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What to Expect in a Cadet Pilot Interview

Securing a cadet pilot position can be difficult, even for skilled pilots with flight experience. The cadet pilot interview a very competitive process, designed to test every aspect of your suitability. Much like any job interview, you need to prove to your potential employer that you’re the best person for the role.

Don’t let this put you off pursuing your dreams of becoming a commercial pilot. There are plenty of strategies you can employ to help you stand out from the crowd.

Here at Learn to Fly, we believe that preparation is key when working towards a cadet pilot interview. Understanding what to expect from the interview process will give you the best chance possible of demonstrating your suitability and passion. Our Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP) is perfect for anyone aiming to secure a competitive role in a cadet pilot scheme. The program covers absolutely everything you need to know and provides you with the tools for a successful interview.

What is a Cadet Pilot Program?

A cadet pilot program is one of the routes available to future pilots to kickstart their commercial aviation career.

These programs are often designed to take those with little to no flying experience from being absolute beginners to experienced professionals. Cadet pilot programs are usually run by airlines and successful applicants will usually be offered a position upon completion of their training. In this sense, cadet pilot programs differ from training courses offered by flight schools. However, they tend to cover similar Commercial Pilot Licence course materials, including practical and theoretical lessons.

In Australia, many of the top airlines offer cadet pilot programs, including Qantas and Jetstar. It’s important to be aware that there are some prerequisites that must be met before applying to a cadet pilot program. You must be at least 18 years old. You must also be capable of holding a CASA Class 1 Medical Certificate and demonstrate minimum levels of English proficiency. Some cadet programs may require that you are a citizen or permanent resident of Australia.

It’s worth checking all of these stipulations before going to the effort of preparing for a cadet pilot interview. 

The Interview Process

It can help to think of the cadet pilot interview process as much like any other type of job interview, if not slightly longer and more intense. Exactly what the process entails will depend on which airline you are applying to. All airlines, however, will be looking for some of the same important traits: passion, commitment, and good instincts.

To start with, you can expect the airline to ask you basic questions about your flight experience and why you want to be a pilot. Don’t be too concerned if you don’t have a lot of experience. After all, these programs are designed to cater to beginners. However, it will certainly help if you have spent at least a few hours exploring the clouds. Learn to Fly’s Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP) can help give you that extra competitive edge. It includes flight training and simulation training as well as specific cadet application and interview training.

You’ll also likely be asked to participate in a skills assessment. This may include basic questions designed to demonstrate your maths, physics, and aviation knowledge. In addition to skills-based assessments, airlines are also keen to test your problem solving skills. This may also include group-based activities that test your ability to work in a team environment.

Sitting a cadet pilot interview can seem overwhelming. However, it can help to keep in mind that it’s really no different from any other type of job interview.

Tips and Tricks to Prepare

As the adage goes, preparation is the key to success. Many applicants arrive at their cadet pilot interview with the exact same goals, skills, and set of experiences. Being adequately prepared to answer whatever question is thrown at you can be the difference between you and the rest of the pack.

Learn To Fly’s Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP) is unique in that it is designed to provide you with practical experience, theoretical knowledge, and interview training, covering every possible base in preparation for your interview. In addition to the flight and simulation training, you will receive extensive airline interview coaching from a highly experienced airline pilot.

We know what each airline looks for in their cadets. We will work with you to ensure you present as a motivated, diligent individual that aligns with the specific qualities they like to see.

We’re confident that our Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP) covers every aspect of a cadet pilot interview. This means that you’ll go into the interview room knowing exactly what to expect. To learn more, contact one of our flight training specialists today.

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US Airline Jobs for Australian Pilots – What Are the Pilot Prerequisites?

Becoming an airline pilot is the ultimate dream for many people thinking about a career in aviation. Being a pilot in Australia, many have found that the Australian airline market is competitive. But what about airline jobs overseas? And what are the pilot prerequisites?

It’s no secret that Australia is seen by the rest of the world as a fantastic place for pilot training. This means that commercial pilots that have trained and qualified here in Australia already have an advantage when looking at roles in other countries. So, what makes US airline pilot jobs such a great opportunity?

The US airline pilot shortage

As the world starts to reopen post-Covid, US airline pilot jobs provide a very real and achievable career opportunity for Australian pilots. Recently we have seen articles from major US carriers like United and American Airlines talking about having to cancel services and routes simply because they don’t have enough available pilots to fly them.

As air travel was so severely disrupted during the pandemic, many airline pilots were stood down, while other more senior pilots opted to accept packages and retire. Consequently, many of these pilots are not returning to the industry. This, coupled with the speed at which air travel has bounced back, has quickly created a significant shortage of pilots.

US airlines have always been quite proactive in looking at Australian pilots. Now especially though, being a pilot in Australia means that you may well be in demand as a pilot in the USA! For Australian Citizens, getting an E-3 visa to work in the USA is also quite a straightforward process.

US-Airline-Pilot-Shortage
As a result of the US airline pilot shortage, many planes have been left grounded.

What are the pilot prerequisites for US airline pilot jobs?

Different airlines in the USA have different pilot prerequisites depending on the role. As an example, Commutair are currently actively recruiting Australian pilots for direct entry First Officer roles with the following requirements:

1. Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificate or Commercial Multi-Engine Land Pilot’s License with current Instrument Rating

2. Current First Class Medical

3. FCC Radio Operator’s Permit

4. Valid Australian Passport

5. Meet FAA ATP minimums (1,500 total flying hours),and at least:
– 100 hours night flying
– 75 hours instrument flying
– 200 hours cross country flying
– 50 hours multi-engine flying

There are other requirements you will need to meet such as the ATP theory exam, which is typically done before line check. There is also aircraft type training for successful applicants. But these things are usually organised by the airline.

With those additional requirements aside, you could potentially meet the pilot prerequisites with as little as 1,500 flying hours.

What is the E-3 visa process?

The E-3 Specialty Occupation visa allows Australian Citizens to work in “specialty occupations” in the USA. To be eligible for an E-3 visa you must demonstrate that you:

– Are a national of Australia
– Have a legitimate offer of employment in the United States
– Possess the necessary academic or other qualifying credentials
– Will fill a position that qualifies as a specialty occupation

An aviation Bachelor or Diploma would likely automatically qualify you for meeting the necessary academic qualifications. However, “qualifying credentials” can also include relevant work experience. So, if you meet the pilot prerequisites required for acceptance into the US airline job itself while being a pilot in Australia, you will likely meet this criteria based on “equivalent experience”.

The visa application process will be initiated by the employer once you have accepted their job offer.

What is the best way to meet USA airline job pilot prerequisites?

If you think that flying for an airline in the USA sounds like a good career move, we can help you to get there. Here’s how:

1. Complete a Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL) or AVI50219 Diploma of Aviation (Commercial Pilot Licence – Aeroplane) course. Approx 12 months

2. Complete a Multi Engine Command Instrument Rating (MECIR) or AVI50519 Diploma of Aviation (Instrument Rating) course. Approx 6 months

3. Complete a Flight Instructor Rating (FIR) course. Approx 4 months

4. Build your flying hours while working as a Flight Instructor (this way you can get paid while you build hours, and instructing experience is always viewed in high regard by airline employers)

5. Complete an Airline Interview program like the Airline Interview Coaching Session. This highly successful course will help you to prepare your application and also to prepare for the interview itself

We also have a wide range of Ratings and Endorsement courses available. Adding Ratings and Endorsements to your licences can greatly increase the number of hours during which you can fly. For Flight Instructors, you can add Training Endorsements that allow you to instruct in a wider range of flight scenarios.

Want to learn more? Get in touch by email to [email protected] or schedule a meeting and school tour at https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting today!

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Preparing For Airline Pilot Interviews – Student Pilot Journal Part 4

Student Pilot Mickey Wu travelled from Taiwan to Melbourne to train with us at Learn To Fly Melbourne. Despite not being able to fly for 3 months due to Covid lockdown, he managed to complete a CPL, MECIR, Multi-Engine Class Rating, and 5 ATPL exams. Now back in Taiwan, Mickey talks about preparing himself to be the best possible candidate for airline pilot interviews.

“What kind of pilots are the airlines looking for?”

People are called by the sky for different reasons. Some people want to be an instructor to pass down the fun of flying, while some simply fall in love with flying and want to keep it for themselves. For me, I want to be an airline pilot.

In order to prepare myself as an employable airline pilot, I decided to ask myself a few questions every day. The first thing I asked myself is:

“What kind of pilots are the airlines looking for?”

Before I started my training, I consulted a few experienced airline captains. One of them told me a story about a candidate that they interviewed years ago. This candidate built 300 hours within 8 months, and got his CPL and MECIR. And he knew all the settings and speeds of the Boeing B777 and Airbus A320, which were the aircraft in the fleet at the time.

“If we don’t hire him, we are making a big mistake”

That was the comment from one of the interviewers. I want to be just like this candidate.

Looking for a pilot job is about a mindset. We are hired to help solve problems. As Steve Jobs once said in an interview:

“Good employees are self-managed. They know the system well, and they know what they can do with the system. You put them together and they just know what to do”

I believe that applies to aviation as well. They don’t actually expect us to know everything. But having said that, the least we can do is to make them believe that we have the potential. And that brings us to the second question I asked myself.

“What can I do to make myself irresistible?”

Airline-Pilot-Cockpit
A well prepared airline pilot interview could see you sitting in a cockpit like this.

“What can I do to make myself irresistible?”

Based on the anecdote that the captain told me, airlines are looking for someone who knows what to do already. Or who knows enough to take the initiative and work the rest out. So how do we make ourselves closer to that standard to prepare for airline pilot interviews?

The systems on a big jet airliner are different from that of General Aviation training aircraft. A good thing to start with is the ATPL subject “Aerodynamics & Aircraft Systems (AASA)”. CASA uses the Boeing B727 as an example, so the candidates are able to have more tangible material to work on.

It’s similar to the Aircraft General Knowledge theory (CSYA) for CPL, except that AASA is for larger jets. So if you have finished the 7 CPL theory exams and are just building your flying hours, AASA theory is definitely worth spending your time on. AASA and the Boeing B727 syllabus can give you a good general idea about the operation on a big jet airliner.

Realistically, the manual of the actual aircraft we are hired to fly will be the most useful tool to make us more eligible. After passing the CPL flight test, there will be a long period of time during which you are getting ready to apply for airline jobs. This is the phase I am in right now. So now is the time to do some research on the fleet of the airlines I am hoping to apply to, and get familiar with the aircraft inside and out.

While I am preparing myself to be an eligible candidate for airline pilot interviews, the next question I ask myself every day is:

“Is what I am doing now taking me closer to my goal?”

“Is what I am doing now taking me closer to my goal?”

In order to fly properly, we always monitor our altitude, heading, and speed. We are constantly making corrections. Likewise, when we are shaping ourselves to be an employable pilot, it’s a great idea to monitor ourselves constantly. This allows us to keep everything on the right track.

I always try to compare myself to airline cadets. As my friend in Eva Air (Taiwanese Airline) told me, life during their training was pretty intense, and it felt quite similar to serving in the military. They get up at six or seven in the morning for self-study, and the classes are scheduled from eight to five in the afternoon. They will do some exercise after the class and end the day with more self-study. That’s five days a week.

If that is what it takes to succeed as an airline cadet, then this is what I will do to prepare myself to be an eligible airline pilot interview cadidate. So when I was in Melbourne, I kept a fixed schedule, pretending as though I was in the military or studying as an actual airline cadet. I even did this during the 3 month Covid pandemic lockdown in Melbourne.

I made my schedule six days a week, because honestly, if I were as good as those cadets then I would have been one of them. But I was not. So I figured that I would have to work at least a little bit harder than they did. I got up early and studied, cooked, and then studied more. Sometimes the daily Covid announcements kept me company in the afternoon. Sometimes it was the Taipei Tower on Live ATC.

Does it work? I don’t 100% know yet. We’ll find out. But I have faith!

We would like to thank Mickey for contributing these journals on learning how to fly, and on preparing for airline pilot interviews. To get an even greater advantage over other applicants, check out our Airline Pilot Interview Preparation courses hosted by Airline Check and Training Captain Darren McPherson.

Airline-Pilot-Teaching
Captain Darren McPherson teaching his airline pilot interview students.

Contact [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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An Airline Cadet Pilot’s Road To The Line

Now flying an Airbus A350 for a major international airline, Second Officer Vincent Mok looks back on his airline cadet pilot journey and shares some of his experiences. In his first guest blog, he talked about his airline cadet pilot training. If you missed that you can read it here. In this edition, he discusses the next step – the road to the line!

Week 1: “The Honeymoon”

Within the space of a week, barely enough time to recover from the graduation party, we went from being the most respected gold-bar-on-the-shoulders seniors at airline cadet pilot school, to the most junior fresh pilots at the airline headquarters. It took 20 weeks to transform into a line pilot.

Day one at the airline started with a buffet breakfast with the chief pilots. With the same hands that commanded many heavy jets around the world, they opened a small envelope and brought out a piece of paper with the company logo at the top.

“Who’s Vincent?”

I put my hand up and gulped down the partially chewed fried egg in my mouth.

“Airbus.”

It was no longer flying the Slings, Foxbats, Diamond DA40s, Cessna 172s or the Diamond DA42 Twinstar. The link between my fingers and the ailerons will no longer be a few mechanical rods. Instead, a twitch of my finger will send digital signals through a myriad of wires connecting stacks of computers conferring at the speed of light whether they will grant the wish of that finger twitch. I’d be flying the Airbus A350.

There were two days of Safety School during the Honeymoon week. We trained for evacuation through various tasks:

1 Retrieve Snoopy the dummy from a smoke-filled cabin mock-up after donning a smoke-hood
2 Operate aircraft doors
3 Jump down an inflated 2-storey-high slide (which isn’t as easy as the “safety cards in the seat pockets in front of you” suggest)
4 Drag a classmate across a 25m swimming pool
5 Drag the same classmate from the pool into an inflatable life-raft
6 Set up shelter in the life-raft

The last day of the Honeymoon week was “new joiners’ day”. We broke ice with new joiners from other departments. We played games, toured the simulator building and maintenance hangars.

“Your accent sounds funny,” said the maintenance hangar tour-guide.

“I grew up in Australia”.

“People will start thinking you’re a pilot with that accent”.

Instead of saying “you’ve just met a pilot”, I grinned nervously. The upcoming schedule was ruminating in my mind.

Weeks 2 – 3: Ground School

At airline cadet pilot school, we had 20 weeks to digest ATPL theory. The Airbus ground school was 2 weeks. We had to put everything we’ve learned, from airline interview preparation to cadet school theory classes, to full use.

Tip: Take the time to completely understand the aviation theory taught at interview training and airline cadet pilot school. Your future self will appreciate it.

The course consisted of:

  • Computer based training on a dedicated laptop where a monotonous voice explained the operation of all the A350 systems.
  • Study guide of questions, all of which we need to answer before the end of the course.
  • Technical briefings by our instructor, an experienced Airbus engineer.
  • Use of a fixed base procedural trainer where we learned Standard Operating Procedures and dissected the function of all the buttons and switches.

I once thought the Diamond DA40 Aircraft Flight Manual was extensive until I started studying the airline manuals. To list a few of them:

  • Flight crew operating manual (7000 pages FCOM)
  • Flight crew techniques manual (500 pages FCTM)
  • Quick Reference Handbook (90 pages QRH)
  • Minimum Equipment list (2000 pages MEL)
  • Operations Manual: Policy, Procedures and Requirements (1000 pages)

Tip: You don’t have to be a “walking FCOM”. Memorise the safety critical information and know where to find the rest.

Weeks 4 – 10: Simulator Training

Simulator training commenced at 10pm the day after we passed our ground school exams.

The first session was in a full motion A350 simulator and is similar to the “Effects of Control” lesson. The most challenging aspect was handling the momentum during landing. If we flared like a DA40, the jet will float and run out of runway. If we flared too little too late, our buttocks would learn a lesson as if the instructor hit them with a paper FCOM.

The remainder of the simulator sessions consisted of normal and non-normal training, each lasting 4 hours.

Tip: Spend plenty of time rehearsing each lesson in advance on a “paper flight deck”

The goal of normal procedures training was to learn the Standard Operating Procedures and associated manual handling. There were:

  • 4 sessions in the fixed based procedural trainer
  • 4 sessions in a full motion simulator

The non-normal training included handling failures (e.g. engine failures, electrical failure, hydraulic failure, decompression) including their associated ECAM actions, decision making and manual handling. There were:

  • 3 sessions in the fixed based procedural trainer
  • 5 sessions in a full motion simulator

Our final two airline cadet pilot simulator sessions consisted of low visibility operations and performance based navigation training and general revision for the upcoming type rating and instrument rating.

For our type rating and instrument rating in the simulator, we had to demonstrate to the senior training captain our proficiency in rejected take off, takeoff, go-around, diversion, hold, and landing in manual flight as well as with automatics (autopilot and autothrust).

Weeks 11 – 20: Line Training

“Where’d you go for lunch today?”

“I went to Korea”

The observation flight you do will be one of the most memorable of your career. You’ve trained for 14 months as an airline cadet pilot and finally get to sit back and observe the masters at work over a sandwich or two. I went to Seoul. After observing the first sector, I had a Bibimbap over a 2 hour lunch and bought some Kimchi with my meal voucher. I was a school kid on my first excursion.

Line training is about learning to fly safely, legally and efficiently in a multi-crew operation. It consisted of 10 sectors and took me to multiple exciting destinations including:

  • Auckland
  • Melbourne
  • Sydney
  • Barcelona
  • Washington DC
  • Brisbane

The 17 month journey from the beginning of airline cadet pilot school to the line check was full of challenges and triumphs. I made many lifelong friends and learned a lot about resilience, persistence and comradery.

I was lucky to have the ongoing support of my mentors including Darren McPherson from ACS – Aviation Consulting Services as well as my family and friends. Realising my dream would have been impossible without them. If your dream is to be an airline pilot, certainly consider the airline cadet pilot pathway.

Airline-Cadet-Pilot-Graduates
Vincent’s airline cadet pilot class graduates with Captain Darren McPherson from ACS Aviation Consulting.

We’d like to thank Vincent very much for contributing these fantastic blogs on his airline cadet pilot journey. If you are interested in finding out more about our flight training courses and online learning options, email [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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Online Airline Interview Preparation Course

Our highly successful Airline Interview Coaching Session is now available as an online airline interview preparation course!

At Learn To Fly we are committed to innovating our aviation training model so that student pilots and airline pilot hopefuls can continue to learn. We recently introduced online distance learning for our RPL and PPL theory courses, and we are now excited to launch an online Airline Interview Preparation course together with ACS – Aviation Consulting Services.

ACS – Aviation Consulting Services has been developing and consistently providing quality pilot candidates for a range of operators and airlines globally for over 5 years. The Airline Interview Coaching Session itself has helped candidates to achieve success in their applications to more than 10 major airlines worldwide, at both cadet and direct entry levels.

Are Airlines Still Recruiting Pilots?

During recent months we have seen unprecedented impacts on the aviation and airline industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Global airline traffic is nearly at a standstill, but that doesn’t mean that airlines aren’t thinking about their future recruitment.

Some major airlines are still actively recruiting cadet pilots. It is highly likely that the current hibernation period will make the applicant talent pool even more competitive once recruitment resumes for any airlines that are not currently recruiting. Those who use this down time to prepare will be far better placed than those who don’t.

Preparation will always be the single most important factor in giving yourself the best chance of success in airline interview processes. Our online airline interview preparation course gives you access to this crucial preparation knowledge from wherever you are in the world.

How Does the Online Airline Interview Preparation Course Work?

Thanks to advances in technology and software, we are now able to create a truly interactive online classroom environment. Your location no longer prevents you from participating in courses that before you could only attend in person.

This Online Airline Interview Preparation Course uses the same syllabus as our standard Airline Interview Coaching Session. The content has been refined to suit delivery using Zoom online meeting software.

The course contains 5 modules, each of which will run for approximately 90 minutes. We will present each module live in an interactive online classroom across 2 days. The presenter for each session is airline interview specialist and international airline Captain Darren McPherson from ACS – Aviation Consulting Services.

Darren is also available to provide further feedback and interaction with all participants following the course.

Airline-Cadet-Pilot-Graduates
Cadet pilot graduates with Captain Darren McPherson from ACS Aviation Consulting.

Course Outline

The following modules make up the online Airline Interview Preparation course:

Module 1 – The Interview Process

The interview process varies in both format and content for different airlines and operators. This module assists in providing a practical insight into the processes for a range of airlines. Participants also develop a study pathway to assist in structured and ongoing preparation further down the track.

We tailor this module to target the interview process for the specific airlines that course participants will be applying to.

Module 2 – The HR Interview

The HR interview is an important step for most airlines and operators. This also forms a crucial part of the online Airline Interview Preparation course. In this module we examine the human factors that can impact you during this part of the interview process.

We explore the content of the HR interview, and look at interview scenarios and styles for a range of different airlines. This allows you to develop your response methods in order to create the best outcome.

In developing methods for response, we conduct practical planning activities. These teach you how to best respond to airline HR questions using your own strengths and your past work and study experiences. The aim of this module is to help each participant to unlock the ways in which they can showcase their best and most relevant qualities.

Module 3 – Typical Review Questions

Whilst airlines differ in their approach and interview process, there are a number of key themes and areas that are common to all operators. Whilst some of the knowledge areas may seem obvious, the best way to answer these common questions themselves may not be.

In this module we look at those common themes and questions with consideration to the content covered in modules 1 and 2. We will work through each activity in a practical group style format. This way, participants are able to explore their own responses and also develop them further by learning from each other.

Module 4 – Group Skills & Exercises

Airlines place a large emphasis on your ability to work in a team environment. That means that group skills and exercises are an important component of the application process for many.

In this module we discuss the human factors involved in group dynamics, and look at teamwork. We also work through a number of practical team exercises, similar to those you will experience during the interview process.

Finally, we analyse the results of the group exercises. We then conduct an open discussion on how personality factors contribute to the overall outcome.

Module 5 – Technical Knowledge

Even for cadet entry positions, airlines expect that applicants have a level of technical aviation knowledge. During this module in the online Airline Interview Preparation course, we review crucial technical knowledge subject areas.

We take into consideration the differences in what level of knowledge different airlines tend to expect. We also discuss the expected knowledge levels relevant to each individual’s own previous flying and aviation theory experience.

The discussion in this module provides each applicant with an insight into their current knowledge. It also then allows them to plan for further preparation and study if required.

Advanced Training & Further Online Airline Interview Preparation Modules

The Online Airline Interview Preparation course is a standalone 2 day program. However, Learn To Fly and ACS – Aviation Consulting Services have developed a range of individual online modules for more advanced training. For further information or to register your interest in these modules, email [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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How Do Airlines Select Cadet Pilots?

What are airlines looking for when they select their cadet pilots?

There are more airline cadet pilot opportunities than ever before, but competition is still very strong. So how do airlines select cadet pilots? What are they looking for, and what makes you a stronger applicant than others?

Historically, airline pilot candidates were selected based on academic background and relevant industry experience. Over time, airline operators have recognised that there is far more to what makes a good pilot than this alone.

Captain Darren McPherson from ACS – Aviation Consulting Services is our specialist airline interview consultant. He runs our highly successful airline interview courses, which includes the Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP) and the Airline Interview Coaching Session. In this blog Darren shares some of the information that has helped guide over 100 airline cadet pilot applicants to success in the last 2 years.

Initial Applicant Screening

Initial screening and selection is a key element in identifying applicants who might be a good fit for a specific airline. It also provides an indication of who is likely to be able to cope with the intensity of a full-time flying training program.

Airlines have their own selection criteria that they adhere to when conducting initial cadet pilot application screening. This can include but is not limited to:

– Age
– Schooling and previous education
– University qualifications, both attempted and/or completed
– Previous flying or aviation-related experience
– Other relevant or additional qualifications

Cadet pilot applicants should check the key selection criteria for the airlines they are applying to. It’s important to know what will be looked at during initial screening.

Aviation English Proficiency (AELP)

Aviation English is the standard global language under ICAO AELP Standards. It is essential that airline cadet pilots can communicate effectively during both their training and their operational careers. This applies in normal day to day operations and more importantly, in emergency scenarios.

Airlines require that applicants pass an AELP test at a minimum of Level 4 proficiency. Even prior to the test, airlines assess an applicant’s English proficiency during initial screening and during the interview process, paying particular attention to:

– Vocabulary
– Overall fluency
– Spoken English and pronunciation
– Comprehension
– Sentence structure

For tips on improving your English skills, check out our previous blog on how to pass your ICAO Aviation English exam.

Group Skills & Exercises

Group skills and exercises form an increasingly important part of cadet pilot recruitment processes for nearly every airline. Airline flight crews feature multiple nationalities, personalities and cultural backgrounds both inside the cockpit and around the flight deck.

One of the most important things you can do in your interview is demonstrate your qualities as a team player that can work effectively with a range of people.

Some of the key things that airlines will look for during group activities include:

– Communication
– Leadership
– Teamwork
– Problem solving
– Decision making
– Situational awareness
– Workload management

Human Resources (HR) Questions

Another key component of how airlines select cadet pilots is the HR Interview. This interview explores your motivation to become an airline pilot, and also your background.

Airline interviewers will ask questions exploring your past experiences with a focus on how you overcame and learnt from past challenges.

Example questions to explore your motivation to become a pilot:

– What interests you the most about becoming an airline pilot?
– Which of your qualities are best suited to becoming a pilot?
– Why do you want to work for our airline?

Example questions exploring your past experiences:

– How did you overcome the challenges that you have experienced throughout your career or life?
– What is the most satisfying part of your career to date?
– What preparation have you done for today’s interview?

HR interviews can also be conducted in a panel format, and may be combined with technical aviation questioning.

Technical Evaluation

Even though it’s not a requirement to have any previous flying experience to apply for airline cadet pilot roles, technical knowledge is one of the best ways to demonstrate your motivation towards an airline pilot career.

The technical evaluation can include practical aspects of flying an aircraft, the role of an airline pilot, and knowledge about the aviation industry in general.

Airline interviewers understand that the level of technical knowledge varies between candidates, but it’s a great opportunity for you to communicate your motivation. Your technical knowledge demonstrates time spent preparing for not just the interview, but towards actually working in an airline pilot role in the future.

A great resource for technical knowledge is the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) “Pilots Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge” (2016), which is available through the US Government FAA website as a free download.

What Is The Best Way You Can Prepare?

There are many online tools available to help you prepare for each aspect of the airline cadet pilot interview process, but the best preparation knowledge comes from those who have past experience and success.

Learn To Fly’s Airline Interview Coaching Session has been created specifically to give airline pilot applicants the best possible preparation. The Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP) also offers practical flying training, which makes a valuable addition to your technical knowledge.

For further information or to register your interest in these modules, email [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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Pilot Recruitment and the Aviation Industry in 2019

In this blog, Captain Darren McPherson from ACS – Aviation Consulting Services takes a looks at pilot recruitment and the aviation industry in 2019. Darren runs our highly successful airline interview preparation courses. This includes the Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP) and the Airline Interview Coaching Session. In under 3 years, Darren has helped 162 pilots to achieve success with 16 different airlines internationally. He has also successfully mentored 2 pilots to join the Australian Defence Force.

Many define learning as a “change in behaviour from previous experience”. This definition has existed for as long as teachers have been teaching and as long as students have been learning. This approach continues to be one of the longest and most established definitions when we take part in any form of education.

Pilot Recruitment and the Aviation Industry in 2019

We always find it interesting to look back and review changes and developments that have occurred during the year. It’s important to consider what has happened in the aviation industry for pilots of all levels of experience, from those just taking up flying all the way through to commercial pilots graduating and starting their first professional pilot roles.

More new pilots than ever are starting their flying training. This ranges from introductory courses through to Private Pilot Licence (PPL) and Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL).

It has been a strong year for professional pilots, and the options available continue to grow. We saw an increase in the number of potential positions for pilots both locally in Australia, and further afield. Numerous international airlines have expanded their pilot recruitment campaigns in 2019, and are opening their doors to more people.

Fly Before You Apply?

In 2019 we noticed that more courses are being considered and completed by the next generation of pilots looking to prepare for cadet applications to various airlines.

Through experience from our airline interview preparation courses, it has become apparent that most successful candidates have undertaken some form of flight training prior to airline applications. Prior flight training gives candidates an insight into the aviation industry, and into flying in general. This greatly assists in preparing for the various components of airline interviews.

Airline Pilot Recruitment in 2019

Aviation industry trends show that candidates with experience from as little as 250 flight hours will be considered for airline pilot recruitment. Pilots at the 2,000 flight hour mark are in high demand, and open themselves to many airline opportunities globally. A number of major airlines have significantly lowered their minimum flight hour requirements for Direct Entry positions in 2019.

At Learn To Fly and ACS, we have numerous students and instructors progressing within this buoyant global pilot market. Graduates of our airline interview preparation courses have been successful at a range of levels. These include Cadet Pilot, Direct Entry First Officer and Direct Entry Second Officer positions with airlines across the Asia Pacific region, as well as the United States.

A Range of Opportunities

In 2019 we have seen pilots enjoy exciting opportunities operating in a wide range of aviation areas. Flight Instructors in particular are flourishing, with more students meaning more opportunities to build flight hours.

An increase in Flight Instructor roles has also provided an excellent opportunity for those looking to get their first flying job. In regional areas especially, Flight Instructor roles allow international pilots to build hours in Australia on a work visa.

Rewards For Your Hard Work

Although the aviation industry can at times appear unpredictable, we are seeing excellent results from the hard work of all students and pilots that come through our door.

This year we have seen pilots of many varied levels of experience move into their dream jobs. We have also seen many pilots position themselves that one important step closer towards achieving their goals in this exciting and ever-growing market.

As 2019 finishes, what is certain is that the aviation world continues to develop at an ever-increasing rate.

Contributed by Captain Darren McPherson
ACS – Aviation Consulting Services 2019

Airline-Pilot-Career

Captain Darren McPherson from ACS – Aviation Consulting Services is a Check and Training Captain with a major international airline, with over 30 years of industry experience. We are proud to offer a range of highly successful airline pilot interview preparation courses taught by Darren.

To find out more about our flight training courses, email [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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Step By Step Guide to the Qantas Airline Pilot Selection Process

With a global pilot shortage, major carriers are opening up recruitment programs to attract pilots looking for an airline career. Even though there are many more opportunities now available to join an airline, the selection process remains challenging and competitive.

Preparation is the key. To help you to understand what airlines are looking for and hopefully improve your chances of success, we have created a blog series to take you through the selection process for some of the major airlines.

Preparation courses, where we go into specific airline interview processes in great detail, to coach you towards achieving your dream airline pilot job.

Read our last blog on the topic featuring the Cathay Group

Let’s look at Qantas Group airline pilot selection process including Qantas and Qantaslink.

Qantas (Mainline) and Qantaslink (Direct Entry)

1. Remote computer psychometric testing

Remote screening of applicants is conducted prior to an invitation for further assessments. Following this, you can expect additional Group Skills and Exercises, an HR interview and evaluation.

Key indicators consist of general personality, intelligence, numerical reasoning, verbal reasoning and eye-hand co-ordination; all of which are essential benchmarks before further testing can be attempted.

2. Group skills and exercises

Groups skills focusing on various scenarios and situations are developed and assessed as to how a candidate works within a team. These Qantas pilot selection process exercises will examine aspects within a number of situations and tasks that need to be completed in a dynamic and evolving scenario.

Key qualities assessed are communication, leadership, general problem solving, as well as threat management. These scenarios are dynamic, fast-paced and will change throughout the exercises; subsequently testing a candidate’s ability to update, reassess and implement strategies or changes throughout.

3. HR interview and assessment

Human Resources (HR) examines a candidate’s personal and career history. With particular emphasis on enthusiasm and attitudes, it also evaluates problem-solving skills in dynamic theoretical situations.

Skill sets that are considered closely include communication, leadership, general problem solving and threat management during a number of both individual and group settings.

4. Simulator exercise and training aptitude and assessment

Flight simulator assessment will allow the candidate to demonstrate flying skills that are an essential part of any pilot position. A sound demonstration of skills is required to demonstrate a solid foundation of basic instrument flying skills.

Whilst not expected to fly the simulator at the level of a qualified or endorsed pilot, candidates will be assessed on their ability to process new tasks in the aircraft and training environment.

5. Detailed reference check

A final step in the Qantas pilot selection process is the professional and personal reference check. Speaking to previous employers, flight instructors, supervisors or vendors helps validate the candidate’s true character as opposed to an artificial or pre-rehearsed interview candidate.

Learn To Fly offers 3 dedicated courses to help you in preparation for airline applications, and we can customise the syllabus based on the process of whatever your chosen airlines are. The courses are run in conjunction with ACS- Aviation Consulting Services and are facilitated by international airline Captain Darren McPherson.

Over the last 2 years, these programs have assisted nearly 80 applicants to successfully be accepted into 10 different airlines around the world. Learn more below:

Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP)
Airline Interview Coaching Session

Darren-McPherson-ACS-Aviation-Consulting-Services
Captain Darren McPherson is an expert on the Qantas pilot selection process.

For further information or to register your interest in these modules, email [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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Singapore Airlines Pilot Selection Process: Step By Step Guide

Want to know more about the Singapore Airlines Group pilot selection process (including Singapore Airlines and Scoot)?

We also have airline selection process blog posts for Cathay Group and Qantas Group.

One of the biggest ongoing aviation news stories in 2018 was the current and future global pilot shortage, and the rapid expansion of cadet pilot programs from most of the world’s biggest airlines. With new opportunities opening up around the world, a career as an airline pilot is more achievable now than it has ever been.

The selection process is still challenging and very competitive. Preparation is absolutely essential if you hope for success.

To give you the edge over other applicants we offer a range of highly successful Airline Pilot Interview Preparation courses. These courses can be tailored specifically to your target airlines, and provide you with comprehensive training on how to make the most of your applications.

Learn more about the Singapore Airlines pilot selection process (including Scoot Airlines) and how our courses can help you below.

Singapore Airlines Pilot Selection Process

1. Remote computer psychometric testing

Designed to screen applicants and look at key qualities that are desired for the role as a pilot, the psychometric test covers general personality, intelligence, numerical reasoning and eye hand coordination.

Our airline interview preparation courses give you the opportunity to complete example psychometric tests similar to those used by the airlines. We will then thoroughly analyse your results with you, based on what airlines are looking for.

2. General HR Interview

This closely assesses the candidate’s overall motivation towards the role and to the airline, as well as some technical knowledge. In particular, enthusiasm and general attitude are assessed through detailed and focused questions about their dedication to becoming a pilot.

International airline Captain Darren McPherson has 30 years industry experience. He will teach you how to best present yourself and your documents. Darren will thoroughly review your CV, enhance your HR skills and technical knowledge based on what specific airlines are looking for.

3. Prepared written essay

A number of word-limited and topic-based questions are prepared by the candidate prior to the next stage of the process. Answers document the applicant’s motivation towards becoming a pilot and furthermore working for the airline specifically.

As part of our programs, we work through example questions with you and assist you in constructing your responses. From extensive experience, we are able to guide you on the type of content and response structure that the airline is looking for.

4. Detailed HR and technical interview

These interviews may be conducted by personnel from both the HR and Flight Operations department, and delve deeper into the candidate’s attitudes towards work, studies, life experiences, preparation and aviation knowledge.

In a simulated mock interview environment, we will work through advanced airline-specific HR questions and response methods, and perfect interview presentation techniques. The technical session will outline effective levels required for the various airline entry points. This will help identify your current level of knowledge, and any areas that you should upskill prior to interview.

Scoot Pilot Selection Process

1. Online assessment

A detailed online computer screening process is conducted with specific evaluation of key indicators including personality, intelligence, numerical reasoning, verbal reasoning and co-ordination. Tasks are specifically time-limited to place the candidate under pressure, looking for composure and consistency of results.

We are able to provide our program students with online assessment tools similar to those used by the airlines. We discuss and then work through results to track performance in specific areas most likely to be highlighted by airlines, and assist with improving on any areas of potential deficiency.

2. Group skills and assessment

These timed exercises place candidates in a range of dynamic scenarios to identify skills such as communication, leadership, mathematical problem solving and threat management. Tasks may be re-presented with modified group numbers or participants to analyse different dynamics and results. All scenarios are thoroughly debriefed and discussed to review applicants’ ability for self-assessment.

Group skills have become a significant factor in the airline pilot recruitment phase. We will practice group activities and review the effects of different personality types and examine leadership qualities as well as effective problem solving techniques within a group, through airline-based scenarios.

3. HR Interview

In this interview the applicant’s personal and career history are examined with particular emphasis on enthusiasm, and attitudes; whilst concurrently closely examining problem solving skills in theoretical yet dynamic situations. Additional problem-solving tasks are presented on short notice. This is to demonstrate, test and reinforce previously established group skills displayed during the earlier assessment.

We will thoroughly review your CV and then analyse your HR skills and technical knowledge. In addition, we will conduct a range of mock interview scenarios. This will link in with previous group exercises, to fine-tune your presentation technique and skills.

Learn To Fly offers 3 dedicated courses to help you in preparation for airline applications, and we can customise the syllabus based on the process of whatever your chosen airlines are. The courses are run in conjunction with ACS- Aviation Consulting Services and are facilitated by international airline Captain Darren McPherson.

Over the last 2 years, these programs have assisted nearly 80 applicants to successfully be accepted into 10 different airlines around the world. Learn more below:

Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP)
Airline Interview Coaching Session

Darren-McPherson-ACS-Aviation-Consulting-Services
Captain Darren McPherson is an expert on the Singapore Airlines pilot selection process.

For further information or to register your interest in these modules, email [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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A Guide to the Cathay Pacific Pilot Selection Process

This is the first in a series of blogs that will discuss the selection process for 3 of the major airline groups, and how we can help you with each stage. Today we discuss the Cathay Pacific pilot selection processes.

One of the biggest ongoing aviation news stories in 2018 was the current and future global pilot shortage, and the rapid expansion of cadet pilot programs from most of the world’s biggest airlines. With new opportunities opening up globally, an airline pilot career is more achievable now than it has ever been.

The selection process is still challenging though, and very competitive, and preparation is absolutely essential if you hope for success.

Cathay Pacific Airways Cadet Pilot Selection

Stage 1A. Initial Psychometric Testing

Designed to screen applicants and look at key qualities that are desired for the role as a pilot, the psychometric test covers the general personality, intelligence, numerical reasoning and eye-hand coordination.

Our airline interview preparation courses give you the opportunity to complete example psychometric tests similar to those used by airlines. We will then thoroughly analyse your results with you, based on what airlines are looking for.

Stage 1B. Initial HR & Technical Screening Interview

This closely assesses the candidate’s overall motivation towards the role and to the airline, as well as some technical knowledge. In particular, enthusiasm and general attitude are assessed through detailed and focused questions about their dedication to becoming a pilot.

International airline Captain Darren McPherson will teach you how to best present yourself and your documents, based on 30 years of industry experience. During the program, he will thoroughly review your CV, as well as enhance your HR skills and technical knowledge specifically based on what airlines are looking for.

Stage 2A. Group Skills & Exercises

These timed exercises place candidates in a range of dynamic scenarios to identify skills such as communication, leadership, mathematical problem solving and threat management. Tasks may be re-presented with modified group numbers or participants to analyse different dynamics and results. All scenarios are thoroughly debriefed and discussed with to review applicants’ ability for self-assessment.

Group skills have become a significant factor in the airline pilot recruitment phase. We will practice group activities and review the effects of different personality types and examine leadership qualities as well as effective problem-solving techniques within a group, through airline-based scenarios.

Stage 2B. Detailed HR & Technical Interview

These interviews may be conducted by personnel from both the HR and Flight Operations department. They delve deeper into the candidate’s attitudes towards work, studies, life experiences, preparation and aviation knowledge.

In a simulated mock interview environment, we will work through advanced airline-specific HR questions and response methods, and perfect interview presentation techniques. The technical session will outline effective levels required for the various airline entry points. This will help identify your current level of knowledge, and any areas that you should upskill prior to interview.

Cathay Pacific Airways – Direct Entry Second Officer Selection

Stage 1. Group Skills & Exercises

Group exercises form an important part of the Cathay pilot selection process.

These timed exercises place candidates in a range of dynamic scenarios to identify skills such as communication, leadership, mathematical problem solving and threat management. You will have the opportunity to re-present tasks with modified group numbers or participants to analyse different dynamics and results. All scenarios are thoroughly debriefed and discussed to review applicants’ ability for self-assessment.

Group skills have become a significant factor in the airline pilot recruitment phase. We will practice group activities and review the effects of different personality types and examine leadership qualities as well as effective problem-solving techniques within a group, through airline-based scenarios.

Stage 2. Simulator Exercise & Assessment

Flight simulator assessment will allow the candidate to demonstrate flying skills that are an essential part of any pilot position. You will need to demonstrate a sound knowledge of basic instrument flying skills. Furthermore, a number of selected training events are presented to assess the candidate’s aptitude as to their “rate or learning” and the ability to process new tasks in the aircraft and training environment.

Learn To Fly has partnered with Flight Experience to be able to offer our students direct access to a Boeing-endorsed B737 flight simulator. Our preparation courses can not only prepare you for the things assessors will look for, but can also guide you through practically on the actual simulator.

Stage 3. Detailed HR & Technical Interview

Personnel from both the HR and Flight Operations department may conduct these interviews. They will delve deeper into the candidate’s attitudes towards work, studies, life experiences, preparation and aviation knowledge.

In a simulated mock interview environment, we will work through advanced airline-specific HR questions and response methods. We will also perfect interview presentation techniques. The technical session will outline effective levels required for the various airline entry points. This will help identify your current level of knowledge, and any areas that you should upskill prior to interview.

We also have airline selection process blog posts for Cathay Group and Qantas Group.

Learn To Fly offers 3 dedicated courses to help you in preparation for airline applications, and we can customise the syllabus based on the process of whatever your chosen airlines are. The courses are run in conjunction with ACS- Aviation Consulting Services and are facilitated by international airline Captain Darren McPherson.

Over the last 2 years, these programs have assisted nearly 80 applicants to successfully be accepted into 10 different airlines around the world. Learn more below:

Future Cadet Pilot Program (FCPP)
Airline Interview Coaching Session

Darren-McPherson-ACS-Aviation-Consulting-Services
Captain Darren McPherson is an expert on the Cathay Pacific pilot selection process.

For further information or to register your interest in these modules, email [email protected] or visit https://drift.me/learntofly/meeting to book a meeting and school tour.

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