apache323
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 10:54 pm

Contract VS. Non-Contract Maintenance

Sat Jun 07, 2008 7:16 am

I am currently deployed to Iraq and I have worked along side several civilian contractors and I was wondering based off of what they say what is better, contracted or non-contracted maintenance. Many of the workers have worked for major airlines and also a majority of them have been laid off. I am wondering what has better job security and better pay? I would love to hear some input from those who have worked both types.
 
Buzz
Posts: 694
Joined: Sun Nov 21, 1999 11:44 pm

RE: Contract VS. Non-Contract Maintenance

Sat Jun 07, 2008 9:29 am

Hi Apache323, Buzz here. Your question isn't quite clear, "say again please" (grin)

I've got 24 years in with United, been kind of lucky in that the stations / crews I've worked haven't been shut down - laid off.

Another mechanic is back from being laid off, actually he took a voluntary furlough. He figured the lay off would only last "for the summer". It's been 5 years.
He was at half a dozen companies: some were doing heavy checks on Army helos, a couple were at JettCare doing overnight fixing as required on airlines. I guess that's what we call "on call contract maintenance".

In my opinion, the on call contract maintenance guys are hanging their FAA tickets on the line - if (when) some unhappy thing happens it's easy to take out all the problems on the guy who last signed the logbook. The company I work for has some checks and balances to keep me out of trouble.

An aircraft mechanic takes Responsibility... some people take it lightly. Some people don't want to think about it at all - the "disposable" mentality. But some of us take pride in good workmanship.

What kind of work did you have in mind?

g'day
 
apache323
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 10:54 pm

RE: Contract VS. Non-Contract Maintenance

Sat Jun 07, 2008 10:56 am

To touch up a bit, I was talking mainly government contract work compared with airlines. Which tend to provied better job security, pay, etc. I will soon have to make the decision on which way to go once I get out of the military and I would like to make a somewhat educated decision. Thanks for all replys, I hope that clears up my question.
 
LMP737
Posts: 4800
Joined: Wed May 08, 2002 4:06 pm

RE: Contract VS. Non-Contract Maintenance

Sat Jun 07, 2008 2:27 pm



Quoting Apache323 (Reply 2):
To touch up a bit, I was talking mainly government contract work compared with airlines. Which tend to provied better job security, pay, etc. I will soon have to make the decision on which way to go once I get out of the military and I would like to make a somewhat educated decision. Thanks for all replys, I hope that clears up my question.

Job security and airline jobs are two things one usually does not mention in the same paragraph. With a large number of people still on layoff and more headed that way come the fall you would be hard pressed to get a job in the airline business.

You might want to look into OEM's like Boeing, GE, LMT etc. They are actually hiring right now. If you get a job with one it would look good on a resume if you decide at a future date to get a job with the airlines.
Never take financial advice from co-workers.
 
Dalmd88
Posts: 2391
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2000 3:19 am

RE: Contract VS. Non-Contract Maintenance

Sat Jun 07, 2008 7:55 pm

There is job security in airline jobs. The problem is they tend to be in stations that are very hard to staff because of cost. I know at DL a position at LGA, JFK, BOS, DCA, and SFO are pretty secure. I doubt we will go the contract route for Line staffing at stations of this size. Also if there is another round of layoffs I wouldn't expect anyone to move there an bump out lowtimers.

As for contract for the military, I did that also. It isn't anymore secure than an airline jobs. Some contracts are only for mod work. When the mod is done so are you. If the contractor you are working for loses the next contract you could be out. The next company many times already has people lined up for the job you are doing. If the military mothballs the plane you are supporting, you are out with very little notice. If they move your plane, you are expected to pull up and move, or they get someone else. During my four years of contract work I worked at two differnent bases on a permenet basis and visited a couple of others. Sometimes the relationship between the base personel and the contractors was a little terse. Many didn't like us being there. Most of the mechanics and pilots didn't really care, but many of the support people didn't go out of their way to help us.

You don't really have to make a choice. If you find a good job that fits you, take it. If after a few years the fit isn't as good or it goes away, move on.

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