If you’ve ever attended a job interview for any career, you will know that the most common advice you will receive is to talk to someone who’s interviewed before, followed the same career path, and learn from their experiences. This has never been more true of a career as a pilot, where the path to cadet selection, and then pilot recruitment, is a challenging and often daunting process.
This is what led First Officers Jamie Ritchie-Butler and Ben Whitworth to launch their airline assessment business, AirlinePrep in September 2012. Since then, the two pilots and their team have have supported and helped many clients improve at demonstrating their skill set during their airline selections, through attendance at training courses.
As for background, Jamie and Ben are both First Officers with leading UK airlines and have been through many airline and cadet selection processes during their more than ten years in aviation. They have combined experience of Air Southwest, Air 2000, First Choice Airways, Thomson Airways, Qatar Airways and British Airways, as involvement in recruitment for one of those airlines.
Jamie explained more to Pilot Career News about the motivation behind the business. “We have a good understanding of what skills airline recruitment teams look for in potential cadet or experienced pilots, which is how our business was formed. The aim is to ensure aspiring and experienced pilots are fully exposed to all aspects of the recruitment process whilst helping them demonstrate their core skills so they have the best chances of securing their dream job.”
He added, “Of course, our courses don’t give away the answers to airline selections, they focus on building confidence through effective training in areas such as the interview, group exercise and simulator assessment.”
Jamie and Ben have also been supporting BALPA members since September last year, running free courses for pilots who have been made redundant or for those looking to embark on a career. The course for potential pilots was offered as as a prize by BALPA at the recent FLYER Professional Flight Training Exhibition.
Jamie explains more. “We recently ran a course on behalf of BALPA for the pilots being made redundant by GSS, which we are extremely proud of. This entailed exposure to competency-based interview questions and delivering a structure to answer them effectively, practice at group exercise, as well as numerical, verbal and ATPL theory assessments. The course focussed on the selection processes used by the major carriers in the Middle East, which is where many of these pilots are hoping to secure their next employment.”
AirlinePrep has recently launched an App for iPad and iPhone that allows aspiring and current airline pilots to prepare for forthcoming airline selections. The App follows an interactive training programme which helps users to prepare for varied aspects of pilot training, selection and recruitment. The App includes an interactive question back and guidance on airline & flight school selection processes. The App can be downloaded from the AirlinePrep website. Watch out for an App review on Pilot Career News soon.