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Cry of the Wind

Selling Yourself In Todays Market?

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Been a long time since I posted here though I have kept some tabs on this place. I think the last time I seriously posted here was back in flight school about 10 years ago. Well now I have a several years of ground crew experience and a couple thousand hours of flying time and I'm back with a new set of questions.

 

I wondering how other people approach their pilot resumes and speaking with potential ops managers and chief pilots. I've been trying to be realistic with my experience and what I have done but it seems that this has left me with no work and no prospects. I'm not suggesting I'm looking to lie or pad my books or anything like that but a more positive way to spin myself that would make an ops manager take notice. All the jobs I have had were from word of mouth and recommendations from contacts I have made over the years and that seems to be running dry.

 

Some backstory to base my question on. I am a little over 2000 hours total time rotor with about 1850 PIC, I have just under 300 hours turbine mostly PIC, 200 night hours and IFR. Most of my experience is in ENG and tours with some field work in the mountains as well doing geological exploration. Also for what its worth I am Canadian with no other countries license.

 

With all that said an done I been finding it very hard to even get someone to talk to me these days about job postings or any opportunities. I took a few months off out of the industry after my IFR for some personal and family related things and in that time it seems the industry has slowed down to the point unless I am a 407 driver with drill move experience there is no need to apply.

 

Currently I even have a contract with a decent sized company and PPC however my CP has told me to actively look elsewhere for jobs as he has nothing for someone with my experience level at this time and doesn't see anything coming up soon (I've been told to pack for and then be taken off 3 jobs since the beginning of May).

 

So what would you do with my resume and is really all that doom and gloom in Canada? I've heard about working overseas but am at a loss as to where to actually find companies that are hiring who don't already want AS350 experience or that cursed precision long time that I have never been able to get.

 

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This is a shame mate. You break the hour limitations and still have issues. I would love to give you some pointers but unfortunately that 350 time and long line experience it's what seems to keep me working. If you can find a place that will help you hone your vertical reference skill you will be in far better shape so I would start there... Best of luck!

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Well a couple people have sent me some tips on people who might be looking. Here is hoping I have just been having bad luck so far. Made it through 2008 with a job at least related to aviation and I am back there now in the mean time if nothing else.

 

Are there any ops manager or chief pilot types (current or former) who have some advice for what to bring to table in conversion with them?

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You need to get yourself an instructors rating, and you will never be unemployed again, in the helicopter industry.

PM me if you are interested in looking into an instructors rating at a very reputable operation.

For the right person I have an opportunity as we speak.

 

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having said that, rotor brake, does anyone in alberta do training in a 300 or 47?? I'm plain too big a guy for robinson iron... but I would love to get about 10hrs... lost my medical a few years ago so this is just for me to enjoy hands on again... been a long time...

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Hi Twin star, I believe Chinook are using 47s and not a lot of people are flying 300s these days. Finding people that fit in the R22 is getting to be a bit of a challenge. Life would be so good if all training was done on the R44, awesome trainer.

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Key in this tough market is having the right toolkit that employers are looking for. You have the hours but not the right experience for what many employers are looking for but it's not hopeless. Your resume should focus on the job you are applying for. If you're looking for a VFR job flying a 206 then highlight the skills and traits that make you a good candidate for that position and leave the IFR almost as if it's irrelevant. Conversely, if you're applying for an FO IFR position then focus on those skills and traits.

 

So you really have two different resumes and two different approaches to finding a job. You have a bit of turbine experience. Assuming it's a 206, focus on finding employers that would would be a good fit for that. HTSC and GSH come to mind. I also saw ads from other companies looking for 206 drivers. You also have a current IFR (and I assume an unrestricted ATPL). Did you apply to Ornge and Stars? I saw they were looking last month.

 

Final bit of advice, when you send your intro email keep it short and sweet. Something like "2000 hour pilot, currently employed looking to make a change. Low maintenance pilot, easy on equipment, great with customers, looking for a 206 position." I'm assuming that's all true because that's the most important traits you need to be successful. And obviously, that's just key points and would be part of complete sentences, but you get the idea. Keep us posted as to your success. Cheers.

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Good advice 5 per. I don't have much to add to that. It's a tough market out there right now. What I will say is follow up emails with a phone call. It surprises me how many experienced and inexperienced guys think an email is enough. That might work when the industry is booming but we are a long way from that. Face to face visits are almost always worthwhile too.

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Yeah, personal visit, or at least a phone call - you can't travel everywhere. Much to my boss's disgust I would always give a few minutes to people banging on our doors looking for work. Maybe the box of timbits helped? :) Anyhow, a smile on your face and the willingness to help push the machine back in the hangar after a quick spin to check your flying were also good - you'd be surprised how many people didn't at least offer. The advice above about tailoring your resume to the company is also good - you should at least know what work they do.

 

One thing strikes me as interesting - there may be something in the being pulled off jobs before you go thing - presumably you had the right experience in the first place, so why do that?

 

 

Good luck!

 

 

Phil

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