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lpdal
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Posts: 1997
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2012 9:49 pm

Airline Employees and Outsourcing Around The Globe

Tue Dec 07, 2021 10:06 am

As a mainline TWU represented AA ramper it fascinates me to see airline operations around the globe. However it would seem to me that in places like Europe, and elsewhere, the vast majority of airline ground operations (and to some extent the operation as a whole) are contracted out to companies like Swissport, John Menzies and Co PLC, etc. If I remember correctly, some airlines even contract out pilots and flight attendants (Norwegian Long Haul? Before it went under).

It would seem a simple google search would tell you if an airline had EG its own rampers, but not so. Does Lufthansa have mainline rampers? What about IranAir, or Caribbean Airlines, or any number of abroad airlines?

Also, besides the obvious cost savings on not having to pay out flight benefits and other things like that, why are the vast majority of airline operations in Europe outsourced?

Thanks for all responses.
 
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eta unknown
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Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2001 5:03 am

Re: Airline Employees and Outsourcing Around The Globe

Tue Dec 07, 2021 6:16 pm

The simple answer is labor cost. Europe and Australia, for example, have far more generous employee obligations to pay, be it minimum hours, vacation days, retirement funds- the flight benefits don't come into play at all. A company like Menzies can redeploy staff across different accounts whereas the actual airline doesn't have that flexibility.
 
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zeke
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Re: Airline Employees and Outsourcing Around The Globe

Tue Dec 07, 2021 6:58 pm

lpdal wrote:
Also, besides the obvious cost savings on not having to pay out flight benefits and other things like that, why are the vast majority of airline operations in Europe outsourced?


The industry in general is very different outside of the US. It is very rare outside of the US for airlines to own gates, or control the ramp. Gates are often generic, any airline can use them. The luxury of space for each airline to store ground equipment is not there.

Having contract services saves the passengers money as the service provider can have economies of scale with its workforce servicing multiple airlines, and use its ground equipment across multiple airlines. It is just too expensive to have your own workforce if you only serve that destination once or twice a day.
 
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eta unknown
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Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2001 5:03 am

Re: Airline Employees and Outsourcing Around The Globe

Wed Dec 08, 2021 7:06 am

Further to Zeke's comment above: as an example, SQ served SYD 5x day with A380 & 773 and gave up self handling.

Another example: QF in BNE does ground handling for HA- they actually undercut Menzies. Why- because QF had their own ground staff doing nothing during HA's ground time and QF was legally required to pay them for a 4 hour minimum shift.

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