Monday, September 05, 2011

Emirates craves cool factor in drive to hire 4,000 crew

Emirates needs to boost flight attendant numbers by a third to 16,000 during the year through March
Emirates needs to boost flight attendant numbers by a third to 16,000 during the year through March
Emirates, the largest international airline, is advertising 4,000 cabin-crew jobs via online music provider Spotify as it strives to attract international staff for the world’s biggest fleet of Airbus superjumbos.
Emirates needs to boost flight attendant numbers by a third to 16,000 during the year through March as it adds five double- deck, 517-seat A380s, for a total of 20. Ads on Facebook, the No. 1 social website, may follow as the Dubai-based company seeks English-speaking, tech-savvy recruits aged from 21 to 30.
With Qatar Airways and Abu Dhabi’s Etihad also adding staff, Emirates aims to leverage its status as long-haul market leader to become employer of choice among would-be cabin crew, akin to Apple in computing and Nike in sporting goods, advertising manager Sardar Khan said in an interview.
“We’ve growing rapidly and that presents a massive hiring challenge,” Khan said. “Apple and Nike are aspirational brands and we like to think of ourselves as in that league. Your friends are going to think, wow, you’re working for them?”
Apple rose three places to 17th in last year’s 100-company Best Global Brands ranking from Interbrand, posting the biggest gain in recognition, while Nike advanced one spot to 25th.
The maker of the iPhone also came 18th in a 2010 ranking of the 50 most attractive employers from recruitment-branding consultant Universum. Coca-Cola and Google were placed top of the two surveys, while airlines were absent from both.
Like other Gulf sheikdoms, Dubai is heavily reliant on foreign workers, who make up 90 percent of the 1.97 million- strong population.
“I certainly don’t think you’d have much in the way of UAE nationals,” said John Strickland, an aviation analyst at JLS Consulting Ltd. in London. “A flight I went on to Dubai in 2010 had British, Malaysians and Brazilians in the crew. Emirates offers a reasonable package. In terms of salary it’s always said levels are lower than in Europe, but then there’s less tax.”
Emirates flight attendants start on a basic annual salary of about AED47,000 ($12,800), plus hourly flying pay, a fixed monthly cash sum based on their role and competencies, free housing and transport, and an annual payment from a profit- sharing plan. At British Airways the starting salary is about £15,000 ($25,000) a year, before supplementary sums.
The 30-second Emirates ad on Spotify prompts listeners to think of the best reasons to move to Dubai, before listing key attractions including its “cosmopolitan” nature, sunny climate and “superb restaurants and sports and leisure facilities.”
Founded in Sweden and based in London, Spotify offers access to 15 million songs and claims 10 million users in seven countries in Europe, where it’s the No. 2 digital-music platform after Apple’s iTunes, according to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. It debuted in the US last month.
“Spotify has the x-factor in that it’s perceived as a dynamic brand with a product that’s regarded as best of breed,” said Mark Mulligan, an independent new media and music analyst in London, adding that the company is luring major advertisers after establishing the validity of a model that, while online, initially “looked and felt pretty much like radio.”
Emirates hasn’t given up more traditional hiring methods and will hold 77 recruitment fairs through Nov. 5, almost two per day, in countries as far apart as the Armenia, Paraguay, New Zealand and the U.K. English is the only linguistic prerequisite, though the carrier employs 130 nationalities speaking 80 languages.
Crew must also be educated to at least high-school level, be able to stretch 2.12 meters on tiptoe to reach emergency gear, and have “a positive attitude with the natural ability to provide excellent service working within a team environment, dealing with people from all cultures.”
Online ad budgets are forecast to total $132.1bn by 2015, almost double last year’s $68.1bn, and to comprise 22 percent of total media spending, according to eMarketer, a New York-based digital media and marketing research firm.
“For Emirates, as a public-facing brand, being seen to experiment with these platforms is an intelligent move because it shows that they are willing to understand and connect with people on the topics they’re interested in and in the places where they spend time,” said Tim Callington, head of digital and social media at public relations firm Edelman.
Emirates has orders for 90 superjumbos with 45,000 seats and a list price of $34bn. Each A380 needs 26 staff: four pilots, 20 flight attendants and two washroom workers who tend to premium shower cubicles. Its Boeing Co. 777s require 16 crew.
The Arab carrier is building the fleet to establish Dubai as an inter-continental hub and win passengers from Air France- KLM Group, British Airways and Deutsche Lufthansa while fending off Qatar Air and Etihad. It will resist cutting flights as oil prices threaten the profitability of some destinations and instead aims to stir up demand with cheaper tickets, President Tim Clark said in an interview on June 20.
Qatar Air, the second-biggest Middle Eastern airline, has 91 jetliners in its fleet, 56 of them widebodies, with 172 on order, of which 160 are twin-aisle. Including retirements, it may operate 190 planes by 2020, 60 more than previously envisaged, CEO Akbar al Baker said in a June interview.
Etihad, the regional No. 3, is pursuing a less expansive growth plan, according to CEO James Hogan. The carrier has 57 wide-body planes, with 103 jets due for delivery in the coming decade, including 10 A380s, 25 Airbus A350s and 35 Boeing 787s.
Foster the most positive public image, though, and Emirates will succeed in fending off rivals to recruit the cream of the cabin-crew crop, according to advertising chief Khan.
“You want to be the brand that’s on tip of people’s tongues, that your neighbours are going to recommend,” he said.


NASA astronaut Douglas Wheelock who is currently aboard the International Space Station shares pictures of the Earth he snaps with the world through Twitter.
Known to his nearly 68,000 Twitter followers as Astro Wheels, Wheelock has been posting impressive photos of the Earth and some of his thoughts ever since he moved into the space station in June, five months after it got Internet access.
Greek islands on a clear night during our flight over Europe. Athens shine brightly along the Mediterranean Sea.

'Mystery Island' ...located in the Indian Ocean close to Madagascar. Interesting features on the island and the unusual shape should be enough to help you discover this beautiful place.

Northern lights in the distance in one of the finest nights over Europe. The photo clearly shows the Strait of Dover. Paris is dazzling with the city lights. A little fog over the western part of England, particularly over London.

The moon is breathtaking.

Of all the places of our beautiful planet few can rival the beauty and richness of colors in the Bahamas. In this photo, our ship is seen against the backdrop of the Bahamas.

At a speed of 28,163 kilometers per hour (8 kilometers per second), we rotate the Earth's orbit, making one revolution every 90 minutes, and watch sunsets and sunrises every 45 minutes. So half of our journey is in darkness. For the work we use lights on our helmets.

Every time I look out the window and see our beautiful planet, my soul sings! I see blue skies, white clouds and bright blessed day.

Another spectacular sunset. We see 16 such sunsets each day, and each of them is really valuable.

Beautiful atoll in the Pacific Ocean, photographed using 400mm lens. Approximately 1930 km south of Honolulu.

Perfect reflection of sunlight in the eastern Mediterranean.

Above the center of the Atlantic Ocean, before another stunning sunset. Downstairs in the setting sun visible spiral Hurricane Earl.

A little farther east, we saw a sacred monolith Uluru, better known as Ayers Rock. I have never had the opportunity to visit Australia, but someday I hope that I will stand by this miracle of nature.


Morning over the Andes in South America. I do not know for sure the title of this peak, but was simply amazed by her magic, stretching to the sun and wind tops.


Over the Sahara desert, approaching the ancient lands and thousand-year history. River Nile flows through Egypt by the Pyramids of Giza in Cairo. Further, the Red Sea, Sinai Peninsula, Dead Sea, Jordan River, as well as the island of Cyprus in the Mediterranean Sea and Greece on the horizon.

Night view of the River Nile, stretching like a snake through Egypt to the Mediterranean, and Cairo, located in the Delta. Far away in this picture, one can see the Mediterranean Sea.

Our unmanned 'Progress 39P' approaches the ISS for refuelling. It is full of food, fuel, spare parts and all necessities for our station. Inside was a real gift - fresh fruit and vegetables. What a miracle after three months of food from a tube!

I wanted to share with you this view from the Dome. We said goodbye to the members of our group Sasha, Misha and Tracy this weekend, and they returned safely back to Earth. In this photo, Tracy quietly dreams of returning home.

Module Union 23C Olympus docked with the ISS . When our work ends here, we go back home to Earth. We fly over the snow-capped peaks of the Caucasus. The rising sun is reflected from the Caspian Sea.

The flash of color, movement and life on the canvas of our amazing world. This is part of the Great Barrier Reef off the east coast of Australia, photographed through the lens of 1200 mm.

All the beauty of Italy, a clear summer night. You can see many beautiful islands that adorn the coast - Capri, Sicily and Malta. Naples and Mount Vesuvius are allocated along the coast.

At the southern end of South America lies the pearl of Patagonia. The amazing beauty of rugged mountains, massive glaciers, fjords and seas combined in perfect harmony.

"Dome" on the side of nadir station gives a panoramic view of our beautiful planet. Fedor made the picture from the window of the Russian docking compartment. In this photo I'm sitting in the dome, preparing the camera for our evening flight over Hurricane Earl.

Florida and southeastern U.S. in the evening. A clear autumn evening, the moonlight over the water and sky, dotted with millions of stars.

Clear starry night over the eastern Mediterranean. The ancient land with a thousand years of history stretching from Athens to Cairo. Historical land of fabulous and alluring island ... Athens - Crete - Rhodes - Izmir - Ankara - Cyprus - Damascus - Beirut - Haifa - Amman - Tel Aviv - Jerusalem - Cairo - all of them turned into tiny lights in this cool November night.

In this time of year you can enjoy the beauty of the polar mesospheric clouds. With our high-angle illumination, we were able to capture a thin layer of noctilucent clouds at sunset.

Astronaut Douglas Wheelock