Could Disruption in UK Air Travel Happen Again in Summer 2023?

UK carrier Flybe. Photo Credit: Karam Sodhi/AviationSource

LONDON – Data from SAP shows that a third of the aviation & rail workforce in the UK plans to leave the industry within the next 12 months. Is this a repeat of Summer 2022?

Analysts are beginning to come to the conclusion that the same disruption in UK air travel in the Summer of 2022 could happen again this year.

55% of the workforce also believe that staff shortages will impact Summer travel plans, which is not showing a good sign for the upcoming scheduled season.

Irreparable Damage on the Way?

UK carrier British Airways. Photo Credit: Harrison Rowe/AviationSource

Within the statistics outlined by SAP, around 24% of the workforce believes that the industry faces irreparable damage if the sectors don’t intervene.

Because of this, long-term customer loss could be seen as well in the air and rail sectors.

Senior leaders need to know exactly how to address these losses, with the workforce surveyed voting on the following three items:

  • Ensuring an optimized supply chain to ensure constant availability of resources and equipment (34%)
  • A greater understanding of why employees leave and how they can retain them (33%).
  • Better processes to speed up onboarding processes and checks for new hires, particularly for recruiting international talent (32%).

Kunze: Adaptation to Industry Changes Needed…

UK carrier easyJet. Photo Credit: Thomas Saunders/AviationSource

Expanding on this was Dominique Kunze, the head of Telco, Media & Service industries at SAP:

“Travel providers have seen some significant challenges over the past few years, and many have, as a result, amended or fundamentally changed their business and operating models.”

“The pandemic, a strong focus on sustainability, and changes in customer behavior underpinned by digital technologies have been accelerating factors in this transformation of the travel sector.”

“There is now a tremendous opportunity to reshape the future, especially for those rail and airline leaders who are willing to take definitive actions and utilize technology to make a better informed and more predictable decision”.

UK carrier Jet2. Photo Credit: Kyle Hayes/AviationSource

“When we look at the workforce perspective, it’s encouraging to see that many are clear on why they’ve faced staffing struggles, what they can do to ensure the future health and wellbeing of their staff, and ultimately emerge on top.”

“But they do not need to sacrifice ESG efforts in order to do so.”

“There is a raft of cost-effective, flexible, and carbon-friendly technology out there to help them accelerate recruitment and relieve workforce planning pressures.”

“This allows travel providers to focus on what they do best – helping people get to where they need to be in the most environmentally friendly and cost-efficient way possible.” 

Could We Have A Repeat of Summer 2022 on Our Hands?

UK carrier TUI. Photo Credit: Tom Postlethwaite/AviationSource

With this study in mind, the aviation industry, in particular, needs to take this onboard, especially with the huge disruption already observed on the railways.

There could be a chance of the same disruption happening, as the past incompetencies of not recruiting enough staff in 2021/22 create a potential chain reaction to this all.

But for now, we will have to wait and see what happens in the upcoming schedule or whether the sector can get its act together beforehand.

By James Field - Editor in Chief 4 Min Read
4 Min Read
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