DL787932ER
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Delta To Hire Out More Of Its Work

Tue Jan 24, 2006 12:34 pm

Atlanta Journal-Constitution article

I hope these cuts can be done as much as possible through attrition, and that anyone furloughed can either return or quickly find other employment. But, from the article:

"Charaf said the carrier also will outsource more maintenance work to outside contractors to save money."

Doesn't TOC "insource" work, doing maintenance for other carriers? Their website sure seems like it's advertising to do maintenance for other carriers. Why would DL sell maintenance services to other airlines, but outsource its own work?

[Edited 2006-01-24 04:43:17]
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dl757md
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RE: Delta To Hire Out More Of Its Work

Tue Jan 24, 2006 1:48 pm

Quoting DL787932ER (Thread starter):
Why would DL sell maintenance services to other airlines, but outsource its own work?

Good question. Charaf's pat answer is that we'll outsource the work that can be done outside cheaper and insource higher paying contract work. Sounds great in theory but one thing Delta Tech Ops in my opinion doesn't know how to do is write a contract that benefits Delta. We've lost many contracts after we began them because we couldn't possibly comply with the idiotic terms that Delta agreed to. Case in point, the contract to paint United's airplanes from white to blue/gray was lost after the first six months because Delta unnecessarily agreed to sand all composites and the entire wing with no coarser than 320 grit sand paper. It took weeks to remove the paint this way with 20 man crews working 24/7. Not only did we blow through the contracted 3 week painting time for a 747 but we went way over the flat labor cost billed to United of $225,000. We persuaded the United tech reps to let us use 80 grit, work up to 320, and the job got done ahead of schedule with equal quality. At the end of the first six months (a trial period which upon successful conclusion, would result in a 3 year contract for the entire United fleet) United's managers found out about the deviation from the contract and pulled it from us.

When Delta sent out heavy maintenance they said it would save $250M over five years. After the first overhauls they realized that they didn't include the corrosion visits in with the HMV contracts. Oops! What's an HMV for if not for corrosion? They never have to my knowledge disclosed how much they are being charged to do them, but it's not too hard to imagine that corrosion visits on fleet the size of Delta's would cost a large portion, if not more of, $250M over 5 years.

So what are the real savings? I suppose we'll never know because Delta will never tell us. Rest assured the 3000 Delta mechanics that have or soon will lose their jobs have sacrificed for a very paltry sum.

Quoting DL787932ER (Thread starter):
Charaf said the carrier also will outsource more maintenance work to outside contractors to save money

Charaf is an ass. Delta line mtc. was $40m over budget in fiscal 2003. To make up the shortcoming they bid on several "hangar" jobs that were opened up for bid to outside contractors. The biggest of these that we got was the modification of the 767-300ER business-elite cabins. Purportedly we bid $10/hr less than the next lowest bidder. In addition to covering all of our usual work on live flights and overnight checks we completed these mods under budget and ahead of schedule. We have been given no other real opportunity to duplicate this since Tony took the helm. He's not interested in saving jobs or giving the best mechanics in the industry a chance to make a difference. He may say he does, but his actions truly speak differently.

Those line mechanics that demonstrated above how valuable they are to the company, well, April 1st fully 1/3 of them, some 500, will no longer be welcome at DL.

And of the 9000 job cuts company wide announced last year of which the article states these are part of, 3000, fully 1/3 are in maintenance with most of them being mechanics.

As someone said recently, "Good goes around my ass".

DL757Md

[Edited 2006-01-24 06:14:00]
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DL787932ER
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RE: Delta To Hire Out More Of Its Work

Tue Jan 24, 2006 1:56 pm

Quoting Dl757md (Reply 1):
Charaf is an ass.

I'm very sorry to hear that. With one of the largest, if not the largest ETOPS fleet in the world, increasingly high utilization, and so many decades of experience, DL must have one of the best mechanical operations going. It's a shame if poor leadership hurts it and its people.

I've heard many good things aboute Whitehurst from the crew side of the business. I hope DL can also find the leadership they need from the tech side.
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dl757md
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RE: Delta To Hire Out More Of Its Work

Tue Jan 24, 2006 2:31 pm

Quoting DL787932ER (Reply 2):
DL must have one of the best mechanical operations going. It's a shame if poor leadership hurts it and its people.

As a dedicated Delta AMT and a human being it's particularly painful to witness it firsthand. Thanks for your concern.

Quoting DL787932ER (Reply 2):
I've heard many good things about Whitehurst from the crew side of the business. I hope DL can also find the leadership they need from the tech side.

I don't know much about Whitehurst but from the little I do know he sounds promising. I've said for a long time Delta needs someone with a fresh perspective and vision. I hope he can deliver.

As for leadership on the Tech side, don't count on Charaf being replaced anytime soon. I don't think he plans to leave in the near future and I've heard of no discontent with his slash and burn style from Grinstein or the board, not that I would be privy to that info. It's like how the stock market reacts to layoffs. The stock price rises because of the immediate perceived savings. No one seems to care about the long term effects. Just make a buck today.

DL757Md
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DL787932ER
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RE: Delta To Hire Out More Of Its Work

Tue Jan 24, 2006 3:18 pm

Quoting Dl757md (Reply 3):

As a dedicated Delta AMT and a human being it's particularly painful to witness it firsthand.

I can only imagine. As a loyal DL flyer, I greatly appreciate all the mx work necessary to keep the widgets in the air, and I very much hope that at some point the right decisions can be made to both return DL to profitability and keep the excellent tech staff.

Quoting Dl757md (Reply 3):
I don't know much about Whitehurst but from the little I do know he sounds promising. I've said for a long time Delta needs someone with a fresh perspective and vision. I hope he can deliver.

Most of my firsthand knowledge comes from my mother, who's been a DL FA for over 36 years. She likes him and thinks he has the right attitude and ideas that DL needs, and I'd certainly take her word for it. I do hope that attitude becomes pervasive throughout DL management.

(By the way, since I mentioned I'm the son of an employee, I feel it's only fair to mention that these days I get my DL tickets from delta.com like anyone else, as I'm over the age of being "immediate family" and an S-3B doesn't get one very far these days with an average load of over 80%. I still hope I'll get to see the new BizElite product on an NRSA pass to CDG this summer  Silly)
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Dalmd88
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RE: Delta To Hire Out More Of Its Work

Tue Jan 24, 2006 11:27 pm

Charaf is a puppet. The plan from his boss, Kolshak, was get rid of everything that takes more than five days. Even if a 30 day check goes late and we have to go back and do rework it is OK if we get it done cheap enough. They keep saying quality matters, but if you say a lie enough you begin to belive it.

The Line station cuts that are being put in place will bite us just like the outsourced heavy checks will. Aircraft reliablity will keep going down and sooner or later there will be a smoking hole in the ground.