Pilot recruitment and retention are hot topics that continues to challenge an industry facing a pilot shortage.
It's simple. Provide your employees with the benefits and treatment they expect, the golden rule is: treat others how you wish to be treated. As an employee I value a number of things, but
here's a list of my top 4 non-negotiables.
1) Enjoyable work environment.
It's been said again and again, good company culture is imperative in retaining your employees and managing a successful company. It makes sense. If the employees are happy then the success of the company is more likely because people do what needs to be done because they want to, not because they have to. Good company culture will always be a work in progress. For those who continue to negatively impact company culture, it may be in the best interest for the company to transition that particular employee to a different department, or in extreme circumstances, terminate them (coming soon, a blog post that goes over what leads to terminating an employee). Ultimately, creating good company culture should be a top priority for both employees and employers.
2) Fair wage.
Do I want a million-dollar salary? Absolutely! Do I expect that? No. I believe everyone is entitled to a fair wage and a decent living, but when I say, 'fair wage', I don't mean an unrealistic salary. If the position develops, new skills are learned or responsibilities are added than yes, a raise is expected. However, overpaying employees doesn't guarantee an employee won't leave, and doesn't guarantee the work duties performed will justify the additional overhead. Employers should want employees who want to be there, and believe the values of the company without having to bribe them. Similarly with the employee, a position that he/she looks forward to is more powerful than a slight pay increase for a company they don't enjoy. An employee who is only showing up to collect a paycheck and is doing the bare minimum will only damage the morale in the work place.
3) Benefit options and employee perks.
As an employee, I expect coverage for my general health and wellness; i.e. vision, dental, medical, and life insurance. It's the extra, non-standard benefits that really set companies apart and tells the employee he/she is important. Do you know what your employees want? Do employees want a 401k, more vacation time, or would they prefer a paid gym membership? For Pilots and Flight Crew, is enrollment into the Known Crewmember® Program something that's important? What about Loss of License Insurance? There are many benefit options available for employers to offer their employees and can be as unique as you want, just make sure to tailor it to what your employees want, not what you think they want.
4) Straight forward expectations.
If my employer tells me I will receive a review and benefits on my 90 days, I expect a review and benefits at 90 days. If I'm required to work overtime, I want to know how much overtime. If I'm struggling and need improvement on completing a task, I expect to be told with a goal set in place so I can work towards it. It sounds simple enough, yet many people are left frustrated or confused from the lack of expectations set forth from the very beginning. Having an open line of communication between the employee and employer for what each others expectations are will reduce stress and make the employee feel like they have control of their position.