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Virgin recruiting soon...

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Virgin recruiting soon...

Old 30th Oct 2014, 23:36
  #721 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: On the road
Posts: 159
How would you suggest that "these cadets" find a way into this industry? It is not their intention to undercut other pilots but they know just as you know, it is their only way in.

I'm not fully in the know, so forgive this question but, why are there so many experienced commercial airline pilots out of work?
You talk as if "these cadets" have a heaven sent right to get into the job. They don't, anymore than people in the job have a right either.

You ask how they should get into the industry? Well here's a thought, how about sucking it up buttercup, graft and work your way up. Oh too late. That question should've been asked years ago, and guess what?! You cant do that now.

Back when PPRuNe was full of sensible advice to the odd (back then) idiot who wanted to get a big loan and join this new fangled airline placement scheme. "no!" said everyone, work hard, save up, do it in modules and get a turboprop job and do it the hard way, it'll pay off. It went wrong when the first person turned their cheek on the hard way and signed up to the short cut. No turning back now. Damn mess of this industry in the UK has been caused by CTC and the impatience of trainee pilots with egos and self righteousness bigger than Jupiter. Oh well, impatience and access to credit were always the undoing of society.
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Old 30th Oct 2014, 23:54
  #722 (permalink)  
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With seemingly more and more UK airlines using CTC as their source of new recruits it is only going to get harder and harder to change airlines. When they all use CTC you will effectively be stuck in the airline you first get into because all the other airlines will only want a new batch of 21yr old CTC cadets. Slightly ironic that a CTC student ends up stuck in a job thats not what they want but are prevented from moving by CTC cadets. Sadly those with big cheque books have screwed this industry.
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 00:14
  #723 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2010
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I have no problem with people aspiring to become pilots, I just feel its unfair for their ambition to come at the expense of every professional currently in the industry.

You obviously disagree, I hope you never find yourself unemployed and unable to find work because all the jobs have been taken by cheep students.
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 07:17
  #724 (permalink)  
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Only on PPRuNe would you find pilots bemoaning the introduction of a competitive recruitment scheme based upon ability where the airline is paying for it.
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 07:25
  #725 (permalink)  
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Tourist, VA are not paying for this. The cadet stumps up £109k. Both VA and the cadet will get a tax advantage by pretending the £109k is a bond, but be under no illusion, it is the cadet who is paying for his/her training.
Artie Fufkin is offline  
Old 31st Oct 2014, 07:47
  #726 (permalink)  
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Is that a fact or speculation?

I was under the impression that VA were paying (slightly offset by a pay reduction for a few years, but not by any means covering the cost )
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 07:55
  #727 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2007
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I was under the impression that VA were paying
Is that a fact or speculation?

If you had to pay £109k up front, and have this returned in lieu of part of your salary over 9 years, would you think that you or VA had paid?
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 08:30
  #728 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Crawley
Age: 50
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You make a good point, there is place in all airlines for a scheme that you outline.

But I suppose the big question is.... does every airlines scheme have to be run by the same FTO

Taking all things into consideration regarding the "advantages" of using company "a" and we have heard a whole host of reasons trotted out over the years as a suitable rationale, "one stop training" "structured training program" "better product than your average pilot" etc etc meanwhile back on the line the every day joes have seen with their own eyes these guys are split into the same proportions of skygod/average/numpty as those from other training routes

For me something doesnt stack up to why one company can secure such an incredible market share.

I have to say from my own standpoint Superpilot is on the money with the post above. The important points the restriction of opportunities for experienced pilots, the lowering of ts and cs for all by the flooding of the lower echelons of the recruitment pyramid with the product from company "a"

All that said, I also believe there is a place for cadets in every airline, albiet in the right percentage compared to other recruitment streams. It may be true that Virgin actually have this percentage correct, and the negativity on this thread is fuelled by the over use of company " a" elsewhere in the industry.

Maybe a company "a" thread would be better to allow this one to get back on track
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 08:40
  #729 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2007
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1. CTC course costs; £109k.

2. Cadet pays £109k “bond” to Virgin Atlantic.

3. Virgin Atlantic pays course cost of £109k to CTC.

4. Virgin “return bond” to cadet over a 9 year period. Virgin Atlantic simultaneously reduces cadet’s salary by a “coincidentally similar” amount to the bond.

Who paid for the course?

Disclaimer… back of fag packet calculations

Virgin’s cost reductions;
VAT reclaim; up to £21,800
Corporation tax reduction; £22,890
NIC reduction over 9 years; £15,152
VA’s reduced tax liabilities over bond period; up to £59,842

Cadet’s liabilities and savings;
Cadet’s NIC & income tax saving over bond period; up to 56,680
Loss of earnings over 9 years; £109k
Cost of interest on loan (estimated); £21,800
Net cost to cadet £74,120

Don’t try and make VA sound benevolent.
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 08:44
  #730 (permalink)  
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Artie, neither fact or speculation, merely the impression I was given.

If it is the case that the cadet ends up paying the full cost then yes, the deal is nothing like as good.
The only good bit left is the selection on merit, plus I suppose the job at the end.
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 08:49
  #731 (permalink)  
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Never tried to make out they are benevolent, but any deal that gets a pilot a free(or greatly reduced training costs) license plus gets the airline pilots selected by ability should be applauded.

Three Lions

I have not time for CTC either. Vastly overpriced but that is a different argument.
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 11:38
  #732 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2006
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Tourist. You must believe everything then that the Daily Mail writes in its wonderful prose.

I find it ludicrous and my fellow aviators who have wracked up the mileage will agree with me; that VS is feeling utterly benevolent to brand new shiny just been born aviators and willing to give them 109k licence free of charge. However ctc and VS have thrashed out their deal, those guys and gals who get taken on will be paying for their licence in some shape or form. And it WILL cost more (to the cadet not VS) than recruiting a Non Typed guy or gal from the street.

Sure its nice to bring in youngsters into aviation. But whats the problem with taking on the people from the likes of Eastern, Flybe, Regional and others. The problem is the cost, the money and what the accountants are agreeing. It isn't about being nice and touchy feely with the bearded one.

The thread is diverting away from the theme a bit. But this just goes to show how PPRuNe and the industry are swimming around in the basin with a lot of floating debris.
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Old 31st Oct 2014, 12:24
  #733 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2013
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Posts: 142
Good post JB. With this new approach by VS to fill the RHS will we see them drop the weight requirement for any future DEP recruitment. You can't argue the need to have flown a bus or Boeing with a certain minimum weight limit if you have 12 or so CTC cadets a year on the A330. But of course it's their train set!!!! I for one would love to have a shot at VS. what's the feeling within the Virgin pilot community about this? Trainers are going to have a more testing time on the line.
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Old 1st Nov 2014, 14:44
  #734 (permalink)  
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Let's hope no one takes it out on the new cadets who eventually get the job. It's not their fault, it's a few bean counters at VA. If I'd been offered that opportunity when I started my career I would have jumped at it - who wouldn't!

Don't get me wrong thought, I'm not exactly in agreement with it. I've been sitting with around 4-5k hours all Boeing rated, over 100 tonnes waiting for VA to start recruiment for that category. I was expecting it after the Airbus recruitment but didn't allow for Military > 100 tonnes that was created to help a few of the ex Tri-Star guys out! Still, at least BA have now done so!
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Old 1st Nov 2014, 15:12
  #735 (permalink)  

Champagne anyone...?
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What's the feeling within the Virgin pilot community about this?
Personally I'm fairly sanguine about it. I don't see the hold pool drying up, recruitment stopping forever or western civilisation collapsing over the decision to recruit 10 or so cadets who won't actually hit the line for another 2 or 3 years hence. In the meantime you have a predominantly middle to late-middle aged demographic with the 65yrs old retirement bubble looming in a few years. All things being equal then, we're going to see increased retirements, reduced times to command and an ongoing need to recruit experienced pilots into the company. A trickle of cadets will serve to smooth out the demographic somewhat in the future but won't cause the rending asunder of the space/time continuum that some of the posters on here are speculating it will.

You can guarantee that there are all manner of tax breaks, incentives and deals are being achieved by both CTC and VAA. As VAA puts in place many initiatives to bring the company back into profit it certainly isn't going to start benevolently lobbing money at prospective aviators. Whilst I personally dislike the MPL concept I think the VAA scheme offers more over others. VAA being who they are will make the trainees feel part of the company from the outset (an intangible aspect I'll agree but important one nonetheless) through things like supernumerary flights, cadet liaison line pilots and immersion in VAA SOPs etc from an early stage.

As for the cost, well it is what it is. As stated, VAA aren't going to throw £1M at 10 unknowns in the hope of getting some pilots a few years down the line. So the cost is borne by the trainees. Personally I would've like to have seen VAA at least assist in securing the finance - some sort of link up with Virgin Money would've looked good (rather than the dubious looking Banquõs Del Récessiōn featured on the CTC site).
However, If a financial giant like BA want £84k for their Future Pilot Scheme you can't be surprised that VAA expect similar funding requirements.

Notwithstanding the general failings of the Zero to Hero MPL course, there isn't a shortage of pilots out there and Virgin isn't reliant on these cadets getting through to support the business. The desire to achieve, do well and pass the course must therefore driven by the students themselves, safe in the knowledge that if they don't put the effort in they fail and they personally are out of pocket to the tune of £LOTS. It's not like joining the Air Force, getting halfway through training before deciding you don't really like flying and then dropping out with no financial penalty. Any airline that doesn't own it's own training school needs to protect itself from the vagaries and potential financial losses of sponsoring ab initio pilot training.

When these cadets fall out of the machine at the far end they become long haul Line FOs. I have absolutely no idea what the pay scheme will be. However it works out, the new pilot will be on a decent wage (commensurate with experience), flying long haul around the world, on track to a long haul command with a great company at a relatively young age.

Yes you can drill down into the figures and work out quite how CTC and VAA are saving on NI costs or tax breaks or whatever. Airlines are businesses not charities and they would be mugs not to be using the system to minimise costs/maximise costs wherever they can. Your current employer is probably/definitely doing it to you right now.

As for ongoing recruitment, the Virgin Training Standards Manager has already outlined Virgin's needs in an earlier post. The longstanding recruitment requirements of 3000hrs etc etc won't change. Those requirements work and produce the candidates that the company want. Yes some might perceive it as "unfair"; lots of things in life are "unfair" including Airline recruitment which is based on 30% qualifications/suitability and 70% luck and right place/right time. I thought it was very unfair when Virgin didn't interview when I first applied. I was then very lucky when they did a year later. Not much changed in the intervening time other my amount of luck.

Whether or not those currently in the hold pool get offered a job I can't say. I spent a long time in the VAA hold pool before I was offered a job and I really hope those that are currently "swimming" get offered a course in a due time. If they do or don't will have absolutely and categorically nothing to do with cadets and everything to do with 787 training needs, Airbus vacancies, route changes, 747 drawdown/base moves and planning needs for the 744 replacement (777/A350/???).

On balance I think this is a half decent scheme and one that offers superb opportunities to a few budding young aviators. Yes it's expensive which is self-selecting in itself; I would've liked to have seen more indirect financial support from VAA to enable the widest spectrum of people to apply. Yes it'll be a burden on the trainers in the future but not, I believe, an intolerable one. And no, no-one will "take it out" on them when they reach the line (whatever "it" is). That's not really how we do things.

Interesting times and good luck to those applying - see you downroute in a few years' time.

Last edited by StopStart; 2nd Nov 2014 at 13:27. Reason: Removed my thoughts on potential wages. I have no inside info but don't want to cause confusion through my own supposition.
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Old 1st Nov 2014, 18:53
  #736 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2008
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What a fantastic scheme this is !

Virgin will get some great tax/NI breaks whilst the cadet will get to jump
straight in to flying Heavy Metal, get Tax/NI breaks plus get a good salary and is on the path to getting a long haul Command with a legacy carrier.

Ok perhaps these 10 cadet positions could have gone to people with say experience or living out in Middle East but that's not the case.

Too many people on here hate the player and not the game!

Things have changed and for the time being CTC are here to stay and there's nothing we can do about it so get over it !!!
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Old 1st Nov 2014, 19:36
  #737 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2011
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Posts: 277
Great post stopstart, nice to see a balanced view for once Does anyone on the inside know any more about CTC's claims of Virgin backed loans for a select few candidates? Their website says,

"It may also be possible for Virgin Atlantic to act as bank loan guarantors for a small number of successful candidates if required. Therefore, this programme offers an opportunity for everyone, including the most exceptional candidates with potentially limited financial resource."

This is a very vague statement. It seems to suggest Virgin would guarantee your loan if you didn't have access to funding, but only if you were 'exceptional'. Is this more exceptional than what is required to pass selection? It' an odd position for the airline to be getting into if they start saying "you're not good enough for us to act as a guarantor but we'll still hire you if you can pay".

Other than that, I'd be intirgued to know what Virgin's plans for the A330 are. I understand they're leased, but is the long-term plan to keep them? Are the primarily going to be doing East-coast US whilst the 787s do the longer flights?
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Old 1st Nov 2014, 20:11
  #738 (permalink)  
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StopStart and anyone else that may be interested; starting salary for new cadets is £26k (+bond repayment).
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Old 1st Nov 2014, 21:16
  #739 (permalink)  
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Twenty Six?!
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Old 1st Nov 2014, 22:26
  #740 (permalink)  

Champagne anyone...?
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: EGDL
Age: 50
Posts: 1,408
thowmas - like I said, I have no idea what the salary will be. £26k isn't great however add the £14.5k flight pay to that + the £15.5k bond repayment + £6kpa allowances makes a not insignificant amount.
Interested (in inverted commas) to know where you got that figure from though....
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