As a group, Human Resources (HR) is an integral part of any airlines. Depending on the position, an HR person may be responsible for checking backgrounds of job candidates, hiring airline staff and flight crews, processing benefits and other paperwork, interfacing with insurance companies, the FAA or Transport Canada, terminating employees, communicating with union representatives, interpreting labor contracts, recruiting new hires, and answering telephones.
The biggest reward, to some, may be keeping staff happy and the organization moving forward in an industry short on cash and in constant downsizing or streamlining mode. Human Resources can have a huge impact on staffing choices and work environment. There may also be travel benefits associated with this job.
The job may require working with disgruntled or difficult employees, or having to terminate someone’s employment. HR Personnel must be mindful of the many rules and regulations governed by the FAA or Transport Canada, while at the same time represent the best interests of the airline company.
The candidate should have excellent communication skills, sensitivity toward others, be able to multi-task, and be highly organized. The ability to honor confidentiality is of utmost importance for HR Personnel.
Most airlines require that HR candidates have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent in Human Resources. Previous work experience in Human Resources is also preferred. When the position involves working with employee benefit programs, previous experience in that area is also desired. Because of the many aviation-specific issues that HR personnel working for an airlines must deal with, some airlines require that candidates be licensed commercial pilots. Labor relations experience is a major plus.
The airline may provide some on-the-job training. A certificate from SHRM (Society of Human Resources Managers) is often essential but may not be required.
Salary and Benefits
Human Resources Generalist I: $37,067-$49,666 (http://tinyurl.com/fwfm9)
Benefits usually include paid vacation, dental and life insurance, sick leave, retirement plan, free or reduced airfare for employees and immediate family members.