Finding a contract pilot

tracearabians

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I have a question for everyone . I have a co-pilot that routinely decides to take a day off even after a trip has been scheduled far in advance . I have no problem with him taking off , the problem is he unloads this on me 3-4 days before trip and doesn't lift a finger to get a qualified pilot to take his place . Just would like to know how other flight departments would handle this . This guy has called me the night before a trip and bailed on the trip for some personal reason . Would like to know what policies are in place in other flight departments . Thanks in advance .
 

gern_blanston

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Would like to know what policies are in place in other flight departments.
Do you fly a lot? I mean a LOT? If not, you need to get rid of him.
If there's nothing weird that you're not telling us about the job, he's obviously not too interested in working there and should be replaced.
Seriously. Get rid of the guy and find someone who wants the work.
 

dhc8fo

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Is he salaried? If so, that's easy. Your flight department needs to set the policy and then fire him if he doesn't respect it.

If he is day rate there obviously isn't too much you can do except stop using him. Maybe he is ditching you because he makes more elsewhere? If you like him, maybe pay him more?

I try to honor my obligations in the order in which they are booked, but I would be lying if I said I never backed out of a low paying one for a high paying one. Got to do what you got to do sometimes. That being said, he is running the risk of ruining his reputation, but I have a feeling that he isn't too happy with what he us getting from you.
 

gret

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What size shoe do you wear? Double it and kick the person right up his/her butt.

You got 100 pilots in line for his/her job and if this numbskull doesn't get it, then you should lose your job for letting this go on. You're at risk!

Doesn't your owner every ask why the guy isn't in the cockpit when they're paying for him?

He's taking you for a fool.
 

CorpCaptain

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Is this a young guy or some old retiree? Doesnt sound like a professional. If he continues to pull these sorts of stunts, drop him like a brick. There are plenty of people out there who are willing to work hard. Good luck!
 

roagovols

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A lot of employers require their employees to request time off a minimum number of days/weeks before the date of their vacation.
 

guido411

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We have a set number of days that a pilot can take off with no excuses and the boss will pay for a contract pilot; when that pilot has used his days he can still take the day off but the pilot pays for the contract pilot. Our policy isn't perfect but we have 3 guys and we all like our jobs and we have never come close to using the alocated days.

As for finding a contract pilot, your profile says CE500, shouldn't be too hard to find somebody to fill the seat even on short notice. Ask around the local airports.
 

Gulfstream 200

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I have a question for everyone . I have a co-pilot that routinely decides to take a day off even after a trip has been scheduled far in advance . I have no problem with him taking off , the problem is he unloads this on me 3-4 days before trip and doesn't lift a finger to get a qualified pilot to take his place . Just would like to know how other flight departments would handle this . This guy has called me the night before a trip and bailed on the trip for some personal reason . Would like to know what policies are in place in other flight departments . Thanks in advance .

Is this guy an employee or a contract guy?

We are small and dont have much Policy. We have 3 Captains and we put time we want off on our shared calendar. We cover for each other and always assure the plane could be crewed. We dont use contract pilots.

I would never hire/keep/contract a guy who bails off a trip the night before for "personal" reasons....one needs to be sick or have an emergency for that.

And no, there are not hundreds of guys lining up to do the job these days. Finding a truly good, qualified guy to fit your operation is a LOT harder than people think. Good people usually have to be persuaded to leave their current job. Hire random unemployed guy and you often wind up with exactly what is going on here...

Who runs your department? They may want to have a chat with Mr. Team Player while searching for a good replacement.

Good Luck!
 

G4G5

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Our policy is:

All vacation is requested on Jan 1. At that point it is evenly distributed based upon requests. Ex, Last year you had July 4th, so someone else gets it this year( if requested). Last year you had first choice this year another guy goes first.

All requested vacation and personal days along with training are scheduled by Feb 1. Now the year is scheduled. If you choose not to use all of your vacation or want to change a week, that's fine as long as it does not conflict with another pilots time off or a pre existing trip.

Doctors visits and such alike are handled at the first of the month and are granted based upon that months flying schedule. Do not schedule a dentist visit the same week that someone else is on vacation or in training and then get surprised when you have to fly.

If you try to pull a day off at the last minute during a scheduled trip. then you are given the time off only if a suitable contractor is available and you must take the entire week. None of this: I need Saturday off for a last minute whatever and I only want to use one day, just so I can get out of the airline reposition leg to Anchorage for the week in Asia.
 

Wankel7

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Maybe having a schedule for the pilots would give you more predictability?
 

Gulfstream 200

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Maybe having a schedule for the pilots would give you more predictability?


Yes, 2 pilots.

Here's your schedule: You are needed 24/7/365 unless otherwise arranged and approved. Keep in mind approved time off is often a sore subject for one reason or another. A spineless department manager (far too common) compounds this.

One needs to have a full understanding going into a 2 pilot operation. Big red flags are:

"we are looking to get a 3rd pilot" (says you needed to long ago as its obviously an issue thats come up)

"We can use contractors if needed" (have X amount of days been already budgeted so you don't analyze my request for a day off and weight it againt what it will cost?)

"Its mostly pleasure flying" (gone every weekend to Aspen, Vail, Nantucket, or Palm Beach. Who need time off when you go to such beautiful places?)

Its all part of the game. Know what you are signing up for even if you have to read between the lines. Dont complain if you didnt do your homework.
 

rondo

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I have a question for everyone . I have a co-pilot that routinely decides to take a day off even after a trip has been scheduled far in advance . I have no problem with him taking off , the problem is he unloads this on me 3-4 days before trip and doesn't lift a finger to get a qualified pilot to take his place . Just would like to know how other flight departments would handle this . This guy has called me the night before a trip and bailed on the trip for some personal reason . Would like to know what policies are in place in other flight departments . Thanks in advance .

How about a policy that says show up for work or kick rocks.
 

jet2work

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Assuming that you are flying the CE500 in your profile; the next time you go to recurrent, tell him that you are getting the Single Pilot endorsement. Maybe he will wake up and smell the coffee. If not, at least you are covered until you can find his replacement.
 

Fly91

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I have a question for everyone . I have a co-pilot that routinely decides to take a day off even after a trip has been scheduled far in advance . I have no problem with him taking off , the problem is he unloads this on me 3-4 days before trip and doesn't lift a finger to get a qualified pilot to take his place . Just would like to know how other flight departments would handle this . This guy has called me the night before a trip and bailed on the trip for some personal reason . Would like to know what policies are in place in other flight departments . Thanks in advance .

Basically, your letting a jerkoff walk all over you and your owner....and that jerkoff should be happy to have a job.

Get rid of that loser....
 

Flying Biker

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And here I have the opposite problem. I was called up by a company to do some contract work for them. They just got a new turbine a/c and their pilot, who has zero time in it, just went to class and got his type and a single pilot waiver for it but the insurance was requiring him to get 25 hours with an experienced pilot in that a/c before they would give him the blessing. Because I own my own company now, I rearranged my work schedule and even canceled a horseback camping trip with some friends so that I could help this company out.

They had me scheduled for about 3 trips a month for the next 3 months. The first trip I was suppose to do got cancelled the day before. OK that happens, no big deal. Then the next trip came up and again the evening before the trip, their pilot calls me up and tells me that the owners want to save money and that they do not want to pay for a second pilot and its "just a short trip anyways" so they are not going to use me for this trip. I then advised him that I am cancelling all the scheduled trips with them and if they really need me, to call me 2 days before and I will see what I can do. Flying is not my life anymore and I was bending over backwards to help them out. I knew this bridge was a short one, that is why I accepted the temp job. What really pisses me off, is they are the ones who called me, I was not out soliciting. It did cross my mind to invoice them for some of the time due to the inconvenience.
 

CorpCaptain

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It did cross my mind to invoice them for some of the time due to the inconvenience.


When I was flying contract I had a provision that if the said company cancelled within 3 days I wouldnt invoice them. If there was a mechanical, or inside 3 days the DO would have a bill sitting on his desk Monday:D Look at the bright side. Atleast your out of this rat race, that in itself should make your day.
 

Flying Biker

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Look at the bright side. Atleast your out of this rat race, that in itself should make your day.


Your absolutely right! Sometimes I forget how I was treated in the aviation world but these little reminders just kind of slaps one in the face. It just amazes me how someone can go and by a multimillion dollar aircraft just to skimp on pilots and safety all in the name of saving $1500.00.
 

Nolife

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Your absolutely right! Sometimes I forget how I was treated in the aviation world but these little reminders just kind of slaps one in the face. It just amazes me how someone can go and by a multimillion dollar aircraft just to skimp on pilots and safety all in the name of saving $1500.00.

It's simply lack of respect for pilots and safety from the owners and that comes from their lack of experience with aviation. Their pilot/manager should have explained this to them however it wasn't done. The view is that if the plane can be flown single pilot why waste the money for the other guy who would do nothing but fill the seat. I see this all the time.

The one that gets me are the folks who own an airplane, typically a King Air or Citation, and use only contract pilots. Then one day no one is available for their trip and the owners and the airplane manager are mad that they missed a trip. Had a guy get mad at me for saying no when I already had a trip booked with someone else. If you can afford the airplane you can afford the pilot salary; end of story.
 
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