Aviation industry at risk of a major EU regional pilot shortage

Eleanor Steed
By Eleanor Steed May 23, 2018 14:50

Aviation industry at risk of a major EU regional pilot shortage

The latest research from UK-based aviation recruitment specialists, AeroProfessional, states that little collaborative action has taken place in the last two years to address the pilot skills crisis, specifically in the EU.

The White Paper – which follows up on a previous report and is titled ‘Grounded before take-off: EU regional pilot shortage perspective two years on’ – states that with 95,000 new commercial pilots required in Europe by 2034, the increasing number of staffing issues and shortfalls within airlines is only going to get worse.

Furthermore, with industry demand growing in Asia, the Middle East and Africa, Europe’s pilot skills shortage will be further exacerbated by increasing rates of staff poaching and operational disruptions.

Training costs, type ratings, pay and conditions are all cited as major barriers to solving the skills shortage, with the report suggesting that the fundamental changes required to combat the crisis are still some way off.

Describing how different types of airline have been affected by the skills shortage, AeroProfessional’s white paper reveals that legacy and flag carriers are the least likely to suffer, at least in the short term. This is due to them offering the best packages in terms of salaries and benefits, but also the fact that many administer their own cadet schemes.

However, low-cost carriers (LCCs), as well as regional and even corporate aviation suppliers are starting to follow suit in terms of the benefits they offer.

Other key factors contributing towards the skills shortage include the issue of mandatory retirement and EU workforce migration, with 64.6% of pilots believing it is a good idea to work outside the EU.

Providing an insight as to how airlines can tackle the skills shortage, AeroProfessional highlights cost-effective training, innovative cadet schemes, enhanced inclusion and diversity, and strategic recruitment planning as ways for airlines to stay ahead in an increasingly competitive job market.

Eleanor Steed
By Eleanor Steed May 23, 2018 14:50