Skills Shortage Looms for Bizav, Says EBAA-backed Study

 - June 22, 2017, 10:42 AM

The business aviation industry needs to be aware of and prepared for a looming skills shortage, according to a recently published study by Korn Ferry Hay Group conducted with the support of Booz Allen Hamilton on behalf of the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA).

“This study is an advance warning that we need to raise awareness among our members and in the wider industry and find ways to attract more talent to the sector,” said EBAA CEO Brandon Mitchener. “This includes developing a compelling brand proposition for the sector, concerted talent marketing activities, initiatives to attract more women and a sector-wide information plan.”

The study investigates whether there are current skills shortages and examines the likelihood of future workforce shortages. It assesses the workforce situation on a regional basis, including a comparative study of Europe, North America and Asia. In addition, the study gauges the attractiveness of a career in business aviation to students and graduates and appraises the validity of proposed solutions to workforce shortages within the segment.

The study concluded that there is little awareness of workforce shortages within business aviation, particularly for pilots and maintenance technicians; demand for highly skilled aviation professionals is increasing; and regional differences in demand for skilled aviation professionals will rapidly rise.

“Our consultants suggest a comprehensive strategy consisting of a number of initiatives to be taken to positively influence the workforce supply side of the problem, starting by making the industry wake up to the looming labor shortage,” said Christian Weiss, project director for Korn Ferry Hay Group.


Business Aviation could make it much clearer what jobs there are in Business Aviation. Everyone understands that there are engineers/mechanics, pilots and flight attendants but the public has generally no idea what other jobs there are in aircraft management, charter, sales, legal and of course the jobs working in a FBO. Many people don't know what a FBO is! Maybe we need to make presentations at schools.

Good suggestion, Graham. NBAA used to run AvKids, which produced learning materials for elementary schools focused on business aviation, the uses of business aircraft and aviation careers. It incorporated science, math, geography and language arts skills in the lessons, too. (See NBAA handed that program off to EAA a few years ago, and it seems to have withered and died. Might be time for NBAA to pick up that ball again and expand the program to middle and high schools, too.

I agree we need to change some things, why is it though more money for the employee is either not mentioned or is last on the list of things to do. If you have a shortage of something usually the value or price go up, but for mechanic's/ engineers it seems that people think lots of other things are important, and they are but after the pay makes it possible to live.
As for attracting more women apparently they are smarter than men and want a job with better working hours and conditions and maybe you are implying that somehow we are rigging things so they can't get in. They have the same opportunity I did and no one gave it to me, I worked to pay for school and then started at the bottom and worked my way up. I knew a few women who also became mechanics around the same time but most didn't want to because of the pay and conditions and hours. Maybe they are smarter than me after all.

Show comments (3)