Current Hiring Trend

Hey all. I’ve had this kicking around in my head and I’m curious what those of you currently in the industry think. I’m training for my CFI and plan to move on to CFII after that in the hopes of being able to teach full time. I cannot help but wonder what the industry at the regional level will look like in 2 years. I know that no one has a crystal ball, but for conversation sake, lets say the regionals are still hiring the way they are after 18 months and economy is still in a decent spot. Won’t the regional market be oversaturated with pilots? Endeavor classes are already full through August and they have paused their hiring because they have hired enough pilots for the year and they need to give their training staff a break. If they have hired enough pilots for the year over 3-4 months, other regionals will have to follow suit?

I understand the majors will be losing thousands of pilots due to attrition, however, regional FO’s can only log hours and move up to captain so fast. I don’t see 1 yr regional FO’s going to a major either through a flow or other means. I can’t see this ending real well if the hiring continues the way its going and I expect to see a furlough in 3 or 4 years because of overstaffing at the regionals. I hope my thinking is wrong because I would be in a bad spot in 2.5 years when I’m ready to move on from instructing. Whether you are in the industry or not I would really like to get your thoughts on this.


You are correct, none of us have crystal balls but you’re also correct that the Majors are suffering from a huge attrition rate. Due to the very aggressive hiring I’m sure some of the Regionals have managed to catch up some and that’s a good thing. Running lean and hiring everyone with a pulse isn’t good for the industry. What you need to understand is the airlines are generally pretty good at staffing models. Slowing the hiring to catch up is a far cry from being overstaffed and furloughs. Airlines don’t hire and hire and grab every warm body they can, pay tens of thousands of dollars to train them, give them benefits etc and then say “whoa, we’ve got too many pilots let’s furlough them”. Furloughs are most often the result of some acute anomaly (price of oil surges, acts of war or terrorism, merger or bankruptcy, etc), not from catching up with staffing. No, first year FOs won’t be going to the Majors but first year Capts might and probably will. That means faster upgrades and that means more hiring. Does that mean the Regionals will continue to hire at the pace they are now? Maybe, maybe not but all that would mean is they’ll become a little more selective and pilots may have to work a little harder for an interview. Frankly I have no problem with that. The fact is not every person with a license and 1500hrs should be an airline pilot.


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