Quarter of pilot vacancies take over two months to fill


Airlines’ increasing demand for pilots is already outstripping the supply of trained aviators, resulting in more than a quarter (26.6 per cent) of pilot vacancies taking more than 60 days to fill, according to data published today by the world’s biggest job site Indeed.

The proportion of pilot vacancies deemed ‘hard to fill’ – i.e those still open after being listed for two months – is 60 per cent greater than the average for all UK jobs, of which just 16.6 per cent are hard to fill.

Mariano Mamertino, economist at the global job site, Indeed, commented: “According to Boeing’s latest outlook report, the airline industry will need more than 500,000 pilots to meet ‘extraordinary’ demands over the next 20 years.

“The fact that pilot roles are so difficult to fill indicates a strong need for a talent pipeline in this sector. With the demand for air travel showing no signs of stalling, the aviation industry may need to think about creative ways to train and retain pilots both now and for the future.

“On the other hand the high proportion of pilot roles still open after 60 days could also point to a higher than average turnover, indicating increasing competition among airlines for seasoned aviators – and a need for constant hiring and re-hiring.”

While demand for pilots exceeds supply, other roles in the airline industry are easier to fill. Just 11.4 per cent of aircraft mechanic and 12 per cent of aeronautical engineer roles took more than 60 days to fill.

The Indeed data also showed that while 15.3 per cent of flight attendant vacancies were still open after 60 days, there are three jobseekers searching for every one flight attendant role available, indicating a surplus of talent.

Table: Proportion of aviation vacancies that are ‘hard to fill’ (open for over 60 days)

Job title % Hard to fill
Pilot 26.6%
Flight Attendant 15.3%
Avionics Engineer 15.1%
Aircraft Maintenance Technician 14%
Aeronautical Engineer 12%
Aircraft Mechanic 11.4%
UK national average for all jobs 16.6%
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