Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends

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  • airline employment &fleet forecast trends2013

    special report

  • airline employment & fleet forecast trends 2013

    2 | Flightglobal Jobs | Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 | Flightglobal Jobs | 3

    Across the globe which regions are developing and what are the projections for growth? Which aircraft will receive the most orders over the next few years? Of all the airlines in operation today, which are looking to develop and how, to ensure they have a sustainable future beyond 2013? All of these questions will affect your recruitment this year and through commissioning this whitepaper we hope to provide some insight into the answers you need to effectively plan your strategy.

    Planning how to reach the right candidates using targeted and cost effective methods is where Flightglobal can really help you. As the only aviation website that combines the latest industry news with sites dedicated to both jobs and training, we are unique in offering access to candidates throughout the employment cycle, from those starting out through to experienced professionals.

    To be seen as an employer of choice in the marketplace, reaching a large but qualified audience is key to the success of your business. Flightglobal Jobs has over 160,000 visitors every month, with over 1 million more potential jobseekers visiting our news site for the latest articles*. We have a variety of solutions to reach this audience of high quality aviation and aerospace professionals, which can also give you the opportunity to raise your brand awareness and stand out against your competitors.

    We hope you find the following paper valuable to your recruitment needs. If you need any further help in attracting the right audience, then please get in touch with our team on the details below.

    Lucinda ChiaGroup Sales ManagerFlightglobal Jobs and Training

    * 160,818 Flightglobal Jobs visitors and 1,071,746 visitors on average Sept-Nov 2012

    Cover photo credit: F1 Online/Rex Features

    Flightglobal JobsQuadrant House, The Quadrant, Sutton, Surrey, SM2 5AS, UKTel: +44 20 8652 4900Email: Centre:

  • 2 | Flightglobal Jobs | Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 | Flightglobal Jobs | 3

    forewordWelcome to our latest Flightglobal Special Report into Airline Employment and Fleet Forecast Trends, produced for Flightglobal Jobs. In this publication we draw on a variety of sources to analyse how future patterns in the worlds airliner fleet will drive employment in the sector.

    The shape of commercial aviation has changed hugely over the past decade and a half. Already mature by the 1990s, with an ageing fleet and sluggish growth in passenger traffic, the North American market never really recovered from the aftershocks of the stock market crash of 2000, 9/11 and the subsequent global crises of the 21st century. Although North America still has more airliners than any region dominated by single-aisle types it is the only part of the world whose narrowbody fleet has not grown in 20 years.

    Europe, for long the second biggest market for aviation, has also suffered, with the current economic problems forcing a wave of consolidation among airlines. More than a quarter of the worlds fleet is based in the region, but again immediate prospects for growth in terms of fleet and airline employment are slim.

    It is emerging markets particularly the giant Asia-Pacific region that represent the biggest customers for the commercial aerospace industry, boosting manufacturer backlogs and from often very small bases leading the charge when it comes to recruiting. With not enough experienced pilots among their own citizens to meet demand, airlines in countries such as China and the United Arab Emirates are having to lure flightcrew from abroad. While putting in place fast-tracked schemes to accelerate the career development of their own

    nationals, these carriers are likely to need talent from abroad for some time to come.

    The traditional structure of the industry is also being turned on its head. For many years the North American market was dominated by large carriers operating from hub airports, with regional affiliates and subsidiaries feeding them with passengers. In Europe and elsewhere, flag-carriers often state-owned dominated the airways. The rise of the low-cost carrier in Europe has forced many of these legacy airlines to raise their game by cutting costs, or, in some instances, out of business. In Asia, new players opened the market for millions of new passengers. And in the Middle East, the phenomenal success of the big three global connectors Emirates, Etihad and Qatar Airways has changed the face of long-haul travel.

    Aviation remains a fast-changing industry. We all remember airlines that were huge brands in the relatively recent past, that today do not exist or have been subsumed into competitors: from Pan Am to Varig to Sabena and Continental. Meanwhile, airlines that were relative minows or did not exist a decade ago are now global players. Failure rates are high, but given the rise in demand for air travel, especially in emerging markets, so too is the potential to succeed.

    We hope you find Flightglobals Airline Employment Trends and Fleet Forecast a useful tool to aid your business planning.

    Murdo MorrisonEditor, Flight International

    executive summary 4

    airline employment

    Employee market share: 2011 5

    Airline employees: historic trends 6

    airline Financials

    Top 150 airlines groups revenue summary 7

    Historic trend based on airline group top 10 (2011) 10


    commercial Fleet

    Current commercial active fleet 11

    Historical commercial active fleet 12

    Fleet Forecast

    Fleet development 2012-2031 13

  • airline employment & fleet forecast trends 2013

    4 | Flightglobal Jobs | Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 | Flightglobal Jobs | 5

    executive summary

    airline employment

    Mainline carriers employ the most people with a market share of 85%

    The leisure carrier market has seen a 61% drop since 2007

    31% and 29% of the airline workforce is based in Asia-Pacific and North America respectively

    There has been a fall of 61,000 employees in North America during the 2007-2011 period

    South America has seen an employment increase of 45% since 2007

    Delta Air Lines is the airline who employs the most people in the world with 78,392 employees in 2011

    airline Financials

    Mainline airlines acumulated total revenues of US$526 billion in 2011

    North American revenues totalled US$205 billion in 2011 with operating results of US$7 billion

    Airlines in Asia-Pacific had the highest net result in 2011 with US$5 billion

    The Lufthansa Group had the largest revenues in 2011 with US$40 billion

    28% of the worlds airline revenues are made by airlines in the US

    commercial Fleet

    There are currently 24,350 active commercial aircraft in the world

    50% of the worlds commercial aircraft are narrowbodies

    45% of the worlds narrowbodies are Boeing 737 while 40% are Airbus A320 family aircraft

    North America is the only region that hasnt achieved growth in the last 20 years in the narrowbody sector

    33%, 26% and 24% of commercial fleet are based in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific respectively

    Asia-Pacific is the region with the most widebodies in the world with more than 1,400 aircraft currently in service

    Fleet Forecast 2012-2031

    37% of the worlds commercial fleet will be based in Asia-Pacific by 2031

    China alone will be operating more than 5,000 aircraft by 2031

    The North American and European mature market expects fleet growth to be low in those regions

    The new entrants in the narrowbody market are the Bombardier CSeries, the Comac C919 and the Irkut MS21

    Strong growth is predicted in the widebody fleet, particularly in Asia-Pacific, China and the Middle East

    Highlights from the reports findings

  • 4 | Flightglobal Jobs | Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 Airline Employment & Fleet Forecast Trends 2013 | Flightglobal Jobs | 5

    North America



    South America

    Middle East

    Africa (3.5%)






    North America



    South America

    Middle East

    Africa (3.5%)



    Regional (3.8%)

    Leisure (0.7%)



    airline employment

    employee market share

    share by airline class: 2011airline class Total employees share

    mainline 1,233,949 84.9%

    low-cost 153,679 10.6%

    regional 54,950 3.8%

    leisure 10,343 0.7%

    total 1,452,921 100.0%

    share by region: 2011region Total employees share

    asia-pacific 442,991 30.5%

    north america 426,111 29.3%

    europe 347,922 23.9%

    south america 108,878 7.5%

    middle east 76,662 5.3%

    africa 50,357 3.5%

    total 1,452,921 100.0%

    The following analysis is based on the Airline Business Top 200 passenger rankings for the reporting year 2011.

    Analysing the key airline types, it is clear to see that mainline carriers employ the most people with a significant market share of 85%. This is not entirely surprising given that 110 mainline operators feature prominen