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BA Direct Entry Pilot.

Old 12th Feb 2019, 16:26
  #5921 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Botswana
Posts: 670
Originally Posted by Capt Ecureuil View Post
But that's been going on for the last 30 plus years so hardly new, except the SH fleet wasn't Airbus if that's a consideration.

(DEP who joined straight on the most senior fleet at the time)
Yes itís been going on but not in the numbers weíre seeing right now. In a year where there are potentially 350 recruits less than 100 airbus FOís have valid moves elsewhere (at last count) suggesting that the majority of this yearís recruits will be going to the long haul fleets. Thatís wrong and itís in complete contrast to the recruitment teamís assertion that the A320 is the primary recruitment fleet. Iím not even moaning necessarily about a longer wait for long haul, itís stopping the junior guys in the Airbus RHS from moving up their respective list and getting better bidding power. It shafts every airbus FO in its own little way in complete isolation, but of course the company couldnít give a sh1t about Short Haul and even less about SH FOís so it doesnít matter.

I genuinely donít aim this at and bear no ill will towards people who take a DEP position on the Long Haul fleets, Iíd do exactly the same in their position and would have done had it been offered. What I didnít count on in accepting a SH offer was the majority of recruitment after me being on the long haul fleets and not only slowing down the move to Long Haul but not even seeing the benefit of better rosters in the meantime in a time of mass recruitment. Buyers remorse.

Last edited by RexBanner; 12th Feb 2019 at 16:40.
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Old 12th Feb 2019, 17:12
  #5922 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 544
Rex, Iíve just had a quick look through the PRIAM results. Itís not the easiest document to just skim through and decode, but are you arguing that BA should be releasing people from equipment freezes before allowing recruitment onto fleets that those frozen pilots have bid for? I cannot immediately see any short haul pilot who is unfrozen and has the seniority for their requested move, who does not have a valid bid. BA have a requirement for pilots in various locations and they obviously want to do that as cheaply as possible. Thatís the whole point of the equipment freeze period.

If you are talking about pilots who have served their time and are unfrozen, then I absolutely agree with you 100%, but I cannot quickly find any such cases.
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Old 12th Feb 2019, 17:13
  #5923 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Within 3 hours of a suitable alternate
Posts: 62
Originally Posted by RexBanner View Post
Yes itís been going on but not in the numbers weíre seeing right now.
I seem to remember and certainly in percentage terms it was.

I do appreciate your frustration however.
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Old 12th Feb 2019, 18:42
  #5924 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 544
I donít understand where numbers of people being recruited onto other fleets makes a difference to the pain of an equipment freeze. Everyone has the same freeze when they first join. A few lucky people do get released before the end of their freeze period, and always have done if it suits the company, but itís fairly rare. When youíve served your 5 years, you jump to your next fleet of choice ahead of everyone that joined since you. If a large number of people have been recruited onto your new fleet since you joined, it is actually much better for you because youíll join the new fleet on an even higher relative seniority. If no one had been recruited since you, youíd end up bottom of the status list on that new fleet. It has nothing to do with whether BA cares about short haul pilots. People recruited to long haul who want to get to short haul have just the same freeze. If there was no recruitment going on, you would still have your 5 year freeze just as you would if there was double the current recruitment going on.
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Old 12th Feb 2019, 19:14
  #5925 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Botswana
Posts: 670
Let me illustrate exactly how. If everybody who had joined BA after me had joined on the Airbus, I’d be sitting comfortably in the top 10% of the status list right now. In fact that’d be the same even if 50% of new joiners had joined on the bus. How is it impossible to see how much of a difference that makes to the pain of an equipment freeze? I’d say it’s pretty easy, much better rosters. Especially being top 10% under JSS. As far as a Long Haul pilot wanting to get to Short Haul but being subjected to the same freeze goes, are you having a laugh? (If I was of a certain mind, I’d say you were almost trying to deliberately wind me up with that one ;-) )

I appreciate that I’ll slot in ahead of the more junior guys when I (eventually) get to move but as a commuter even the worst JSS lines (except maybe the jumbo, but I’m not touching that with a barge pole now) are far more straightforward for commuting so I’d take them tomorrow.

Yes equipment freeze waivers are rare, I appreciate that, but after a couple of horrendous summers now it might have been nice to say to some people in the final year of their freeze that they had been waivered to go to the A350, especially as you could do it as a short CCQ in no time. But no, more Long Haul DEP onto the shiniest newest jet in the fleet. I’m not the only one bothered by this. Not by a long shot.

Last edited by RexBanner; 12th Feb 2019 at 19:47.
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Old 12th Feb 2019, 22:07
  #5926 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 544
Ah ok, so you are basically arguing that there should not be an engagement freeze?
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Old 12th Feb 2019, 22:18
  #5927 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: uk
Posts: 514
Originally Posted by RexBanner View Post
Let me illustrate exactly how. If everybody who had joined BA after me had joined on the Airbus, Iíd be sitting comfortably in the top 10% of the status list right now. In fact thatíd be the same even if 50% of new joiners had joined on the bus. How is it impossible to see how much of a difference that makes to the pain of an equipment freeze? Iíd say itís pretty easy, much better rosters. Especially being top 10% under JSS. As far as a Long Haul pilot wanting to get to Short Haul but being subjected to the same freeze goes, are you having a laugh? (If I was of a certain mind, Iíd say you were almost trying to deliberately wind me up with that one ;-) )

I appreciate that Iíll slot in ahead of the more junior guys when I (eventually) get to move but as a commuter even the worst JSS lines (except maybe the jumbo, but Iím not touching that with a barge pole now) are far more straightforward for commuting so Iíd take them tomorrow.

Yes equipment freeze waivers are rare, I appreciate that, but after a couple of horrendous summers now it might have been nice to say to some people in the final year of their freeze that they had been waivered to go to the A350, especially as you could do it as a short CCQ in no time. But no, more Long Haul DEP onto the shiniest newest jet in the fleet. Iím not the only one bothered by this. Not by a long shot.
Donít you think it sounds like you want the rules to be different so you can have it your way? It used to be about 10 years to get in the top 10% of the short haul status list if that helps so youíre already doing far better than hundreds of pilots that joined before you. If only theyíd had scale of movement that weíre seeing now.

Itís the same for everyone. I doubt you were bullied in to accepting short haul and commuting when you did and nothing has changed since you joined so you knew the score? You probably took shorthaul because seniority is everything? Well thatís still the case.

Iím a little baffled by your sense of entitlement mind. Youíll have a much happier existence if you just accept that your time will come when itís your turn. Patience is all.
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 01:28
  #5928 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: HonkyDong
Posts: 264
Does anyone have a sim ride coming up in the next few days?
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 06:55
  #5929 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Winchester
Posts: 5,162
Without wishing to pile on further controversy I’d commend OBK’s comment “to the house” and given there are some optimistic estimates being handed out to prospective joiners feel I need to add the health warning that:

“past performance is not an indicator of future outcomes

...well certainly the past performance measured over the last 4-5 years..

We’ve had an unusually high rate of recruitment (which hands up, I didn’t predict) at BA over the past few years. That has propelled some up the short haul “fleet seniority” scale at a dizzying rate. That is not the historical norm (OBK’s 10 years to get 10% from the top of a shorthaul P2 list sounds more normal) and TBH looking at future rates of retirements from BA and forthcoming events that might effect the U.K. and other economies I’m not sure I would be making plans based on an extrapolation of current progression rates up the senority scales and bouncing across to LH PDQ...(that’s me, all optimistic as usual).

As for the controversial issue of engagement freezes, they are what they are, always have been.

Over the years there has frequently been sizeable DEP recruitment onto LH fleets...what has perhaps made things more irritating for some nowadays is that decades back the Back Every Afternoon cohort were generally very happy with their day trips, Berlin postings and shuttle back up credit and they wouldn’t touch LH with a barge pole.....now with EASA FTLs and the hit of JSS SH has perhaps become a much less comfortable place to be.


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Old 13th Feb 2019, 09:16
  #5930 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Surrey
Posts: 53
Originally Posted by OBK! View Post

You probably took shorthaul because seniority is everything? Well thatís still the case.
Would you say itís better to get in ASAP, on the SH fleet, take the engagement freeze and then go LH, or wait an extra year until youíve the hours for a DEP LH position but with a lower company seniority?
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 09:33
  #5931 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Dark Side of the Moon
Posts: 723
Take the seniority as soon as you can, the difference of weeks in join date could mean years of your career being behind.
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 10:14
  #5932 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Germany
Posts: 1,906
Weíve had an unusually high rate of recruitment (which hands up, I didnít predict) at BA over the past few years.
with the retirement plot with those that decided to extend from 55, itís not stopping any time soon. Maybe a pause with brexit if the industry takes a demand hit but even so, retirees need replacing.

Id be surprised to see it stop for the next 3 years tbh.
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 11:12
  #5933 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Winchester
Posts: 5,162
Originally Posted by Busdriver01 View Post
Or wait an extra year until you’ve the hours for a DEP LH position but with a lower company seniority?
..Short answer = what Ollie said.

Long answer= ....and if BA aren’t recruiting in a year?.

Look I know I’m in danger of starting to sound like a stuck record but on the basis of having been at BA during a couple of downturns including the fallout from 9/11 I can promise you if something comes along out of left field that adversely effects the business BA can and will slam the doors shut overnight (post 9/11 the 747 Classic Fleet was binned so fast if you blinked you missed it).

We have Brexit imminent (potential effect unknown) and if you’ve read the papers recently you’ll see reports that one or two major economies are starting to look a bit wobbly...worth bearing in mind when a lot of BA’s passengers travel for business, not leisure reasons.

Fundamentally, and despite all the optimism displayed by many here (hopefully and probably justified) there is zero, nil, no guarantee in reality that BA recruiting will continue “as is”...so if you have are read up on things like engagement freezes, T&Cs, rostering/lifestyle under JSS and still want to join BA then I’d honestly recommend you take the first post offered, regardless of fleet, and get a place on the Master Seniority List.



Last edited by wiggy; 13th Feb 2019 at 11:51.
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 12:03
  #5934 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: London
Posts: 89
Originally Posted by Busdriver01 View Post


Would you say itís better to get in ASAP, on the SH fleet, take the engagement freeze and then go LH, or wait an extra year until youíve the hours for a DEP LH position but with a lower company seniority?
Just to re-iterate what wiggy says above, if you want a long career at BA, AND commuting is not an issue for you (ie you live relatively close to Heathrow) then I would say take the first slot that comes up. Who knows when recruitment will stop (so you might end up not getting in at all) or alternatively by waiting you might cede 300 seniority places which in the long run will come back to haunt you. Either way I can only really see downside if you definitely want to work for BA.

On the subject of direct entry long haul, I have never really understood why people see it as such a golden ticket. Perhaps with the exception of commuters for whom a short haul job would not be practical. For most though, the reality as a long haul DEP is you are going to join a fleet at the bottom, and pretty much stay there for years. Maybe if you are in your 20's and single that's not so terrible. If you have a family or other commitments it looks like a disaster to me. I would argue the lack of control for junior people under JSS coupled with some of the bruising junior rosters on long haul (6 trips a month) would take their toll on just about anyone in the timescales we are talking about - I would re-emphasise that this could go on for years and years. Perhaps that is why we are now seeing, a small but statistically significant number of resignations from Junior people who joined on long haul as DEP's only to find it was unsustainable.

The alternative is you join on the Airbus and watch your relative seniority rise quickly if recruitment continues, as I believe is likely. You get your lifestyle back far more quickly and when you do eventually go long haul, thanks to the DEPs who don't subscribe to my views, you won't start at the bottom all over again.

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Old 13th Feb 2019, 13:55
  #5935 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Surrey
Posts: 53
Thanks for the insight. I suppose I thought that, being in a fortunate position at a short haul carrier already, if I were to move to the bottom of the pile at a new airline (Not complaining about that (yet..!) everyone puts their time in and that’s the system) It’d be easier to take in the short term if I were at least flying long haul and not to the same destinations I already operate, from the same base, etc etc

Sounds like in the long term (and for me that’ll be a very long time, hopefully) it’d still be better to take the first spot.

Cheers again
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 14:51
  #5936 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: London
Age: 40
Posts: 101
Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
now with EASA FTLs and the hit of JSS SH has perhaps become a much less comfortable place to be.

I completely agree with Northern Monkey most of my colleagues from my joiners course just over 4 years ago would have gone LH at the first possible opportunity. However now with JSS the conversation has changed and all are considering staying another year or even two on SH to enjoy the lifestyle a bit longer while getting slightly more senior by the time we jump across to LH due to DEP LH joining.
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 18:37
  #5937 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Surrey
Posts: 53
This may be a daft question, and is almost certainly one that’s been asked before but I can’t find anything on it...

If you’ve got a load of people who are on the 320, who started before someone DEP on a long haul fleet, and those 320 pilots move onto that same long haul fleet (even in 10 years time), does that essentially mean the DEP long haul pilot loses relative seniority, having gained it over a decade?

In other words, is it possible that those who are joining DEP long haul now will start to see some control over their rosters, and then lose that control again down the line when people such as in the comment above move across?
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 18:51
  #5938 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: London,UK
Posts: 3
Originally Posted by Busdriver01 View Post
This may be a daft question, and is almost certainly one that’s been asked before but I can’t find anything on it...

If you’ve got a load of people who are on the 320, who started before someone DEP on a long haul fleet, and those 320 pilots move onto that same long haul fleet (even in 10 years time), does that essentially mean the DEP long haul pilot loses relative seniority, having gained it over a decade?

In other words, is it possible that those who are joining DEP long haul now will start to see some control over their rosters, and then lose that control again down the line when people such as in the comment above move across?
In BA, Date of Joining is key. Don't get hung up on waiting for a particular fleet as over your remaining career, your seniority number is everything.
Your lifestyle will depend on relative seniority within the fleet. I believe you get full fleet change bidding rights after the first five years.
Hope this helps
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 18:58
  #5939 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Surrey
Posts: 53
Yes thatís what I had come to understand. Though master seniority place will never get leapfrogged, fleet seniority place will regularly. That alone probably makes it worth getting first available position (SH or LH).
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Old 13th Feb 2019, 19:05
  #5940 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Winchester
Posts: 5,162

Originally Posted by Busdriver01 View Post
is it possible that those who are joining DEP long haul now will start to see some control over their rosters, and then lose that control again down the line when people such as in the comment above move across?
Unlikely but it’s a bit of a “that depends”.. luck in and join on a new fast growing fleet and you can do well ...until the senior pilots pile in above you (been there, seen that). On a largish fleet probably the worse that could happen is your level of control stagnates, though I guess in extremis it could reduce if for some bizarre reason people below you on the Fleet transfer off. Probably the bigger threat to meaningful livestyle and lifestyle control over the years on any fleet would be a change of routes/destinations for your Fleet (happened on the 747, then again on the 744).

Though master seniority place will never get leapfrogged, fleet seniority place will regularly.
Correct...at the risk of outing myself I’ll make the observation that it has been demonstrated that it perfectly possible to sit one off the bottom of a Fleet senority list, be gaining company seniority, but at the same time, since it is an new, expanding and suddenly popular fleet see the number of pilots above you on your fleet go from about 100 to several hundred.....
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