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Generational change in aviation – do workplace expectations change?

News actualites aeromorning

With more of the younger professionals entering the job markets around the world, Generation Z (Gen Z) will account for 27% of the workforce by 2025, according to a recent survey. No exception is the aviation industry. As the generational shift makes its way, the expectations new young professionals set are, too, influencing how airlines – and, in turn, consultancy agencies – prioritize offered perks and benefits.

COVID-19 pandemic had a major effect on Gen Z’s coming-of-age period – deciding to become young professionals and seeking job opportunities. With several years of travel restrictions, the soon-to-be professionals show a strong desire for having the opportunity to see the world and experience different cultures.

“After all, Gen Z is the second-largest group that plans to fly the most in the next 12 or so months,” notes Alison Dsouza, Director of Aerviva Aviation Consultancy, a Dubai-based international consultancy, specializing in aviation recruitment and document management. “That is why becoming a part of cabin crew is a very attractive option for them as it offers that particular opportunity. However, there is a slight catch. The young professionals base their decisions on the carrier or home base offered as well as perks available. As the demand for cabin crew continuously rise, so do the expectations of potential candidates as not everyone qualifies.”

Gen Z also seem to prioritize jobs where they see an opportunity to further expand their skills, broaden their talents and experience. Dsouza says that being a part of a cabin crew offers such opportunities as well.

“Being able to experience new cultures, work together with people of different backgrounds, as well as take on the challenge of all the responsibilities that a cabin crew member has, definitely builds various skills and character – especially, interpersonal skills like empathy, active listening, and emotional intelligence. Quite recently such ‘soft skills’ have made their way to the forefront, next to necessary technical skills, for a variety of positions, in aviation as well.”

In turn, airlines are already looking into some changes to better attract, hire, develop and retain talent, putting more emphasis on fostering personal development. This also could bring additional benefits for all other generations – currently working in aviation and weighing in future possibilities.

The generational change in workforce is already taking place, and expectations of what an ideal workplace should offer for the new young professionals – Generation Z – are, too, changing. Prioritizing perks like personal development, broadening various skills and experience as well as bringing more attention to things like the home base from which an airline operates, future cabin crew members are making careful decisions in finding their place among other aviation professionals.

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