The International Air Transport Association (IATA) expects job opportunities in the aviation industry to significantly increase in the next years, with key challenges focusing on talent acquisition, training and retention.
In a survey conducted in cooperation with aviation human resources professionals, approximately 75 percent of respondents expect an increase in customer service, ground operations and cabin crew jobs over the next two years. That is higher than the 65 percent of respondents that expect growth in security jobs and 63 percent that expect growth in regulatory positions.
Furthermore, 48 percent report that finding new talent is a challenge, both because of the lack of availability of candidates with the right skill levels and qualifications as well as, in some cases, salary demands of new applicants.
In addition to the salary and benefits package of each employee, the HR professionals identified career progression opportunities (49 percent) and development and training (33 percent) as high priorities in job satisfaction and retention.
Meanwhile, only 28 percent of respondents reported that current training is effective, with many organizations seeking to complement their in-house training with external partners to improve the effectiveness of the training.
HR professionals also believe that safety and customer service skills are priorities for hiring managers across the industry. While technology is indeed changing the customer service role, it is not replacing it.
“We hope this survey will guide HR professionals in their decisions regarding staffing planning, training opportunities and areas to focus on as our industry grows to unprecedented levels,” said Guy Brazeau, Director of Training and Consulting at IATA.
IATA commissioned market survey experts Circle Research to learn more about how HR decision-makers were managing the retention, training and recruiting of skilled professionals to fill the anticipated job gaps. Respondents were from airlines, airports and ground service providers, spanning all geographic regions and representing a range of organizational size.