News story

Government launches new campaign to boost aviation recruitment

Generation Aviation is a new recruitment campaign aimed at encouraging people to consider a career in the UK's aviation sector.

aeroplane viewed from the ground
  • new recruitment and engagement campaign will encourage the next generation into aviation
  • forms part of government strategy to create a more sustainable, open and diverse aviation sector
  • campaign will help deliver training, outreach schemes and opportunities for anybody looking for a career in the industry

People across the country will be encouraged to kick-start a rewarding and exciting career in the aviation sector as the government launches a brand new recruitment campaign today (31 October 2022).

Generation Aviation is part of the government’s 22-point plan to support aviation as it recovers from the pandemic and forms part of the wider aviation strategy ‘Flightpath to the future’. The recruitment campaign builds on £1.5 million announced by the government over the summer to boost recruitment into the sector.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the air transport and aerospace sectors contributed at least £22 billion to gross domestic product (GDP) each year and provided at least 230,000 jobs across all regions of the country directly. However, there are several challenges ahead, from decarbonisation to changing travelling patterns following the pandemic.

The new campaign will help to boost recruitment into the sector by:

  • raising awareness of aviation careers, such as through our £700,000 Reach for the Sky programme which will fund outreach programmes and events to educate young people from all backgrounds on the opportunities on offer in aviation
  • signposting training, careers and opportunities to people looking to enter or move up in the industry, including through the relaunched Aviation Skills Recruitment Platform (ASRP), which have already received £600,000 in funding
  • championing the sector to celebrate its successes and promote it to a wider audience, including through the incumbent and new aviation ambassadors inspiring representatives of the aviation sector and its breadth of opportunities
  • driving research and data to articulate the issues facing the sector and inform decision-making on its future resilience

For the sector to successfully adapt, it requires new skills and a robust pool of talent across a wide range of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields and other critical roles. This campaign will see government and industry work together to build a workforce that is open, diverse and accessible.

The campaign is being launched today at London’s Heathrow Employment & Skills Academy, where in an opening address Transport Minister Baroness Vere said:

The aim of Generation Aviation is quite simply, to build an aviation workforce fit for the future – a future that can only be realised by a new generation of aviation workers, from all corners of the country, representing the rich diversity of modern Britain.

This will be followed by several events over the coming days aimed at students, those already in other careers looking to make a future in aviation, and those already in the industry keen to progress or seek new skills and roles. Tuesday will see webinars and panels on how people can enter the industry through education pathways. Wednesday will look at early career opportunities. Thursday will look in more depth at life in the sector, and Friday will focus on accessibility, diversity and inclusion.

Heathrow’s Learning and Inclusion Director Jason Knight said:

A successful aviation sector connects countries and continents. It acts as the global gateway for leisure, commerce, and families and is a central pillar for local communities and the national economy.

Generation Aviation is a timely celebration of everything this sector provides and the opportunities we can create through career opportunities here. To support this, Heathrow has set two major targets, creating 10,000 jobs and apprenticeships and 15,000 ‘experience of work days’ by 2030.

Marcus O’Shea from Aerobility said:

We change lives by providing anyone, with any disability with access to the magic and wonder of flight. We do this because taking the controls of an aircraft drives a focus on capability and encourages our flyers to ask the question ‘If I can fly an aeroplane, what else can I do?’

It is our mission to ensure as many people as possible can access the benefits and opportunities provided by the aviation industry, which is why we are delighted to announce the Equal Skies Charter as part of the week’s activities. Equal Skies will work with the aviation industry to increase accessibility and deliver a more diverse workforce.

The week will conclude with an interview with Mike Miller-Smith MBE, the CEO of Aerobility, a charity helping people with disabilities get into flying, led by DfT Director of Aviation, Ben Smith. The government is working with Aerobility to help ensure the industry is as accessible as possible, providing over £200,000 in funding for the Virtual Aerobility programme.

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Published 31 October 2022