How low in wages would a pilot go?

767jetz

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[blockquote]
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On 10/24/2002 3:45:24 PM UAL777flyer wrote:

Am I mistaken, or did I stumble upon the Romper Room message board by mistake?

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[img src='http://www.usaviation.com/idealbb/images/smilies/9.gif']
That's funny! Hey, I heard Barney is going to make a guest appearance, followed by Big Bird and the Sesame Street gang![img src='http://www.usaviation.com/idealbb/images/smilies/9.gif']
 

Bob Owens

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Ual777flyer;
Why can't folks simply refute someone's viewpoint with their own, in a professional and respectful way, instead of firing off flaming posts with personal attacks?

Sure No problem, now tell Chip.After he gets done whining that is.

One of the things that Chip fails to see is that for those of us who chose other paths there is not much left to cut. Mechanics are not at the bottom of the barrel but we are closer to it than he is. My perspective is that of a mechanic who has finally seen his salary come up to a level where the second job is no longer essential. Even though I do not work for USAIR I feel that what happens there is of consequence to me. After 20 years in this industry I've come to learn that I'm not isolated, what happens there will have an effect here. I'm not prepared to go back to the days of working two jobs to survive. I, and many of my fellow mechanics would rather shut the door behind us before we go back to that. Chip, even with his $70 k or whatever cut he took is unlikely to have to start changing oil, timing belts or doing tune-ups in order to pay his bills.We've been doing that type of stuff all along. We've had enough. We never made more than those with comparable skills in other industries, probably because we never got our act together and formed our own union like ALPA. Pilots get what they get because they were smart enough to form a union that invests a lot of effort on image. Its the combination of skills and image, well marketed, and a subtle control on supply that allows these workers to earn salaries that are far and above anything comparable. Are they worth it? Of course they are. The issue, as Chip brings up is not so much what you are worth but what is it worth to save the company, and your job? Here is where things are vastly different. For the mechanic to give up $100,000 over the next six years and then still be way behind every one else its probably not worth it. Especially if its not really all that clear that the company will survive even with the cuts. To have their lifestyles permenently reduced to the point of having to work two jobs to provide the basics is a lot different than cancelling a country club membership, putting off buying a new car or not putting away as much as planned.If the mechanic says no, and the very worst happens he will survive, and can expect to be back to earning the same as he is now in 5 years or less. The EAL mechanics did it, and so did the Pan Am mechanics. Even guys with poor health and advanced age were hired. While it is not desirable to start over the biggest regret most of the Pan Am guys have is that their company did not go under sooner. The negative effects of the extra years spent working for less were componded several times over, less retirement, lower lifetime earnings and because EAL went under first, lower seniority. Thats not even counting the fact that industry wages overall were reduced by concessions that went industry wide because other carrier were trying to match costs. Pilots on the other hand are a different story. A senior pilot may never make what he is making now, he may never even sit in the left seat again. Comparatively speaking my guess is that most of the Senior Pilots from EAL and PanAm never regained even their concessionary levels of compensation. For USAIRs pilots it would likely be the same. If it took a typical USAIR pilot 20+ years to make it to that left seat in the biggest thing that U flies, he doesnt have another 20 to make it back somewhere else. Chip has not made this clear. He goes to all the other work groups and says that they must give more, I gave up $70 K its time for you to give. Well maybe its not, because maybe they do not have as much to lose. What he wants is for other workers who were just getting by before the cuts to do with even less to try and save his career and his (well earned)luxurious lifestyle. Chip will attack me by saying that I post to save my living standards, but I think that I've been up front about that. I say it flat out. I dont want to see USAIR drag down my wages. My observations on the experiences of workers from PanAm and EAL I think endorse my opinion that concesssions never save an airline. Why? Because if the business plan is inferior then that fact does not change with concessions. Morale declines, productivity follows and then even more concessions are needed. These low wages are used to hold back or even get concessions by competitors thereby eliminating the advantage gained by the concessions in the first place. In the end the company cant compete and it either gets bought or goes under anyway. The concessions at best prolong the process. In the long run this hurts most employees more. They would be better holding onto thier rates and increasing productivity, if that doesnt do it nothing will. SWA is proof of this, they are considered low cost even though their wages are as good as anyone elses.
 

AOG-N-IT

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Aug 19, 2002
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[blockquote]
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On 10/25/2002 10:21:43 AM chipmunn wrote:

AOG-N-IT, I applaud your level of enthusiasm and seeking cost control solutions, but you may not have much longer to complain about me or the company.

Chip
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Well Chip, I don't have anytime to devote to a person with such a defeatist attitude. I can tell you with all certainty that no battle was ever won in a full-scale retreat either. Cost cutting advantages by avoiding waste and mistakes could save our company easily. The simple act of ditching the A330-300's..and picking up the ASIANA B767-300's would save a fortune. We could easily lesson our Leasing costs..and truly streamline our Logistics Costs by sheding ourselves of a plane that's impossible to support in the International and Domestic capacity. The sale of what little we have aquired for A330 support would net a tiddy sum too. We would not skip a beat by having a B767 Fleet that we are already good at supporting...and have a network to support it , wherever we deploy it. Then we can expand our contribution to the Civil Reserve Air Fleet too. We did after all , make a hell of an impression with the DOD during our last venture with them. I have no actual concerns regarding Dealing with you You are nothing more than a thorn and a distraction to those that are seeking a workable resolve..without being forced to live Hand to Mouth I do not share your views regarding the possible future according to the Munn Doctrine of Doom I firmly believe that we might not ever be the same...nor will we be as large as we once were. Face it!! Being the same would only be a program for continued failure..as the past and present have already shown Us with 20/20 vision. The key for you my friend...Is to accept what the company has said. They will NOT be coming back to the employee's for more With that in mind..and as documented fact, this is where you could be using your energy for drumming up different solutions to our problems. If you cannot see this as so? Then you are right, I won't have you or U to be concerned about much longer.
 
C

chipmunn

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Sabre, Pitguy, Lakeguy67, & AOG-N-IT,

Since Sabre started this concept of driving down pilot pay may even more, with this thread titled “How low in wages would a pilot go?â€￾ and Pitguy has been leading the charge to have US pilots fly wide and narrow body aircraft for 70-seat RJ wages, I did some thought about eliminating all heavy maintenance work to more align the companies total labor expense towards one of its principle competitors Southwest.

Apparently, A&P Tech now agrees with this cost control idea and it’s gaining momentum, but I disagree with Lakeguy’s comment of this not being trade unionist because it would help out the other seven unions on the property. Pitguy is correct in that it would not provide immediate cash flow, but what it unquestionably would do would project a huge tangible cost savings into the future that would definitely be embraced by the creditor’s committee, the ATSB, and the Equity Plan Sponsor.

After much though the savings would be enormous and have many other tangible benefits for the airline. The first benefit would be the elimination of only 3,000 of the second highest paid labor group versus elimination of 35,000 jobs in a Chapter 7 liquidation. I know this would be difficult on those who would leave company employment, but would be great help to MSP, AFA, CWA, IAM-FSA, TWU, & ALPA employees.

In addition with the reduced head count, other savings could be saved by not having to fund the pensions of these employees, elimination of maintenance training, and during the bankruptcy process the company could seek to abrogate the hangar lease expenses in PIT, CLT, & TPA.

Another tangible benefit is that US Airways could immediately provide a business plan that would meet ATSB requirements for a 7 percent profit margin in 7 years and likely spark a bidding war for interested parties to become the Equity Plan Sponsor. This week the company expected 2 or 3 potential bidders to review corporate data, but if the company changed the business plan and identified the enormous cost savings of outsourcing heavy maintenance, just to help out like Pit Guy and Sabre have suggested, the company would likely see an investment much greater than the $240 million offered by RSA.

Sabre and Pitguy, what do you say, we could do an analysis of seeing if taking wide body and narrow body pilot pay down to RJ rates or outsourcing heavy maintenance and see which would save the most money. After running the numbers, I believe outsourcing maintenance would save significantly more money and better position the company for growth in the future. This growth would help out MSP, AFA, CWA, IAM-FSA, TWU, & ALPA with more mainline opportunities by more closely aligning the US maintenance cost with Southwest.

Sabre and Pit Guy, with all due respect, I’m not trying to pick a fight, but since you have brought up this idea of how we can help save the company, why don’t we suggest to management the idea of outsourcing all heavy maintenance to management, just to help out?

Chip
 

Bob Owens

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There you go again Chip. Cut someone else to save your six figure income. Seems to me that you spend more time here than flying. While your here hundreds of your fellow pilots are hitting the streets. They never made it to the top so they probably dont have the savings to carry them through the recession. You guys could help out your brothers without reducing your hourly pay by cutting your hours(and take home pay) and letting the junior guys who are not making as much stay on the payroll. The company would feel the effect of a paycut because they make less.

Outsourcing Heavy Maint usually sounds better on paper than it works out in real life.You have to remember that the vendor doing the OH is looking to earn a profit off the maint while the carrier performing its own is looking to improve reliabilty at the lowest cost. Its hard to quantify the costs of reliability problems down the road. When OH is done in house the company has the ability to balance out quality with costs. As long as the company has enough work to keep the line running contantly the benifits should outweigh the costs. Of course thats if its managed properly. As SWA gets bigger it too will continue bring in more of its own OH. As USAIR shrinks it may get to the point where it does not make sense to keep certain lines open unless they can get work from other carriers, then it could actually be a source of income for the company. This is nothing new, AA has gone in and out of the OH business for years.
 

Steiner

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[blockquote]
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On 10/26/2002 8:40:45 AM Bob Owens wrote:

...This is nothing new, AA has gone in and out of the OH business for years.
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This has been a cyclic fashion with airlines at least since post-WWII. Bring it in house for quality and production speed, send it out for lower costs, bring it back in, etc. Maybe it will all stop when the FAA starts enforcing all FARs for all operations equally, since many farm-out shops are not required to perform drug screening and security back ground checks.
 

autofixer

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Can someone run the numbers, I would like to see the results...info only. I would do it, but I have a business to start-up; and it looks like I have better hurry.
 

AOG-N-IT

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U has had it's history of being a Contract Maintenance provider too. Back in the early to mid 90's , It was not the least bit unusual to see an America West B757 ,Challenge Air Cargo B757-200F or an Eastwind 737-200 in the CLT Big House being worked. We also had a deal with George Shinn to provide maintenance services for the then Charlotte Hornets B737-200. I guess outside income was deemed to be a hindrence to performing maintenance to our own fleet...So that outside income was abolished from the radar screen. Think of how many mechanics we could be retaining in CLT alone..if contract work was explored again? After-all..we currently only use 3 of the 5 bays on a routine basis in CLT anyway. Sometimes un-scheduled acft see a guest appearance in bays 2 or 4...but the frequency is becoming less and less all the time it seems.
 

AOG-N-IT

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Autofixer, All true my friend! I think we still handle the Washington Redskins..and The Pittsburgh Steelers?...but what's missing? How about the Carolina Panthers? How do you let a high profile contract like that slip from your grasp in your own backyard?
 

AOG-N-IT

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Lakeguy67, I found out that you are correct about the Panthers being a Charter Customer....I got some bum info about Miami Air under-bidding us.


I do remember what you are saying about the Out-sourced blues The origional EAL B757's have always had a case of the Chronic Maladies ever since they were supposidly gone thru by Dyn-Air prior to our acceptance of them.


I can't think of anything dumber than sub-contracting in this industry!! We have had our collective A$$es literally scalded since we lost control of Air Frieght alone. The losses of parts..delays in reciept of needed items an the alike would register into the Millions of dollars since this mistake took place.

Let's examine the industry as a whole...beyond the limits of just maintenance. Look at the number of sub-contractors providing Cleaning , Catering , Fueling and even security to date...that have been accused of falsifying employment screening records and security testing results , just to get a warm body in place. How does this bid well for anyones security or peace of mind?....it certainly doesn't pass muster with me!!


I'm a firm believer in Quality Vs. Quantity....I will gladely sacrifice price for Quality in my private life too. I'm a car guy when it comes to my time away from U....I have seen enough regarding Second tear parts suppliers and the infrequent use of Second Tear maintenance places (When I didn't have the right stuff myself) to have learned , that there is no substitue for doing it yourself...or going to the ultimate experts for quality the first time. No sub-contractor on earth is going to be as picky, punctual or dedicated to a task as those that are going to being using it themselves. Take note that U Maint. people and thier famalies happen to Non-Rev like the rest of you do.


Having seen...and lived through the best efforts (Rolling my eyes) of companies like Dyn-Air...and seen what work like Sabre-Tech did for Value-Jet in the mid 90's.....and ultimately the disaster they caused them. Why would anyone in thier right frame of mind wish this kinda mess....and loss of direct control upon themselves ever again?
 

Lakeguy67

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[P]We do the Carolina Panthers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitols and Wizards also.[/P]
[P]AOG, remember when we got the five 737-200's back from Vangaurd that had their C Checks done at COPESA in Costa Rica? Tampa basically had to do all the work all over again, the same goes for the first 10 757's that we got from EA via Dynair.[/P]
[P]In maintenance you get what you pay for. Ask the UA guys that get their planes back from TIMCO, same story. How about the exploding JT8's that Critter Jet got from THY in Turkey?[/P]
 

1ab

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I think everyone should work for free once a week to save cost including pilots, mechanics, FA everyone
 

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