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Will the bottom of the barrel ever be scraped for pilots in the future?

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Will the bottom of the barrel ever be scraped for pilots in the future?

Old 24th Jun 2008, 18:26
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Will the bottom of the barrel ever be scraped for pilots in the future?

Let's say when the aviation industry goes on the cyclical upswing (perhaps in the next millenium or so), I am sure it will meet a surplus of experienced, and newly qualified commercial pilots.

When it does go in an upswing, even with all the pilots that will be available do you think it will come to a point where airlines worldwide would literally scrape the bottom of the barrel for pilots for their fleets?

Experienced airmen please reply from your past experience. But then again, is it worth the while comparing the present time (oil etc) with the past?

Toujours
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Old 24th Jun 2008, 18:36
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There won't be pilots in the next millenium.
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Old 24th Jun 2008, 18:54
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If they scrape the bottom of the barrel, they won't have a fleet for very long! Seems like a really strange question to ask. Do you feel that your only shot at a job is if they scrape bottom?
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Old 25th Jun 2008, 09:43
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What ability do you need to be an airline pilot?
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Old 25th Jun 2008, 16:07
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wrt experienced pilots, there's no question we are back on a downturn after several exceptional years. Over the last 12-18 months I am sure some airlines were taking "experienced" pilots on who in normal circumstances they wouldn't touch with a bargepole, plus some sectors eg; experienced TRI/TREs were very hard to find, and some were making ridiculous money with airlines fighting for their services.

There always seems to be a surplus of newbie low hours pilots who, lemming-like, march on to their "destiny" (be it the 50% who get a commercial job or the other 50%), ignoring economic and airline reality. If you look at India recently which was effectively closed to foreign F/Os, within an incredibly short time there is a massive overload of Indian wannabees (many badly trained) fighting with each other to get into the right hand seat. Some of them were saying to me 2 years ago that there was "no way" they would start flying an ATR, they only wanted a jet job when they finished training.

There is the odd country like the former USSR where there is a chronic shortage of local pilots through specific circumstances, but it's very much the exception.
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Old 25th Jun 2008, 21:22
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Originally Posted by djfingerscrossed
Why the hell is there still this arrogance over jet jobs?
Money and status probably. But I agree...TP or desk...difficult choice.
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Old 25th Jun 2008, 21:34
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DJ,

Money for large loan payments probably, or else it has more to do with lust than disrespect. Daft nonetheless though.

Regarding Russia, there is an article in a recent Flight International saying the Russian state flying school is modifying their course to meet the high demand sooner. They are reducing the theory from 5 to 4 years and the flying to 18 months. All I can deduce from this is that the theory must be either high school starting with 14 year olds or it includes a university degree. It's probably a training system held over from the Soviet Union days.
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Old 25th Jun 2008, 22:27
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Toujours, don't believe the flying schools! After 20 years in aviation I have concluded that there has never been a shortage of pilots, and there never will be a shortage of pilots. And aviation will not grow exponentially forever. End of story.
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Old 27th Jun 2008, 10:23
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Mercenary Pilot,

Your comments are not justified. A lot of good pilots nowadays need to pay for their type rating to get onto the job ladder and even in some cases pay for some line training.

Just because people pay for their ratings does'nt mean they are bad pilots or at the bottom of the barrel. If you don't pass an interview or sim ride does'nt make you a bad pilot.

In my opinion, a good pilot is someone who does'nt give up and keeps going inspite of all comments and negative attitudes towards them.

Some people are very lucky in getting sponsorship or being at the right place at the right time.

I myself, like a great deal of my friends are Ex-Military.

Because we paid for are ratings and had low commercial hours, does that mean we are bad pilots???

Would you feel that we would be a danger because of our low hours??

Have you ever experienced real danger?

Besides having a good CV and experience in avaition, the airlines wanted us to be type rated. Granted BA is different.

Yes, we paid for our ratings and got the job.

People have a choice, wait for something to fall in their lap or take the initative and increase the chances of success.

Not the way I wanted to do it, but the outcome was worth it.

I agree this is'nt how it should be. Airlines should be investing in their future and their pilots.

Bigfoot
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Old 27th Jun 2008, 12:58
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djfingerscrossed,

So, because somebody failed an interview due to nerves, pressure etcetera it means they should try to circumnavigate sim-checks, psychometric tests and just attempt to buy their way into the job?

BUT remember we all go through failures like these in life. It's what helps mold our characters so that we don't crumble under pressure next time.
So true, and in my experience its the ones who slog it out and who keep battling that turn out to be the best pilots.

Bigfoot

My comments are more than justified! Please don't get my views confused between paying for a type rating and paying an airline to sit in the RHS to build up a few hours in the expectation of getting hired somewhere else. I don't have a problem with pilots paying for a type rating (although 200 hr pilots should be made aware that it doesn't really make them that much more employable in the majority of cases).

I do have a problem with people paying an airline to build hours! These people take away jobs and money from decent professional pilots and the only real qualification is a fat wallet. Some airlines don't seem to realise it yet, but it WILL bite them in the ass!

Would you feel that we would be a danger because of our low hours??
Everybody has to start somewhere but while you are low houred you do present a risk. That is why experience and training is so important.

Airlines who are involved with these "pay to play" schemes are continuously keeping a low level of experience on the right hand side of the flight deck, this IS a flight safety risk!

Have you ever experienced real danger?
Seriously, what has that got to do with anything?


regards


MP


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Old 25th Jul 2008, 02:31
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Angel Mercenary Pilot did you have a bad day?

MP you talk utter sh1t. I and plenty of other ex military pilots spent at least a couple of years trying to get real employment (I am NOT counting the full time FI jobs that I did whilst I waited). I have ex colleagues spread across the industry. Some with BA some who 5 years since leaving (with over 1500hrs) still have not gotten that first interview!

Were they bad pilots, no one ever bothered to find out. I like most at FR paid for my own TR and have never looked back. I've met pilots here who are so scary that I do not understand how they are allowed to be on their own in a cockpit and others who make me realize how much I still have to learn with more or less hours than me. Why? Simply because the only selection criteria is money or luck not ability? Do I agree with this no, but hey I didn't decide that it should no longer be a meritocracy. The accountants did.

I did not SSTR to circumvent test or selections. I did it because I have a mortgage to pay and a family to feed.

I have never failed any selection military or civil and have been offered every single job that I have been interviewed for.

The problem for me like many was simply that you do not get invited to interviews/selections as many firms out there would rather interview a 250hr Integrated student aged 25 and three quarters.

It is nothing to do with ability your comments show nothing more than your lack of knowledge about the struggle that some pilots face to get an interview. Getting jobs is easy, getting interviews was by far the hardest thing. I really do wish that this game was a meritocracy and pilots were selected purely on ability but that is about as likely as seeing oil go down to less than $100 a barrel by Xmas.

If you have written your comments as anything other than a wind up then you are either deluded or clearly have little knowledge on the realities of the recruitment cycle in aviation as it currently stands (from the point of view of a low hour pilot i.e. less than 2000hrs)

VT
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 10:24
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A while back, I met one of those Eagle Jet 'FOs' who was paying for the privilege of flying for Royal Air Maroc. He was positively dripping with bitterness at the injustice of it all, but that hadn't stopped him shelling out to hours build in a 737.

To put it very mildly indeed, he didn't come across as someone you'd want to be locked in a flightdeck with for hours on end. Which may explain why he was having to buy his way into a right hand seat - in 2007, at the peak of the job market.

As MP says, there is a world of difference between self-funding a type rating (wrong though that is) and depriving a professional first officer of work by paying to do his job.
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 12:38
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Angel Ppl, Cpl, Me IR, MCC, B737, mission creep yes but that is the market!

Okay this may put me further infront of the firing line but.......

Yes I do clearly see the difference between SSTR and paying for line training but unfortunately the airlines don't. I actually advocate paying for all the above. If the Ts&Cs slip for everyone else then that is market forces dictating that that is where the industry is.

Do you not think that the coalminers, shipbuilders, weavers, seamstresses and cotton pickers of yesteryear did not have a time when their trade (I specifically did not say profession, another thread methinks...) lamented the destruction of their Ts&Cs.

The reason for the need to SSTR is no different for the reason to pay for line training. It is simply because right now if you do not pay for it you will not get a job unless you are very lucky as it is not a meritocracy. If you do not have 500hrs plus on type there are hardly any jobs available to you. So after having SSTR'd you then HAVE to pay for line training as if you do not you stay unemployed.

This is sad, this is wrong but this is still reality whilst airlines still refuse to invest the money in actually selecting pilots properly and taking the best applicants the selection criteria remains disposable cash.

Do I see where this leads, absolutely but if that means that I have to pay for my own command assessment, pay for my own uniform, pay for my own car parking, pay for my food at work, loose my generous pension, etc, etc then that is life I would do and fly a B737 from the left hand seat for 50k a year if thats what it paid because I want the job more than the Ts&Cs. If you are not prepared to do the same then perhaps I just want it more than you.

Just because I have sacrificed and paid 80k to get where I am just not mean that I should now sit back and reap the rewards. I love flying and if I can earn a living do it then that is a bonus. Those who don't like it talk to their managers and shareholders. Would I like the days of earning 100k and a job at BA for all who met the grade, yep but they are soon to be the days of history. Today you get ahead by selling your soul, I remortgaged the family home to be where I am and if you think that is too great a sacrifice well unlucky I don't and there are plenty more where I came from. Why do you all believe that you should have your dream job in a highly competitive market and also earn more than a lawyer, accountant or dentist.

You get what the market can afford, deal with it and enjoy the flying and Ts&Cs as they are if they change reassess. If you decide it is no longer viable then tell me, I and my generation will do your job for less and you can go and do something else in an industry that works the way you dream it should rather than one controlled by the reality of market forces.

Supply and demand is really simple, market forces demand that I do it for less and less. I supply it until I can no longer support my family and if I get driven out of the industry by the decreasing Ts&Cs because some one wants it even more than me then the world doesn't owe me a living......

VT

Last edited by Vortex Thing; 25th Jul 2008 at 12:52.
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 14:39
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I wonder where the ever raising "standard" requirements will stop?

First it was the MCC, then the SSTR, now line training. The problem is that the more that wannabes shell out for these extras, the higher the bar to entry gets raised. Now this notion of needing 500 hours of line time crops up. The faster they run, the faster the hare goes.

Someone will come up with a scheme to get you 500 hours of line time. In response, airlines will want an unfrozen ATP, so then someone comes up with another scheme...

I can't see it going on for ever though. Like a few other folks, I sadly foresee an incident at some point in the not too distant future where these pay to play schemes will be thrust into the forefront of public discussion and maybe, just maybe, this progression of scheme/countermeasure will be curtailed.

How about this for a future advertising slogan - "All of our flight crew are paid professionals"?

That said, I should add I'm not trying to put these folks down. I just despise that this is creating an industry where the barrier to entry is based on money rather than aptitude.
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 15:01
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Oh and it will happen. The public outcry as to why the pilot wasnt an employee of the airline, paying to have a shot of the plane etc etc. You can see the media headlines already. Irrespective whether the pilot had a TR, or had absolutely no blame for the accident...the media will have their frenzy!
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 15:13
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Do I see where this leads, absolutely but if that means that I have to pay for my own command assessment, pay for my own uniform, pay for my own car parking, pay for my food at work, loose my generous pension, etc, etc then that is life I would do and fly a B737 from the left hand seat for 50k a year if thats what it paid because I want the job more than the Ts&Cs. If you are not prepared to do the same then perhaps I just want it more than you.
VT

So to paraphrase, we all have to accept our terms and conditions being eroded because some people behind us are prepared to do anything to undercut us - because they 'want it more'? Do you really see where this leads? I can guarantee someone behind you will feel exactly the same way about undercutting you, because he really really wants the job - even more than you. A never ending downward spiral.

People reading this thread could be forgiven for thinking that the only way into an airliner is to buy a type rating and 250 hours on type. It isn't, and the vast majority of airline pilots don't have to.
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 15:24
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VT you make me sick.

That is all.
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 16:01
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Angel Here here EGHH.

EGHH it is a shame indeed it just seems such a great shame that airlines refuse to invest enough money in their HR process to actually select people on pure ability and suitability for the job rather than just how much money they can raise.

GSXTY Sorry that was my intention! People reading this SHOULD think that the only way into an airliner (N.B. For a First proper Job) IS to buy a TR and line training. If it isn't perhaps you could enlighten us on who will interview you without those hours on type or with a TR as they appear to be hiding themselves well.

I am not even referring to just the UK. I for one was willing to go anywhere in the world for any salary as long as it flew I would have done it I applied to literally hundreds of SEP and MEP operators and could not so much of get a sniff at a PA31 or PA34 job. I tried email, letters, visits anything to get an interview for years whilst instructing full time and keeping as current as I could. The old favourites being "oh but you did modular", "oh but you have a good CV and are likely to get a job somewhere else soon" and even "Oh but you're OVERQUALIFIED!!!".

From the turbo prop operators such as Eastern, Highland, Flybe, etc I still await even an acknowledgment that they had received my applications over the last 5 years.(Admittedly Flybe do send a standard email) I am not asking for responses to blindly sent CVs I mean in response to application forms filled in for advertised jobs!!

I spoke to heads of sheds of Flybe, Eastern, Highland during many BALPA EOCs and even at thier HQs in person. They would say send me your CV or take my CV and say "You are definitely the type of guy I am looking for with the right experience, there is no reason why we would not interview you." I would send a follow up email, with another CV and then there would always be some reason why they had to take just 2 or 3 other guys with 250hrs from Oxford or Cabair but they would never actually get you in interview you or assess you against them.

Someone reading YOUR email would believe that if they had a natural ability and passed a good academic CV, rounded and diverse experience across all spectra of business and aviation that they could apply to an airline, get asked to come in for interview, prove their ability and suitability via a barrage of psychometric tests, interviews and sim checks and get the job because they were better than the other people who applied or met the required standard.

The fact is that it just doesn't happen that way until you are making the move from your first into your second airline with 500 plus hours on turbos or jets in my case. Now airlines write back to me, then I may as well have not existed...

I agree that this is bad, even disgusting but I did not make the industry this way, the senior management & senior pilots out there who choose to refuse to recruit in a meritocratic way at the 1st level are the ones who drive this, why well because if they didn't then the chances are their airlines would find someone else who did! Even when you are CEO you answer to the shareholders.

VT

Disgusting situation yes but please direct the disgust at the powers that be that point blank refuse to let this be a meritocracy
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 16:06
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Angel Is that it Tupes. Good counter argument shall use it in a CRM lecture

Is that it Tupes. Are you not even going to say why? Is it because I tell the truth how it is or because your Ts&Cs are being eroded.

Before you answer, if you have the gall this time rather than just sniping a comment and coming back with no substance.

How have I caused the situation to be how it is? Why do your family have more of a right than mine to be fed and have a roof over their heads?

I'd love to know?
VT
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Old 25th Jul 2008, 16:17
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GSXTY Sorry that was my intention! People reading this SHOULD think that the only way into an airliner (N.B. For a First proper Job) IS to buy a TR and line training. If it isn't perhaps you could enlighten us on who will interview you without those hours on type or with a TR as they appear to be hiding themselves well.
But that's incorrect, it isn't the only way at all. Where all this has come from that you have to pay to fly just to get a job I don't know, thousands before you didn't lower themselves to that, so why should the people coming through now have to do it?

Interested to know your logic when you say that you want it more than others because you're willing to be raped to fly.
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