Single Point Communication

Gathering Your Information

With Air Wisconsin transitioning to a United Express carrier, and our opportunity to participate in UAL’s Career Progression Program, the ARW MEC is introducing a new series of messages that will focus on career advancement.  Although some of the information will be specific to the CPP, much of it applies to any ARW pilot who desires to move up to a large jet carrier.  These messages will be presented under the “Career Progression Update” banner as seen above.  The banner is similar to our previous FastRead and Pay Day Hotline banners; all of the banners now carry an accent line in “retro” Air Wisconsin orange and green to reflect the company’s – and the ARW MEC’s – history and heritage.

As we move closer to the day we start flying as a United Express carrier – and we are offered the opportunity to opt into United’s Career Progression Program – we want everyone who wishes to use this opportunity to be prepared for the day when the CPP process will start.  With the company’s announcement yesterday stating that we can start flying in the United system as early as this September, the opportunity to opt into the CPP could become available just a few months from now.

Indeed, the following advice applies to anyone who is planning on moving to a large jet carrier. The difference between pursuing an interview as an “off the street” applicant vs. through the CPP is really WHO dictates when the pilot selection process will begin. You are in complete control of when this happens by deciding when to submit your application to the airline of your choice. If you are expecting a new child, or have big vacation plans, or you feel you don’t quite have the requisite, oh-so-coveted turbine PIC time, you can hold off on clicking that “submit” button until you are ready for things to happen. Your hope is that once you press that button, things will happen quickly and you will move from applicant to interviewee to the new guy in very short order.

Participating in the CPP will most likely alter the timetable: once the program starts, there will be a defined window for you to opt in. If the process works similarly to how the CPP is structured at CommutAir and ExpressJet, United will take a snapshot of everyone’s applications, possibly at the close of the opt-in window, and those who meet United’s hiring minima will be invited to take the Hogan Personality Inventory test. How soon after that will you interview? Assuming that selection is based on AW seniority, it may be several months – or more – before you make the trip to DENTK.

What does this mean, you may wonder – especially if you believe you will be somewhere other than near the top of the list? Remember what we said above about applying off the street: you initiate the process with your carrier of interest when you submit the application because you decided you are ready. With the CPP, you might do some mental math and believe it may take, let’s say, 18 months for your number to come up to advance to United. Regardless, your application needs to be complete and accurate today, not a year from now! There’s that snapshot of the application that United is going to have on file that we need to talk about.

The current programs in practice early on experienced an acceptance rate in the hiring process that was lower than desired. We also know that, by virtue of being selected, every one of these applicants have met United’s basic minimum requirements. Why, then, are they not successful in getting the job offer from United? Some don’t make it past the Hogan test; others don’t perform well during the interview – we will address these topics at a later time. There are even a number of applicants who fail to obtain the job offer because of their application. To be specific, the information on their application that was updated the evening they got the invite to go to Denver was vastly different from what was in that snapshot taken during the CPP opt-in window. As Homer Simpson would say, “D’oh!”

You may be thinking, yes, it’s going to be different. You will have more flight time now than when the snapshot was taken. You may have been selected to be a Line Check Airman… or decided to step up and be an ALPA volunteer… which is all well and good. Those will not be red flags when your application is being reviewed during your panel interview. But what about those two speeding tickets – from six years ago – that you have listed, that are not on the snapshot? Or, there’s that six-month gig where you were a freight dog for a Part 135 operator that you added once you had time to fill in the blanks. Imagine your embarrassment when you are asked about the checkride bust in your FAA airman’s file – the one that really belongs to someone else you share names with that was incorrectly filed!

Your application needs to be complete and accurate by the day the opportunity to opt into the CPP arrives. We cannot stress this enough – we apologize if we sound like a broken record*; but that’s how importantly we feel this needs to be said.

There is a considerable amount of work that needs to be done in order for you to fill out the application so it is (here it comes again) complete and accurate. Feedback from pilots and hiring professionals indicates that some applicants wait too long to begin compiling the information necessary to complete their application properly.

Here is a short list of records you should begin requesting and organizing NOW that will help you in completing your application:

  • All college and high school transcripts
  • All flight training records
  • Driving records from any state you have held a license in or received a violation from
  • FAA airman’s file
  • Complete employment history with dates, addresses, and contacts (Complete means just that, back to your first job out of high school. Don’t fall into the “past 10 year” trap that so many do!)
  • Complete residence history
  • Complete educational history, including flight training
  • PRIA records from all applicable employers
  • Criminal records check
  • Letters of recommendation

To help you with this task, a resource called “Progression Preflight” is available on the ALPA Fee-for-Departure Committee webpage.

In upcoming issues of the Career Progression Update, we will discuss how to best use this information that you are now gathering, along with some other pointers on how to optimize your application. We will also offer additional information and resources that will aid you in being successful in your pursuit of a job with a large jet carrier, regardless of which pathway you take. And of course, we will pass on any additional news on details of the CPP for the ARW pilots as they become available.

*record: an ancient method of audio recording, commonly called “vinyl.”  It predates the eight-track tape**, cassette tape, compact disc and MP3 download.  If not stored properly, they could be scratched, which could cause them to skip or repeat.  Vinyl is supposedly now retro… but how many people are carrying around portable record players?

**eight-track tape: aviation trivia… Bill Lear invented the format, originally called the “Lear Jet Stereo 8.”  Yes, THAT Bill Lear.

Ken Reinert, April 11, 2017




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ARW Blog

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Gathering Your Information

With Air Wisconsin transitioning to a United Express carrier, and our opportunity to participate in UAL’s Career Progression Program, the ARW MEC is introducing a new series of messages that will focus on career advancement.  Although some of the information will be specific to the CPP, much of it applies to any ARW pilot who desires to move up to a large jet carrier.  These messages will be presented under the “Career Progression Update” banner as seen above.  The banner is similar to our previous FastRead and Pay Day Hotline banners; all of the banners now carry an accent line in “retro” Air Wisconsin orange and green to reflect the company’s – and the ARW MEC’s – history and heritage.

As we move closer to the day we start flying as a United Express carrier – and we are offered the opportunity to opt into United’s Career Progression Program – we want everyone who wishes to use this opportunity to be prepared for the day when the CPP process will start.  With the company’s announcement yesterday stating that we can start flying in the United system as early as this September, the opportunity to opt into the CPP could become available just a few months from now.

Indeed, the following advice applies to anyone who is planning on moving to a large jet carrier. The difference between pursuing an interview as an “off the street” applicant vs. through the CPP is really WHO dictates when the pilot selection process will begin. You are in complete control of when this happens by deciding when to submit your application to the airline of your choice. If you are expecting a new child, or have big vacation plans, or you feel you don’t quite have the requisite, oh-so-coveted turbine PIC time, you can hold off on clicking that “submit” button until you are ready for things to happen. Your hope is that once you press that button, things will happen quickly and you will move from applicant to interviewee to the new guy in very short order.

Participating in the CPP will most likely alter the timetable: once the program starts, there will be a defined window for you to opt in. If the process works similarly to how the CPP is structured at CommutAir and ExpressJet, United will take a snapshot of everyone’s applications, possibly at the close of the opt-in window, and those who meet United’s hiring minima will be invited to take the Hogan Personality Inventory test. How soon after that will you interview? Assuming that selection is based on AW seniority, it may be several months – or more – before you make the trip to DENTK.

What does this mean, you may wonder – especially if you believe you will be somewhere other than near the top of the list? Remember what we said above about applying off the street: you initiate the process with your carrier of interest when you submit the application because you decided you are ready. With the CPP, you might do some mental math and believe it may take, let’s say, 18 months for your number to come up to advance to United. Regardless, your application needs to be complete and accurate today, not a year from now! There’s that snapshot of the application that United is going to have on file that we need to talk about.

The current programs in practice early on experienced an acceptance rate in the hiring process that was lower than desired. We also know that, by virtue of being selected, every one of these applicants have met United’s basic minimum requirements. Why, then, are they not successful in getting the job offer from United? Some don’t make it past the Hogan test; others don’t perform well during the interview – we will address these topics at a later time. There are even a number of applicants who fail to obtain the job offer because of their application. To be specific, the information on their application that was updated the evening they got the invite to go to Denver was vastly different from what was in that snapshot taken during the CPP opt-in window. As Homer Simpson would say, “D’oh!”

You may be thinking, yes, it’s going to be different. You will have more flight time now than when the snapshot was taken. You may have been selected to be a Line Check Airman… or decided to step up and be an ALPA volunteer… which is all well and good. Those will not be red flags when your application is being reviewed during your panel interview. But what about those two speeding tickets – from six years ago – that you have listed, that are not on the snapshot? Or, there’s that six-month gig where you were a freight dog for a Part 135 operator that you added once you had time to fill in the blanks. Imagine your embarrassment when you are asked about the checkride bust in your FAA airman’s file – the one that really belongs to someone else you share names with that was incorrectly filed!

Your application needs to be complete and accurate by the day the opportunity to opt into the CPP arrives. We cannot stress this enough – we apologize if we sound like a broken record*; but that’s how importantly we feel this needs to be said.

There is a considerable amount of work that needs to be done in order for you to fill out the application so it is (here it comes again) complete and accurate. Feedback from pilots and hiring professionals indicates that some applicants wait too long to begin compiling the information necessary to complete their application properly.

Here is a short list of records you should begin requesting and organizing NOW that will help you in completing your application:

To help you with this task, a resource called “Progression Preflight” is available on the ALPA Fee-for-Departure Committee webpage.

In upcoming issues of the Career Progression Update, we will discuss how to best use this information that you are now gathering, along with some other pointers on how to optimize your application. We will also offer additional information and resources that will aid you in being successful in your pursuit of a job with a large jet carrier, regardless of which pathway you take. And of course, we will pass on any additional news on details of the CPP for the ARW pilots as they become available.

*record: an ancient method of audio recording, commonly called “vinyl.”  It predates the eight-track tape**, cassette tape, compact disc and MP3 download.  If not stored properly, they could be scratched, which could cause them to skip or repeat.  Vinyl is supposedly now retro… but how many people are carrying around portable record players?

**eight-track tape: aviation trivia… Bill Lear invented the format, originally called the “Lear Jet Stereo 8.”  Yes, THAT Bill Lear.

Ken Reinert,




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