnít float either. Attempted murder isnít acceptable just because the alternative could have been murder.

Youíre right, not many will have regretted it but Iím sure many will have had doubts mid way though when the purse strings need to tighten. Iím even more sure that a huge number of potentially top class controllers will have decided against applying purely because of the salary which given the amount of talent NATS is going to lose in the next few years is really quite disappointing.
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Old 14th Jun 2022, 12:02
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Originally Posted by essexFC View Post
UK wise Iím looking at potentially looking at a career in ATC. I currently work as a signaller on the railway

Iíve seen some of my colleagues come from the other way but not heard of a signaller becoming an ATC. Does anyone have any colleagues or know anyone who has done this?
I worked with an ex railway guy back in the early eighties, not heard of anyone since.
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Old 14th Jun 2022, 12:22
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Originally Posted by sayitasitis View Post
Thatís the point thatís being made though.. you shouldnít have had to seek other employment just to get by. The salary should be enough but the majority need to make huge sacrifices. Many take a salary cut and knowing that they can be posted anywhere, like yourself, end up with double accommodation payments. NATS know this fine well but still pay the minimum they can get away with.

Now if the timescales quoted during recruitment were accurate then thatís not so bad but we were seeing more and more trainees needing hold for months between basic + acs or adi + aps. This is through no fault of their own but throws any budget calculations right up in the air. You can only hope that NATS will take a more logical approach with training post covid rather than just cram in as many courses as possible.

Granted the salary is just for training but itís training to become an ATCO, not a burger builder at McDonalds. Admittedly covid has muddied the waters a bit financially but this has been an issue long before that. It wasnít long ago the salary was 12k and itís not like the company could plead poverty.

Letís use 140 TATCs as an example given we know thatís roughly how many there were when the pandemic hit. To double their salary would cost the company in the region of £2.4million. Then thereís pension and NI contributions too so say £3mil per year. In the 18/19 and 19/20 financial years the company paid out a total of £118million in dividends to shareholders.

Trying to justify a poor training salary as being acceptable just because the alternative is worse doesnít float either. Attempted murder isnít acceptable just because the alternative could have been murder.

Youíre right, not many will have regretted it but Iím sure many will have had doubts mid way though when the purse strings need to tighten. Iím even more sure that a huge number of potentially top class controllers will have decided against applying purely because of the salary which given the amount of talent NATS is going to lose in the next few years is really quite disappointing.
Very well explained: just to add, if Covid taught us anything, it's that the promise of a job at the end of training is not what it seems. In the good times, yes, but there's no guarantees, whatever the contract says.
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Old 14th Jun 2022, 15:27
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Whilst this thread has gained a bit of activity in recent days/weeks... has anyone got any further insight as to where NATS are with re-inviting courses back to CTC? I believe one Cohort went back in February time, however have there been any more cohorts following ?

Thanks
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Old 16th Jun 2022, 09:51
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Originally Posted by sayitasitis View Post
Also can't believe the comments regarding pay.

As stated above, the salary does go up a bit at unit. You'll be looking at £31k at the top bands after shift pay is included. That's currently as good as it gets for the 1-3 years it takes to get on-the-job training started and validate.

Rant over.. to summarise.. wind your neck in
Can anyone give an idea of the likely progression in terms of salary after the 1-3 years on the job training/validation?
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Old 17th Jun 2022, 07:37
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Originally Posted by bongomark View Post
Can anyone give an idea of the likely progression in terms of salary after the 1-3 years on the job training/validation?
Depends on where you're sent after the college. NATS band their units from 1-5 and the the Band 5 units will see you on over £100k within 10-12 years of validation depending on a few other factors. I don't know what the other units top out at, but it's certainly not a bad salary wherever you end up.
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Old 26th Aug 2022, 11:11
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Ab initio recruitment has started back up as it appears management is finally realising retirements don't stop because of covid. Best of luck all, despite all the issues it's still a great career and will set you up for life.
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Old 26th Aug 2022, 23:37
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Hi AustralianSam,

Could you possibly expand more on your recent post? I.e what you have heard, sources etc?

All things R.E NATS have gone quiet for a number of months now. Iím hopefully for some positive news in the not too distant future.

Regards,

Niall

Originally Posted by AustralianSam View Post
Ab initio recruitment has started back up as it appears management is finally realising retirements don't stop because of covid. Best of luck all, despite all the issues it's still a great career and will set you up for life.
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Old 27th Aug 2022, 18:15
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Originally Posted by NiallC98 View Post
Hi AustralianSam,

Could you possibly expand more on your recent post? I.e what you have heard, sources etc?

All things R.E NATS have gone quiet for a number of months now. Iím hopefully for some positive news in the not too distant future.

Regards,

Niall
The application websie is back up for new TATCs, and they're also recruiting for experienced controllers for all NSL airports per LinkedIn and the job vacancies page. Obviously can't share anything internal, sorry if that's what you're fishing for 😂

I can't post URLs unfortunately, but theyre easy enough to find on the NATS website.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 08:02
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Originally Posted by AustralianSam View Post
The application websie is back up for new TATCs, and they're also recruiting for experienced controllers for all NSL airports per LinkedIn and the job vacancies page. Obviously can't share anything internal, sorry if that's what you're fishing for 😂

I can't post URLs unfortunately, but theyre easy enough to find on the NATS website.
When I go to the application page for TATCs it says 'Application window currently closed".
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 13:34
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Originally Posted by Ft1989 View Post
When I go to the application page for TATCs it says 'Application window currently closed".
I've just seen that myself - should have clicked through to confirm! Sorry for being misleading, it appears just experienced ATCOs are being recruited for now
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 22:23
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It's still a positive sign that recruitment is starting up again. Hopefully it will filter through to trainee's soon

Have the trainees that were let go during Covid all now restarted training? There was a plan to restart them in 3x cohorts throughout this year?
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Old 30th Aug 2022, 11:37
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Originally Posted by ManUtd1999 View Post
It's still a positive sign that recruitment is starting up again. Hopefully it will filter through to trainee's soon

Have the trainees that were let go during Covid all now restarted training? There was a plan to restart them in 3x cohorts throughout this year?
Some are back and some aren't, those i have spoken to who haven't started yet were 'fresher' trainees i.e only a few months into their courses before COVID and they're yet to receive an official restart date, but they are certainly going back at some point (my guess is still early 2023)

But there are definitely trainees back as we speak. How many, i don't know.

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Old 28th Sep 2022, 14:32
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Little snippet of info from the NATS instagram today:

"we do not have a date for when we will be recruiting controllers again. It will most likely be 2023 at the very earliest."

A somewhat negative outlook
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Old 5th Dec 2022, 13:32
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Hello all - long time reader first time poster.

I was offered a role on the Trainee Air Traffic Controller back in early March 2020 - obviously we all know what happened next.

Are many of you in the same situation as me? Last I heard from NATS was back in September when they emailed to say they 'are now beginning to plan when we may be able to begin returning those that are waiting to join, on a phased basis.'

If any of you are in the same situation, have you been offered training dates yet? or do you know of anyone who has?

Cheers
John
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Old 7th Dec 2022, 16:59
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Hi John,
I'm in exactly the same position and haven't heard anything since September, unfortunately. Just waiting to hear and keeping fingers crossed.

Cheers
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Old 7th Dec 2022, 18:53
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Same boat here, last email in September, nothing further heard
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Old 7th Dec 2022, 21:20
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Originally Posted by JohnLi View Post

If any of you are in the same situation, have you been offered training dates yet? or do you know of anyone who has?

Hi John,

I am also in the same position. Last email in September and I was initially offered the position in March 2020.

The only person I have heard of returning is somebody who was cut after they had commenced training, they have just been invited back to start in January.

Fingers crossed we all here something soon. I am hoping this side of Christmas but who knows.
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Old 18th Jan 2023, 23:25
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I'm still waiting to apply for ATC, I got an amazing opportunity in airside operations at my local airport now so I'm going to wait a few years to get experience and let the inevitable backlog of applicants calm (and to save up to cover the year of low-ish pay )
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