As the aviation industry starts preparing for the future, airlines have started hiring again and with a number of pilots made redundant in 2020 because of COVID-19, competition will be tough, so how can you stand out!
When applying for a job, in any industry, you want to give yourself the best chance when applying. What airlines look for when assessing direct entry pilots is talent and quality, both on the individual applying but also where they completed their flight training.
Where you complete your MCC can make all the difference in getting an assessment with an airline and here is why…
What is an MCC?
A Multi-Crew Cooperation (MCC) course is designed to train single flying pilots how to learn and adapt to work as part of a multi-crew. An MCC course does not teach a solo pilot how to fly, as they have learned these skills throughout the various stages of their training (PPL/CPL, ME and IR) but to teach cadets how to fly and communication as a team.
Also, the MCC is a legal requirement to fly and operation a multi-crew commercial aircraft.
Why MCC training is different compared to the rest of your training?
The importance and purpose of the training is in the name, Multi-Crew-Coordination (MCC).
Typically, most cadets who start an MCC will have flown solo for the majority of their flight training or at least in the company of an instructor. This will change once you fly for a commercial airline, who all use multi-crew aircraft.
Until now, you have been responsible for every aspect of the operation of a flight from planning, pre-flight checking, flying, cockpit checks, radio communications, descent and landing. The MCC course takes the skills you have learned until now and adapts them to work in a multi-crew environment and learn procedures used in everyday airline operations.
You will learn the necessary protocols and methods of communication for the safe operation of a complex, multi-crew, jet aircraft. During the course, you will be introduced to the competencies necessary for this demanding transition from light aircraft to a commercial jet. Your training will take place throughout all phases of flight under normal, abnormal and emergency conditions.
This is most important as for a direct entry pilot applying for a job, the assessor will be judging a potential pilot on their ability to communication effectively, their ability to scan and most importantly the chemistry they bring to a multi-crew partnership. This is essential for a larger airline who the Captain and Co-pilot might only work together several times throughout a calendar year.
The MCC course can vary in length, depending on which ATO and training provider you use. All MCC courses must have 25 hours of theoretical knowledge instruction and exercises; and 20 hours of practical MCC training.
The below is an overview of what a cadet will learn when completing an MCC course.
|Communications||Decision Making & Discussion|
Weight & Balance
Philosophy & Standard Calls Standard
|Operational Procedures Cockpit|
The importance of an ATO’s reputation.
When airlines are looking at the CV of a direct entry pilot, the first place they look is to see where they completed their MCC course as this will be the most relevant to the airline. Especially as their will be a number of pilots, new and experienced competing for the same roles and airlines.
A proven Aviation Training Organisation (ATO) will have been established for a number of years, so will have experience working and teach new cadets, a reputation which is known within the industry, both amongst flight schools and airlines, while having a roster of experience instructors who are fundamental to the success of an MCC training provider.
When thinking of MCC providers, it would be worth checking which have partnerships with airlines as this shows the ATO has been vetted by at least one airline, but also see if they have a working relationship with airlines. It is an extra bonus if the ATO has experience working and training airlines, this will certainly help a cadet when applying for a job.
Quality of your instructors.
The instructors are the key to an ATOs success and this will be based on the quality and experience of the instructors. Europe has a lot of experience in aviation and under EASA is the most regulated region globally in terms of quality, guidelines and safety.
As you near the end of your training, you want to finish on a high and get the best possible training for your money. When doing your research, speak with a member of the ATO (ideally in a Covid19 free world, even visit the facilities) and ask them about their instructors.
Experienced instructors should have a background in training with an airline, such as a TRI/TRE or a training captain. Again, due to the standards of training amongst European airlines, the instructors will have a high level of training standards and the experience to match.
The simulators involved?
A number of MCC providers off you a variety of sims and aircraft variety. It is best to thing practical and ask yourself – ‘which aircraft is best suited to my training?’.
While all devices must be a certificated FNPT II simulator, full motions sims are unnecessary and actually add an extra layer of complexity to your training. The best sims are those that allow you focus on the MCC aspect of your training – the multi crew coordination and communications – without over complicating the process, while also using a device that gives you a fair and accurate representation of a real aircraft.
Why a JOC is important.
A lot of ATOs only offer an MCC with the JOC added on as an extra part of the course if you pay for it. While the MCC is the legal requirement, the JOC is also requested by nearly every commercial airline, even ones which don’t operate jet aircraft.
This is an important factor to consider and include when picking an MCC provider, make sure they offer the JOC as a combined package. It is most logical, practical and usually cost affective to complete a combined MCC/JOC course when the time comes.
Why cadets Chose Simtech Aviation.
“One of the main reasons I chose Simtech was that it has a great reputation within the industry and has world class instructors. It was recommended to me by several pilots from various different airlines and I myself have recommended Simtech to several pilots since I completed the course. Reputation in the airline industry is very important and some airlines would feel more comfortable hiring a new pilot who trained in a school with a good reputation, they would at least have an idea of standard of training this person would have received”. – Luke O Sullivan
“All the instructors at Simtech have experience flying for airlines, but more importantly, they have years of experience successfully instructing it and the two don’t necessarily come together. So, it’s important to make sure you’re picking the best course you can with a team that not only know how to do it, but also how to teach it. Before Simtech I was doing everything myself and then suddenly there’s another person and you’ve got to work as a team and share tasks. It was a little overwhelming at first, but the calmness and experience of the instructors really helped with the transition”. Will Barney