*Qatar Airways Group contributed insights into the report
A majority of respondents to an IATA global survey expected an increase in customer service, ground operations and cabin crew jobs over the next two years.
According to the report, to which Qatar Airways Group contributed insights, 75% of respondents expected an increase in customer service, ground operations and cabin crew jobs over the next two years.
That is higher than the 65% of respondents that expect growth in security jobs and 63% that expect growth in regulatory positions, IATA said.
The global survey of human resources professionals in the aviation industry highlights key challenges in talent acquisition, training and retention. More than 73% of respondents expect the major areas of job growth to be in ground operations, customer service and cabin crew.
48% report that finding new talent is a challenge, both because of the lack of availability of candidates with the right skill levels and qualifications as well as, in some cases, salary demands of new applicants.
In addition to the salary and benefits package of each employee, the HR professionals identified career progression opportunities (49%) and development and training (33%) as high priorities in job satisfaction and retention.
Only 28% of respondents reported that current training is effective, with many organisations seeking to complement their in-house training with external partners to improve the effectiveness of the training.
Safety and customer service skills are priorities for hiring managers across the industry. While technology is indeed changing the customer service role, it is not replacing it.
Qatar Airways Group vice president (Talent Development) Brendan Noonan said, "As an airline, we need to find out where the new touchpoints are that we can bring in customer service to support and complement technology to make the overall customer experience quicker and more enjoyable. There is an expectation from customers and we have to meet that."
IATA’s director (Training and Consulting) Guy Brazeau said, "It is an exciting time to be in this business.
"We were really looking forward to receiving the results of this industry survey and we hope it can be helpful to guide HR professionals in their decisions regarding staffing planning, training opportunities and areas to focus on as our industry grows to unprecedented levels.