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NATS interview process

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NATS interview process

Old 5th Jun 2023, 14:57
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Just got another email from NATS, new assessment centre dates releasing 9am on the 7th of June!
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Old 5th Jun 2023, 16:43
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I know some people have heard and have been allocated courses. Best of luck for those waiting.
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Old 7th Jun 2023, 09:03
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Managed to book the stage 3 assessment at 9am this morning.. 22/06/2023
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Old 7th Jun 2023, 09:42
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Originally Posted by Retsek
Just got another email from NATS, new assessment centre dates releasing 9am on the 7th of June!
that went wellÖ..

Clicked the link at 9am as stated. Website clearly overloaded as extremely slow to load. Dates available in June + July. Clicked on one to book - page refreshes and says all slots taken. This was at 9.03am

Contacted NATS and they confirm all slots full @ new slots will be released at some point in the future, but then donít know when.

seems like itís a case of faster finger first and a bit of luck! This could potentially happen each time they release new slots?
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Old 8th Jun 2023, 07:05
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hi
i tried from 9am and untill 9:30 am it still showed slots are currently unavialable.
Is there any trick that you did to get it done?Please help.
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Old 8th Jun 2023, 08:41
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Man Utd 1999. Maybe relax a little. Probably not best to criticise your potential future employer before youíve got the job. Trust me you will have 30+ years to do that!
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Old 8th Jun 2023, 09:02
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I think most people would accept that they have finite capacity and you might need to wait a bit, but what seems suboptimal is the lottery style allocation of Stage 3 and inviting more people for it who applied more recently, who might get lucky ahead of people who were invited ages ago. It shouldn't come down to luck of when you click a link. This isn't ticketmaster. I would have preferred to be allocated a date without any choice over this process. Once you get a Stage 3 invite, you'd think there would be capacity for you.

Personally I've stopped waiting for anything now and accepted Stage 3 won't happen. They clearly have an excess of people which is great for them
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Old 9th Jun 2023, 03:50
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Anyone else on here been placed on the 2nd October course at Whiteley?
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Old 9th Jun 2023, 09:13
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Originally Posted by chiranjib
hi
i tried from 9am and untill 9:30 am it still showed slots are currently unavialable.
Is there any trick that you did to get it done?Please help.
I've refreshed the page at 9am on the dot, took a good few seconds to load..
It did show up a date for next week and one at the end of the month.
Both dates wouldn't suit me so I refreshed the page.
After it reloaded, it came up with 2 different dates and I picked one of them.
Hope this helps
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Old 9th Jun 2023, 23:50
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Originally Posted by Beachboy1
Anyone else on here been placed on the 2nd October course at Whiteley?
When did you take the stage 3 assessment?
I am taking the stage 3 assessment this month and was hoping to get placed on the course this year however I have been adviced that it could possibly be 2024.
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Old 16th Jun 2023, 21:28
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anyone know how long after you complete stage 3 you have to wait before you get an update if youíve been accepted/rejected? We were told minimum 2 weeks and itís been almost a month.
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Old 20th Jun 2023, 16:49
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Just clicked on the link in the email to see if news slots have been released. Thatís what it says:

There are no time slots available for this event. Please contact us so that we can consider alternative options.

Is that a general message or we are supposed to contact NATS if we are still waiting for getting a slot for stage 3?
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Old 1st Jul 2023, 15:40
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Hi everyone,

I have recently started looking into everything surrounding this line of work and have a couple of queries if anyone has the answers!

I know the trainee salary has been discussed on previous pages but just looking to see if anyone has any updated information.

Basically, the base trainee salary would be less than half of my current wage and I live around eight hours drive from the training college so would obviously need to relocate during that process - I would need to continue to pay for my mortgage/bills etc at home too though.

I was just looking to see if anyone knew how long you are on the initial salary plus the £7000 (ish) accommodation expenses per year. Does this level of salary continue until you are fully qualified? So around two - three years? And do you continue to get the accommodation payment after leaving the training centre?

Once you are fully qualified what do increments generally tend to look like - I know this will depend on where you work etc but just looking for a rough guide.

It is a line of work I would love to become involved in, but obviously a lot to weigh up. I think I could just about get by nine months of the basic salary and living away - even if I was lucky enough to be placed at a unit near my home in the west of Scotland I think I could just about continue at that level of earnings but anything outwith that and I think it would be impossible sadly.

Huge IF questions as I appreciate how hard it is to get selected anyway, but better to look at all the practicalities now!

Any help would be greatly appreciated
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Old 1st Jul 2023, 17:29
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Hi, any one who has recently attended stage 3 is the ATC knowledge test multiple choice?
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Old 3rd Jul 2023, 18:36
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Recruitment Ďpausedí after 11th July until early next year, according to NATSí FB post. Current applications will be processed in the meantime.
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Old 4th Jul 2023, 06:28
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Originally Posted by X33
Hi everyone,

I have recently started looking into everything surrounding this line of work and have a couple of queries if anyone has the answers!

I know the trainee salary has been discussed on previous pages but just looking to see if anyone has any updated information.

Basically, the base trainee salary would be less than half of my current wage and I live around eight hours drive from the training college so would obviously need to relocate during that process - I would need to continue to pay for my mortgage/bills etc at home too though.

I was just looking to see if anyone knew how long you are on the initial salary plus the £7000 (ish) accommodation expenses per year. Does this level of salary continue until you are fully qualified? So around two - three years? And do you continue to get the accommodation payment after leaving the training centre?

Once you are fully qualified what do increments generally tend to look like - I know this will depend on where you work etc but just looking for a rough guide.

It is a line of work I would love to become involved in, but obviously a lot to weigh up. I think I could just about get by nine months of the basic salary and living away - even if I was lucky enough to be placed at a unit near my home in the west of Scotland I think I could just about continue at that level of earnings but anything outwith that and I think it would be impossible sadly.

Huge IF questions as I appreciate how hard it is to get selected anyway, but better to look at all the practicalities now!

Any help would be greatly appreciated
You're on the training salary until you arrive at a unit. Then, if I remember correctly and I'm prepared to be wrong on this, you lose the living allowance, but you gain the anti-social hours payment which is very similar to the living allowance. Your salary does go up by a few thousand too. However, it's unlikely that your college journey would be smooth. You may well fail a stage or end up holding whilst the course ahead of you finishes their course and then your 9 months at the college is suddenly 12 or longer.

Regarding location, you can be sent wherever the company needs you. You can put in preferences, but ultimately if they want you as a tower controller at Southampton that's where you're going regardless of where the rest of your family is. The majority of people will either end up at Swanwick or Prestwick though as that's where they have the most controllers and obviously need the most too. Again, there's little choice - it'll be where the business needs you.

In terms of annual increments, it depends on where you are. They all start around the £40k mark and go up from there. Working at the busier units will leave you on well over £100k by the time you reach the top of the pay scale
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Old 7th Jul 2023, 21:05
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Originally Posted by The Many Tentacles
You're on the training salary until you arrive at a unit. Then, if I remember correctly and I'm prepared to be wrong on this, you lose the living allowance, but you gain the anti-social hours payment which is very similar to the living allowance. Your salary does go up by a few thousand too. However, it's unlikely that your college journey would be smooth. You may well fail a stage or end up holding whilst the course ahead of you finishes their course and then your 9 months at the college is suddenly 12 or longer.

Regarding location, you can be sent wherever the company needs you. You can put in preferences, but ultimately if they want you as a tower controller at Southampton that's where you're going regardless of where the rest of your family is. The majority of people will either end up at Swanwick or Prestwick though as that's where they have the most controllers and obviously need the most too. Again, there's little choice - it'll be where the business needs you.

In terms of annual increments, it depends on where you are. They all start around the £40k mark and go up from there. Working at the busier units will leave you on well over £100k by the time you reach the top of the pay scale
Thanks for taking the time to reply - much appreciated!
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Old 17th Jul 2023, 10:32
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Group discussion?

Hi all.

Thanks for all the above info so far.

I was wondering if someone who has attended recently may be able to shed some more light on the day?

Considering it's being run via teams I was wondering how the group discussion went? I think we can all agree the natural nuisances of conversation are difficult to replicate through a video call - so I'd be interested to know how this went for those who have taken part?

Any surprising questions in the competency based interview? Or is it very much the standard "tell me a time you have demonstrated X Y or Z"

Also, Is the Nats quiz from the study material provided multiple choice?

Cheers and best of luck to all
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Old 18th Jul 2023, 15:23
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Hi,

I'm just starting my research into this career and have struggled to find the answer to two key questions. I've tried to search the NATS website as well as this form and Reddit, but while these question has been asked, the answers are either out of date or vague.

My first question is about the salary. A normally taboo subject but in this new modern world, a very important problem to discuss. In my research, I've found that NATS has different salary ranges for being stationed at different airports. They seemed to call these bands. Is this still how it operates? If so, can you share updated ranges and what airports belong to which band? If you are at an airport that ranges from 40k-80k, how long does it take to achieve 80k? Is this usually a promotion to a different role or is this just pay for experience? If I was working at Cardiff as an Aerodrome Controller for 4 years, how much should I be making? The answers I've usually seen to salary questions are, the salary "good"/"great" but these mean something different to everyone. So a really detail answer would be appreciated. I know some people don't like to talk openly about their salary so I completely understand if you don't want to do this openly. I'm new to this form but I assume it has private message features.

My second question is about the type of controller you wish to become. My research seems to suggest you are just assigned with your preference not even taken into consideration. Is this true? If, for instance, you wanted to become an Aerodrome Controller but you were assigned to be an Area Controller, and someone else wished to be an Area Controller but they were assigned to be an Aerodrome Controller, doesn't that seem silly? Some explanation on this would be great. As at the moment, it seems there is a possibility for some to be very unhappy in their role. Also, if you wanted to switch the type of controller you are, could you? Or would this require retraining which NATS are unlikely to offer?

A further question I had while typing this is, how easy is it to switch between airports? Let's say you are assigned to Cardiff, is it possible to move to Manchester? If so, how is the process?

Thanks to anyone who answers. If you have already seen these answered, please post a link to the information. I know some might say to apply first, pass the assessments, then worry about these questions. But, the training is a large commitment. I would rather know now that I 100% want to do it than train for 2 years and realize I get paid less for more work; though, probably more interesting.
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Old 20th Jul 2023, 16:35
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Originally Posted by bajanelite123
Hi,

I'm just starting my research into this career and have struggled to find the answer to two key questions. I've tried to search the NATS website as well as this form and Reddit, but while these question has been asked, the answers are either out of date or vague.

My first question is about the salary. A normally taboo subject but in this new modern world, a very important problem to discuss. In my research, I've found that NATS has different salary ranges for being stationed at different airports. They seemed to call these bands. Is this still how it operates? If so, can you share updated ranges and what airports belong to which band? If you are at an airport that ranges from 40k-80k, how long does it take to achieve 80k? Is this usually a promotion to a different role or is this just pay for experience? If I was working at Cardiff as an Aerodrome Controller for 4 years, how much should I be making? The answers I've usually seen to salary questions are, the salary "good"/"great" but these mean something different to everyone. So a really detail answer would be appreciated. I know some people don't like to talk openly about their salary so I completely understand if you don't want to do this openly. I'm new to this form but I assume it has private message features.

My second question is about the type of controller you wish to become. My research seems to suggest you are just assigned with your preference not even taken into consideration. Is this true? If, for instance, you wanted to become an Aerodrome Controller but you were assigned to be an Area Controller, and someone else wished to be an Area Controller but they were assigned to be an Aerodrome Controller, doesn't that seem silly? Some explanation on this would be great. As at the moment, it seems there is a possibility for some to be very unhappy in their role. Also, if you wanted to switch the type of controller you are, could you? Or would this require retraining which NATS are unlikely to offer?

A further question I had while typing this is, how easy is it to switch between airports? Let's say you are assigned to Cardiff, is it possible to move to Manchester? If so, how is the process?

Thanks to anyone who answers. If you have already seen these answered, please post a link to the information. I know some might say to apply first, pass the assessments, then worry about these questions. But, the training is a large commitment. I would rather know now that I 100% want to do it than train for 2 years and realize I get paid less for more work; though, probably more interesting.

You might be hard pressed to find many people willing to openly share the pay scales. Essentially youíd look at about 10 years from bottom to top. This is based on experience however there are options for promotions which could increase salary.

Salary isnít the end of the story though, thereís shift pay, ojti pay and overtime too. Even in a unit on the lowest scale (NERL & NSL only) you could probably hit the 6 figure mark without any promotions.

Regarding type of controller, you will ultimately end up where the business want you doing what they choose. Preferences may be taken into account and with the huge amount of courses being run in the next few years you might be luckier in that sense compared to previous years as thereís more space to put people.

That being said though while Iíve met many controllers who ended up somewhere they didnít plan doing a type of controlling they wouldnít have initially picked, Iíve yet to meet someone who wishes they didnít pursue the job based on this.

Retraining paid for by NATS is very unlikely. Transferring isnít too difficult however it can take some time if the unit you want to move to is over staffed or in demand already.
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