Pilots Hired - Instructor Shortage - Here we go Again

The airlines are back scooping up instructors again and it is a tricky balancing act when it comes to filling airline pilot ranks while not depleting instructor ranks.

At the regional airline level, we have seen first hand data indicating that they are hiring 70+ new pilots per month (these numbers get revised up as the economy improves). And it should be no surprise that the vast pipeline of furloughed 1500-1200 hour pilots has dried up. The regional airlines are now forced to hire the 800+ candidates (lets not get into what happens with the looming NPRM). Next up, our flight instructors.

 So what’s the problem?

 For those that don’t follow this pattern, the hiring of instructors wreaks havoc across all types of training organizations. Pretty simple concept, if you don’t have the resources to produce the supply, you will not meet demand.

No Instructors = Supply Chain Bottleneck

So, what can we do? We have picked up a few ideas from our conversations and hope you all submit more:

  • Collegiate programs offering reduced rates (some free) for advanced degrees in return for staying.
  • For-profit academies building “bridge” programs to hire recent college graduates as instructors. Great concept to tackle the pending 1500 hour rule legislation as well as providing employment for grads.