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The next 5 yrs at Flex

NJAowner

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I realize this will be a very incendiary post, but I will ask anyway.

Last night I had dinner with a good friend of mine who is coming to the end of his FLOPs contract. I do not know the numbers but he says they are giving him an amazing deal to say for another 5 years. I started talking a little about what I read here, but would love it for someone would answer a few questions for me, justra few sentences per questions -- feel free to PM is you are more comfortable.

1. What exactly is the current status of the pilot negotiations/mediation/etc. and what are the next milestones?
2. What do you see as the "pros" and "cons" of Red Label from the pilots perspective?
3. What should an owner be concerned with about Red Label and the future direction of Flex?
4. Anything else you would like to share.

In a new and novel approach for FI, I would appreciate not getting answers such as "run fast" or "its awesome". Some specifics would be helpful.

Thanks.
 

jetmaster727

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So after months of stalling they finally agree to implement the arbitrated contract. Pilots should be happ; some overdue dollars are coming.

if you are really a NetJet owner, why do you care ?
 

NJAowner

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Jetmaster ... after well more than a decade on this board, helping out quite a few of you with questions, advice and support in times of need ... I will not even answer.
 

jetmaster727

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Jetmaster ... after well more than a decade on this board, helping out quite a few of you with questions, advice and support in times of need ... I will not even answer.[/

i gave you you some good info! No need to be a jackass
 

shanes123

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Ignore the ignorance NJAOWNER

1.theres the first reason to not sign anything with this company Lack of Proffesionalism in the Flex pilot Group
2. This management will never ever work with this union straight from CEOs mouth
3.Red Label is a hand picked group of yes men that will do anything to get job done ( see 452FX thread not a program I would put my family in)

Hope this helps
Merry Christmas
 

EngineThunder

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It's not just Red Label that are running planes off of runways. Google N362FX.

Merry Christmas
 

Propilot77

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Ignore the ignorance NJAOWNER

1.theres the first reason to not sign anything with this company Lack of Proffesionalism in the Flex pilot Group

Wow! Throwing stones are we Shane! Ummm, Coming from someone who could have read the term "PROFESSIONALISM" prior to a "SWEET SPOT"....errr.ummm.....I mean flying an airplane maybe you would have learned the definition of "PROFESSIONALISM".........NOOOOO????
 

NJAowner

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Jetmaster -- my sincere apology. But after about 15 years on this board, I have probably fielded a comment like that 1000 times. The fact is in the business world we call it "due diligence" and "monitoring". I am continually surprised that pilots think we can not find a board like this or ask questions. We are not all the CEOs of Fortune 50 companies with huge staffs.

Merry Christmas.
 

jetmaster727

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Merry Christmas to you too.

i would think if you had done "due diligence" you would know exactly what is going on at Flex.
Finally we have a union contract in place and while many improvements need to be made at least the pilots have job protections for the first time. One thing Flex pilots have never done is let the owners know about some of the crap the company tries to pull. The pilots have always lived under a cloud of fear. That's over now.

As for Red Label; great for the crews, more money and make your own schedule which makes for happy pilots and therefore happy owners.

- - - Updated - - -

Hey Pro, what'd you think! Finally we can speak
 

doh

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1. What exactly is the current status of the pilot negotiations/mediation/etc. and what are the next milestones?
We have an arbitrated interim contract which puts in writing what each side had as policy and contract before. We are still not treated equally. We now need to negotiate a contract that Accomplishes equal treatment for all.
2. What do you see as the "pros" and "cons" of Red Label from the pilots perspective?
For the pilots selected for red label, there are no cons. You make more money and you pick your ideal schedule. The cons are only 23% of the pilots were selected for red label. It wasn’t done in seniority order, and only that small fraction of the pilots are allowed to participate. This is causing a toxic environment. There is no motivation whatsoever for those of us who are paid 40% less to step up when things go wrong. Management has made it crystal clear that no matter what we do, no matter how hard we work, we will not be allowed to be a
part of this program. So the left seat guy is red label and the other guy is getting screwed. In the past when things went wrong, everyone was hustling to recover. Own 77% of us are sitting back and waiting for someone else to step up. I’ve read article after article on toxic work environments in the last year or so. I want to understand what is happening here because it used to be ideal at Bombardier. These articles all talk about employees undermining the organization, not because they intend to, but because they have given up. And that is what we are seeing now. I flew with a non red label captain a little while ago. They wanted us to do a recovery. He told them we needed a flight plan. Then he sat in the back and read the paper. In the past we would have been calling every five minutes to get that flight plan. Now, we wait for it without reminding them. An hour later we still did not have the flight plan for the recovery. That is the problem with unjustified disparite treatment of employees. And that is the problem with red label.
3. What should an owner be concerned with about Red Label and the future direction of Flex?
I think I covered the concerns above.
4. Anything else you would like to share

- - - Updated - - -


1. What exactly is the current status of the pilot negotiations/mediation/etc. and what are the next milestones?
We have an arbitrated interim contract which puts in writing what each side had as policy and contract before. We are still not treated equally. We now need to negotiate a contract that Accomplishes equal treatment for all.
2. What do you see as the "pros" and "cons" of Red Label from the pilots perspective?
For the pilots selected for red label, there are no cons. You make more money and you pick your ideal schedule. The cons are only 23% of the pilots were selected for red label. It wasn’t done in seniority order, and only that small fraction of the pilots are allowed to participate. This is causing a toxic environment. There is no motivation whatsoever for those of us who are paid 40% less to step up when things go wrong. Management has made it crystal clear that no matter what we do, no matter how hard we work, we will not be allowed to be a
part of this program. So the left seat guy is red label and the other guy is getting screwed. In the past when things went wrong, everyone was hustling to recover. Own 77% of us are sitting back and waiting for someone else to step up. I’ve read article after article on toxic work environments in the last year or so. I want to understand what is happening here because it used to be ideal at Bombardier. These articles all talk about employees undermining the organization, not because they intend to, but because they have given up. And that is what we are seeing now. I flew with a non red label captain a little while ago. They wanted us to do a recovery. He told them we needed a flight plan. Then he sat in the back and read the paper. In the past we would have been calling every five minutes to get that flight plan. Now, we wait for it without reminding them. An hour later we still did not have the flight plan for the recovery. That is the problem with unjustified disparite treatment of employees. And that is the problem with red label.
3. What should an owner be concerned with about Red Label and the future direction of Flex?
I think I covered the concerns above.
4. Anything else you would like to share
 

Imissmypilot

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1. What exactly is the current status of the pilot negotiations/mediation/etc. and what are the next milestones?
2. What do you see as the "pros" and "cons" of Red Label from the pilots perspective?
3. What should an owner be concerned with about Red Label and the future direction of Flex?
4. Anything else you would like to share.

Thanks.

No family obligations today so I'll take a shot:

1.) Pilots have an arbitrated "temporary" MCBA. It is not nearly good enough and attrition will continue to happen at the same rapid pace we've been observing unless management takes longterm negotiations seriously. So far the company has stalled at every juncture, including frivolous lawsuits, but recently (2 days ago) agreed to honor the MCBA. We'll see how it goes but it's too soon to tell.

Kenn Ricci has verbally expressed a complete disdain for the pilot's union and has said he will always refuse to negotiate or deal with them. He is encouraging a current decertification/in-house campaign that will further murky the waters with stalled negotiations, lawsuits, drama etc...

In my personal opinion, unless management changes their tactics the union issue for OneSky is a huge problem and will continue to be long and drawn out. This has been to Kenn Ricci's own detriment but he is like a 5 year old who wants his way regardless. I'm not being cute or facetious; it is that ridiculous.

2.) Red Label has a few serious issues. From the pilot side, it can lead to complacency which is the #1 safety issue pilots deal with. It has gotten so bad the company is reportedly asking for security footage from the FBO's to verify preflight checks are occurring. The company knows it's a huge issue.

Additionally, the bonus structure is set up to encourage pilots to be extra flexible with writeups, duty time, safety etc... Pilots in the program are also encouraged to work long tours (8+), another safety issue. One day this will catch up to them, the alleged FAR violations (and possible felonies with alleged adjusting of books & logs) might result in an unexpected grounding of the fleet. Do you want to be counting on a plane or crew that could be unexpectedly grounded?

From the owner side, the service is no different so why would you need to be in an exclusive program? Literally everything is the same except the interiors. In some cases RL planes are more trashed because of the incentives to fly them continously. I understand they are giving him a great deal but why are they slashing prices? If your friend needs a good deal to stay in private aviation, maybe he's not meant to be in private aviation. You get what you pay for.

Kenn Ricci is famous for making up on the back end what he gives away on the front end. Beware, that good deal might end up costing him.

3.) I like Silvestro, the current CEO. He seems to get it. But the rest of management is all competing for the idiot award as Ricci yes men. As long as Ricci is involved in the day to day operations (which will be always regardless of what is said - he is a micromanager) the company will continue to have labor issues. They need to turn the reins over to Silvestro and otherwise clean house. Additionally, they need to hire competent schedulers and stop this ridiculous SOP of not hiring professional, certified office personel.

The pilot shortage is real. Unless the company changes it practices, expect a diminishing quality and skill level of pilot. Once again, if they get serious and change their tactics they might be able to pull a hail mary and save it on this front but it will have to be immediate and drastic. I would not risk a 5 year contract when it's reasonable to see every pilot in 3 years will be ancient or inexperienced. Every qualified pilot under 60 here is at least looking for other employment unless they are Red Label.

The pay and benefits are substandard. The work rules are substandard. If they are slashing prices that tells me management is not looking to improve their pilot attraction. That would worry me as a potential owner (and as a pilot looking)
4.) Remember your #1 resource in this industry are your pilots, regardless of whichever company you choose. Sales, services, scheduling can and will lie to you and not look out for you. However, because of face to face long term nature of the relationship it is unlikely a pilot will. Help them out by expressing an interest in their betterment when negotiating contracts. 95% of owners don't tip us because (I'm assuming) you consider us professionals a step above your concierge, driver or waiter. So then why do you allow for us to be treated as indentured servants when you negotiate these contracts knowing we are abused and underpaid? Either start tipping or start talking about your support of us to management including a willingness to leave for greener pastures.

When scheduling, request well rested pilots. Refuse to fly with a pilot on duty for more than 8 hours or 7 days especially in weather. That would go a long way in helping the safety issue and making sure you are put on a list of owners who care about these things. Trust me being on those owner watch lists is a good thing and awards you with certain benefits you won't even be aware of.

Another option, if I ran into a ton of money tommorow and became an owner, I don't know if I'd do fractional. I would consider owning and hiring a full time, well paid aircraft manager and utilize contract for my right seat. Takes care of every problem I see from my perspective. But alas perhaps my "vision" is why I'm in the front and you're in the back.

Another thing I'd like to add is don't be automatically reflexive because of personal business concerns or political ideology regarding the union issue. Except in the scenario I listed above as a single or small group owner there is no way I would risk my money in this industry with a non unionized pilot group. Unions are now industry standard. They are the ones pushing for safety, reliability, standards etc.

In this industry, a non unionized larger sized company just simply will not be cheaper let alone as safe, reliable or professional. This is your life at 35,000 feet. Remember Colgan. Do you want to risk your family, your business, your employees and all that you've built to save a few bucks or let a man-child get his way?

Oh, and Merry Christmas. I'm happy to work today, but remember I did so you can enjoy your holiday. Sure I get paid but a little appreciation goes a long, long way.
 

jetmaster727

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Domestic Red Label was done by seniority if you signed up. Those that didn't got left behind; their own fault.

Also complacency has nothing to do with Red Label. You are either a good pilot or your not
 

shanes123

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BFS. It was most certainly NOT done by seniority. Maybe 2 N kens version of seniority. But no one else’s
 

Imissmypilot

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Domestic Red Label was done by seniority if you signed up. Those that didn't got left behind; their own fault.

Also complacency has nothing to do with Red Label. You are either a good pilot or your not

Bull****. Self justifying much? Tell that to dozens of pilots who were passed over for special picks. The team concept is ridiculously high school.

I had this very discussion with one of the union leaders who happens to be in Red Label not to mention dozens of others. I have done my research as well.

The general consensus is if you are benefitting you are too deluded to see the truth of it, even if you are union supportive.

My biggest departure from wanting to be involved in this union is my inherent disagreement with all things Red Label. The union fought to protect you guys. You have no idea what they protected you from. I thought they should have let you guys twist in the wind. They didn't.

It's Christmas so I don't want to say FU for your post. But any other day I'd tell you what a self deluded prick you are...
 
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jetmaster727

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Normally I would tell you to go F ur self but since it's xmas give you benefit of the doubt.

You are right when it comes to international red label. Placements were by the good ol boy system. Not so in domestic red label. Obviously you don't know what you are talking about
 

Imissmypilot

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Ah good. Glad to see we can trade some light hearted barbs without it getting out of control.

Seriously though JetMaster you are the one who doesn't know what you're talking about. The team concept has made and is making it possible for pilots (some of whom could not hold craft type captain at the time of their placement in RL) to leapfrog over other pilots who should have gotten those slots.

The fact is RL both types is not given in pure seniority order and that's a problem.

Sure the team concept depends on individuals who can work well together but only to a limited extent since the reality is they are seldom paired anyway.

The truth is special consideration is given in all sorts of ways still to this day. Look at the DS situation. Look at new metal assignments. But that's another discussion. Let's get back to pure straight seniority.

We use the POC Red Label standouts as an example. Out of the 3 who were in the program 2/3 of them could not hold that position on seniority AT ALL. They were barely 45 captains (one might have still been an FO). They got those positions despite those facts and despite the fact guys 100 numbers senior to them were waiting months longer or still have not gotten an assignment.

Why should someone who should best case scenario be a 45 Captain make 100k more than an actual 300 Captain?

Straight seniority is not part of the Red Label Program. Prove me wrong. You red label people try so hard to justify it but if you'd pull back for one minute and look at reality you'd see the problem.

You got yours. Good for you. Enjoy the money. But don't pretend it didn't happen on the backs of other people.
 

GlorifiedCabbie

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Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. That reminds me, what ever happened to the Christmas bonus the Options pilots once got?
 
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