Is there any better indication of how much Emirates plans to upscale its recruitment of new cabin crew than the news that the airline is currently hiring the recruiters who will oversee the process?
In the last couple of days, the Dubai-based airline has posted a job ad for at least one new cabin crew recruiter – candidates interested in the position have only until the 1st March to submit their applications.
After a 13-month recruitment suspension, last month Emirates suddenly announced that it would start hiring new cabin crew. Almost immediately, the airline began accepting online applications for the coveted position.
We’ve learnt from several sources at the airline that senior managers expect around 380 new recruits to start training courses each month from April onwards. At the moment, there’s no news of when the latest recruitment process will finish.
The airline’s fortunes appear to be undergoing somewhat of a turnaround of late after profits had dropped significantly in 2016/2017. Sir Tim Clark, Emirates’ president has said the carrier made a healthy profit in the first half of 2017 and a resurgence in the energy sector will certainly have a big impact on the airline’s recovery.
Emirates, famously, used to conduct cabin crew Open Day’s in the city’s around the world – something almost akin to a casting where candidates could go through almost every stage of the recruitment process in just one to two days.
There was no limit on how many Open Day’s a candidate could go to – stories abound of successful recruits who had attended upwards of 10 Open Day’s before finally being accepted. Candidates have, in the past, said it was simply the personal connection they made with a recruiter that made all the difference.
But that’s all changed now – Candidates are now forced to submit an online application where it will be reviewed by Emirates’ HR team in Dubai. Those lucky enough to be shortlisted will be invited to attend an Assessment Day in what Emirates calls “targeted major cities”.
According to the job ad, the airline’s new cabin crew recruiter will be spending quite a bit of time abroad – conducting assessment day’s in a single city for between 7-10 days or upwards of 15 days when the recruitment drive takes them to two separate cities.
Of course, we don’t know whether Emirates has an idea of who it might want to take on the role – early last year, rumours suggested the airline had been forced to make some recruiters redundant when the true scale of the airline’s financial problems became apparent.
In November 2017, Emirates said natural attrition had resulted in the airline’s workforce shrinking and admitted some staffers had been made redundant. In an internal memo, a senior Emirates exec said non-essential recruitment had been “stripped away” and some employees were even being encouraged to take unpaid leave.
Many of the ‘old’ Emirates cabin crew recruiters had worked their way up through the company – originally starting as cabin crew themselves before joining the recruitment team permanently. While Emirates says previous flying experience will be an advantage for the role it will be interesting to see whether the airline plans to bring in new faces or invite back former staff for this latest hiring spree.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.