Drive by easyJet to recruit 1,000 pilots over next five years
By Alan Jones, PA Industrial Correspondent
This was originally sent under embargo
Airline easyJet is launching a drive to recruit 1,000 pilots over the next five years, with a focus on attracting more women.
The company, which has predicted a strong summer of bookings as the UK emerges from the virus crisis, said it wants to tackle a gender imbalance in the industry.
Its pilot training programme is being launched for the first time since the start of the pandemic with a new advertising campaign on Monday showing some of the skills required.
Johan Lundgren, chief executive of easyJet, said: “We are delighted to be reopening our pilot training programme again for the first time since the pandemic hit and will see us recruit over 1,000 new pilots in the coming years.
“EasyJet has long championed greater diversity in the flight deck and this series of ads aims to highlight the extraordinary breadth of skills our pilots have and show that pilots can be found in all walks of life, in a bid to attract more diverse candidates.
“We continue to focus on challenging gendered stereotypes of the career having doubled the number of female pilots flying with us in recent years.
“We also acknowledge that whilst we have made progress, there is still work to do. Increasing diversity in all of its forms in the flight deck is a long-term focus for easyJet.”
Captain Iris de Kan, a mother of two who is seen in one of the ads with five-year-old daughter Kiki, said: “It’s important that girls have visible role models so we can combat job stereotypes and show that anyone with the motivation and passion can turn their skills to being an airline pilot.
“I love the responsibility and challenge that comes with my job – but it’s not as challenging as juggling the demands of a five-year-old and a little baby at home.”
Only around 6% of pilots worldwide are women, said easyJet.