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BA Direct Entry Pilot.

Old 7th Feb 2016, 11:38
  #2581 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: france
Posts: 106
That's the problem....it would be more than 600 words!
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Old 7th Feb 2016, 11:39
  #2582 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: uk
Posts: 28
Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
Can't comment on Carmen, all I know is it is proposed we adopt a bespoke version of this:


http://ww1.jeppesen.com/documents/av...0eBrochure.pdf

I believe some have been quite impressed having "attended" Webinars on the subject given by BALPA, and some of the more junior are singing it's praises, but my eyes were drawn to this in the brochure:

Thanks for that. An interesting read for a new joiner.
My immediate concern is being able to have some control over where days off fall, rather than individual trips (though I'm sure I'd develop a preference for east/west, trip length etc). As you will no longer be bidding for a line, do you think you will be able to bid for days off as well as trips? My understanding of the existing and proposed systems is fairly basic.
P0tt3r is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 13:27
  #2583 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Amity Island
Age: 39
Posts: 63
LFRK .....

Here are my essay answers from nearly 10 years ago. Obviously the subject matter is a little dated now but it worked for me.

Don't fret over English not being your first language, I'm confident the recruitment team will take this into account. Good luck.

CB

--------

1) Why would you like to join BA as a pilot and how can you contribute

As a member of the travelling public whenever I think of British Airways, excellent customer service and the very highest of safety standards always come to mind. That said, as a pilot I recognise that these are consistently achieved because of the world class training crews receive at BA.


Believing sincerely in the above values and fully understanding how important training is, I feel I could reach my fullest potential were I given the opportunity to work for British Airways. My contribution would be to represent all that the company stands for - safety, quality, efficiency, loyalty - demonstrating the highest professional standards, each day, every day.


2) Give an example in your current role of when you have made an important decision. Consider the sources of information, how you prioritised and the final outcome.


Our duty involved two round trips to Manchester from Southampton. There was widespread fog and our allocated aircraft had no automatic pressurisation as well as a permanent fuselage door warning (defects were MEL acceptable). In manual pressurisation mode the workload is extremely high especially on routes where the cruise phase accounts for a small percentage of the flight time. This particular duty also involved crossing some of the busiest airspace in the world - four times, all with bad weather and the doors warning constantly on our minds -it is fair to say that I was feeling uncomfortable about the developing situation. Given all the information available as well as the safe conduct of the flight being our main priority I expressed to the captain that I would be much happier were the company to re-file us as FL80 - allowing us to fly unpressurised and allowing both of out attentions to concentrate on spacial awareness, ATC compliance and gathering MET information en-route. I thought conveying this to the captain was an important decision - a line of thought he too had been thinking along and ultimately flying at FL80 is what we did.


3) Give an eample of when you have been involved in a major change in the work environment. How did you adapt to this and what did you learn from it.


The integrating of Connect into Flybe was a major change in the work environment for all employees. For a while afterwards there were occasions when the atmosphere in the joint crewrooms became quite sour as hardliners from both sides made their respective thoughts known. As a very junior first officer I had not experienced a merger/takeover before and the subsequent period while things settled. In terms of how I adapted the truth was I had not been with Flybe very long when it all happened and was still in an adaptive frame of mind anyway, this was just one more thing to get use to. I knew the situation would calm down and as somebody who via my staff number could be recognised instantly as 'original Flybe' I made a point of being as congenial as possible when interacting or rostered with new colleagues. There were of course occasions when people were curt and it is from these times that I learnt that some people take longer to come round than others, some never do and really all you can do is have patience and understanding and not take it too much to heart.

4) Outline the competition facing BA at present and how in the role of flight crew you can contribute to the overall success of the business.


Low cost carriers are a direct threat to any full service airline serving the same routes in economically uncertain times such as these. Relatively new companies like Oasis and to some extent Zoom are evidence that the LLC might no longer remain simply an intra continental competition phenomenon (like Ryanair) but rather one that starts to appear more and more on transcontinental routes. This coupled with the EU-US Open Skies Agreement means that some very competitive times lie ahead - exacerbated for all concerned by rising fuel costs. Flight crews need to be continually aware that with fuel being the biggest operating cost the aircraft must be flown at its most efficient at every phase of flight and must always work to depart on time keeping in-check those overheads that are directly under their span of control. Flight crew can also contribute by helping to instil and maintain motivation as well as a pro company attitude among the entire crew and as ambassadors of the company project the image of trustworthiness at all times.
Chief Brody is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 14:04
  #2584 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Winchester
Posts: 5,429
As you will no longer be bidding for a line, do you think you will be able to bid for days off as well as trips? My understanding of the existing and proposed systems is fairly basic.

TBH your understanding is probably as good as mine.

I suspect that if JSS is adopted it will be a case of keeping preferences simple and not trying to combine too much, especially whilst junior...I suspect asking for SIN trips only and being home Sat and Sun might not be the best tactic to employ initially....whereas bidding for "any trip, any day" might just work...

Like most things bidding wise I suspect you'll get what you want as long as somebody senior to you doesn't want it........and that ultimately the company will re-jig work and ignore preferences in order to cover the work........
wiggy is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 16:28
  #2585 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: uk
Posts: 28
Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
TBH your understanding is probably as good as mine.

I suspect that if JSS is adopted it will be a case of keeping preferences simple and not trying to combine too much, especially whilst junior
I anticipate being junior on my fleet for quite some time, and as such don't expect to have a huge amount of control over what I do. I was/am hoping to have a chance at influencing my days off though, and in the future, what I do when I do work.

I'm currently a longstanding balpa member at my employer, and likely to stay a member when I move (at least my subs will go down due pay cut), but BA balpa is very much on trial for me. I need to see them benefitting me, and working on my behalf. This feels like a backward step on the face of it.
P0tt3r is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 21:37
  #2586 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Winchester
Posts: 5,429
POtt3r

I anticipate being junior on my fleet for quite some time, and as such don't expect to have a huge amount of control over what I do. I was/am hoping to have a chance at influencing my days off though,
In the interest of managing expectations I'll be brutally honest and say that IMHO even if we stick with Bidline you'll struggle as a Blindline holder to do much influencing of days off, other than perhaps being able to swop after roster publication, if EASA regs allow it. It's been a standing joke for years that pre-ops ("rostering") put Blindline holders preferences forms unread straight into the bin. Might be unfair but it often appears that way.

If you're destined for the 744 they do at least have a seeded trip on their Blindline's so after Stage 1 publication you'll have a trip and associated days off on the line prior to the rest of the line build.... but you have to have the senority in the first place to get the Blindline that gives you the days off you want. The only other option is to bid for a reserve line - that has a block of fixed days off at the start that might be a "fit" with something you need to do...other than that

I have no idea whether there will be any real improvement in control of days off for the junior pilots if we go to JSS....
wiggy is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 21:54
  #2587 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: uk
Posts: 28
Swaps were probably my main hope for controlling days off.
Maybe the new system will be more transparent, and give junior guys a slightly better shot at some form of preference. Who knows.

I'm going on the 380, so the 744 thing you mentioned wouldn't benefit me.

Last edited by P0tt3r; 7th Feb 2016 at 23:26.
P0tt3r is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 21:57
  #2588 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Amity Island
Age: 39
Posts: 63
Wiggy.

Re blindline pref forms going straight in the bin.

I needed to fill one in myself the other month and followed it up with a phone call to pre-ops. I did this to reinforce how important the day off I wanted was (Ellen's birthday). During the conversation I said something slightly disparaging re pref forms and how little sway they seem to have.

The lady on the end took the time to list my last 5 forms submitted (over the course of several years) and read the succinct notes on the screen next to each entry citing why I hadn't got my preference.
Chief Brody is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 22:04
  #2589 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Button Moon
Posts: 300
It's been a standing joke for years that pre-ops ("rostering") put Blindline holders preferences forms unread straight into the bin. Might be unfair but it often appears that way.
I'd go along with that but then Feb was published and all 4 of my preferences were honoured. Buses all coming at once springs to mind.

OpenTime is a fantastic tool, a potential life saver when you're junior on Blind Lines.
2 Whites 2 Reds is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 22:56
  #2590 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: uk
Posts: 28
Is OpenTime a tool for swaps?
P0tt3r is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 23:04
  #2591 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: The Home of the Gnomes
Posts: 363
It's actually called eMaestro but yes, it's a live trip swap/overtime system. There are some restrictions but broadly it's pretty good.
Tay Cough is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 23:17
  #2592 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Button Moon
Posts: 300
Yeah it's a very handy little feature that enables us to view uncovered work and either add it as overtime or swap existing work around. It's brilliant if you're on Blind Lines as it gives you some control over your roster. I use it every month.

Out of interest, does anybody know if JSS (if implemented) will retain this feature?
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Old 7th Feb 2016, 23:19
  #2593 (permalink)  
Junior trash
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 1,025
The 380 is a bit different as the vast majority of trips are 4-5 days with many large time zone changes. This makes blind line holders fairly inefficient so you hopefully won't work too hard.

If you're in the first batch you will rise up the list reasonably quickly as they have released some SFOs to the 320, which wasn't in the original plan. With no more aircraft (yet) planned the fleet has a lot of trainers and not much training come the end of the year.
Hotel Mode is offline  
Old 7th Feb 2016, 23:20
  #2594 (permalink)  
Junior trash
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 1,025
Emaestro or whatever it gets called stays with either system.
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Old 7th Feb 2016, 23:29
  #2595 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: uk
Posts: 28
Originally Posted by Hotel Mode View Post
The 380 is a bit different as the vast majority of trips are 4-5 days with many large time zone changes. This makes blind line holders fairly inefficient so you hopefully won't work too hard.

If you're in the first batch you will rise up the list reasonably quickly as they have released some SFOs to the 320, which wasn't in the original plan. With no more aircraft (yet) planned the fleet has a lot of trainers and not much training come the end of the year.
I have a feeling I'm mid-batch. Certainly 1-2 courses before mine. Maybe more.
I've got a decent idea of what the fleet is like from a mate on it, but hadn't heard re SFO's going to the 320.

Last edited by P0tt3r; 8th Feb 2016 at 00:43.
P0tt3r is offline  
Old 8th Feb 2016, 08:41
  #2596 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: London
Posts: 42
FPA to Variable

Such a shame they are changing the lifestyle that really sold BA to my wife and I at the Middle East road shows.

Im destined to join a quieter fleet, and the move to variable flight pay is now quite a concern. How much difference in pay will this make to junior bods on quieter fleets such as the 380/787/767? Before the change to fixed flight pay, was there any pay protection for those on blind lines with only 1 or 2 trips? Is a reserve month now going to result to a month of eating pot noodles to pay the mortgage?

Thanks again for the info!!
pomme pilot is offline  
Old 8th Feb 2016, 11:10
  #2597 (permalink)  
Junior trash
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 1,025
You're going to get a shock if you think you'll be doing 1 or 2 trips a month on a blindline on whichever fleet!

Last time we had variable pay it was around 10 an hour, so even on 900hrs a year it could only be 9k before tax. The money is being kept, just redistributed, so in a normal month take home will increase but will go down in a quiet reserve month/leave/really quiet blind lines. There's no certainty at this stage it will be voted through anyway.
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Old 8th Feb 2016, 13:16
  #2598 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: england
Posts: 661
What will be a shock is the amount of money deducted in taxes/NI/pension for those coming in from the desert. Coupled with the 100 tank of petrol may have some newcomers heading back East after a couple of years.
hunterboy is online now  
Old 8th Feb 2016, 13:45
  #2599 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: uk
Posts: 28
Originally Posted by hunterboy View Post
What will be a shock is the amount of money deducted in taxes/NI/pension for those coming in from the desert. Coupled with the 100 tank of petrol may have some newcomers heading back East after a couple of years.
I'm not coming from the desert, and will pay less tax than I currently pay, but I'd rather know what I'm taking home. I'd opt for fixed pay over variable pay every day of the week and twice on Sundays.
P0tt3r is offline  
Old 8th Feb 2016, 15:01
  #2600 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Button Moon
Posts: 300
I'd rather know what I'm taking home. I'd opt for fixed pay over variable pay every day of the week and twice on Sundays.
Here Here!

Variable pay also has an impact when applying for a mortgage. Some banks take an average, some will ask to see your payslips for x number of months and take the lowest figure, some will just take a fraction of it.

Giving up the fixed flying pay is a big step in the wrong direction and will certainly affect those of us at the bottom of the pile IMHO. But hey ho, lets see what comes out in the wash when the votes have been cast.
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