Hiring in the aviation industry is poised for an uptick in 2011, according to the annual Aviation Hiring Trends Survey just released by JSfirm (Booth 2543), an online aviation employment agency.
The job market “is better than people may think,” said Sam Scanlon, managing partner of the Dallas-based company. “The report indicates exactly what we are seeing on our site. There are more jobs being posted every day.”
More than 325 aviation companies spanning all sectors of the industry participated in the survey, with respondents including human resources personnel, managers and executives. Almost half the respondents (48 percent) plan to hire from one to 10 employees, while 8 percent expect to add more than 200 jobs.
Some of the hiring activity may occur here at the Heli-Expo Job Fair taking place today from 1:30 to 5:00 pm in room N220 in the North Concourse. The more than two-dozen participating companies include AgustaWestland North America, Bell Helicopter, Flight Safety International, Sikorsky and the U.S. Department of State Office of Aviation. Job openings include engineers, mechanics, pilots and managers.
This is the second year of the hiring survey, and JSfirm added a few new questions.
“We asked people, ‘What is biggest challenge in finding aviation talent?’” said Jeff Richards, the company’s business development director. Lack of experience (26 percent) and unrealistic pay expectations (19 percent) were the leading answers. The survey also asked what resources respondents used for finding employees, and aviation Web sites (22 percent) and word of mouth (19 percent) were the top responses.
Founded in 1999, JSfirm posts jobs and résumés and has a database of some 125,000 aviation professionals. According to Richards, the site just surpassed 10 million hits per month. The service is free to job seekers, and provides online tools for creating resumes and free access to job postings. But Richards said even though its an online service, JSfirm is a brick and mortar company.
“We have real people in a real office. You call the number, somebody answers the phone. These past couple of months we’ve been getting a lot of thank you calls, such as, ‘I finally got home to Michigan and got my dream job.’ We share that in the office. It’s really motivating. A couple of years ago we got, ‘I’m going to lose my house, what can you do for me?’ Now we’re getting the flip side.”