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View Full Version : Odds SW will hire me non-current

12-24-2018, 02:44 PM
Im an active duty O4 with 3000 military flight hours over 1200 TT PIC and a degree from Purdue in Flight Technology. Just got passed over for O5 and considering getting out. By the time I can get out Iíll be non-current for about 20 months. Any chance SW will hire me without having flown in 20 months? Would a 73 type help compensate? I might be able to get some flight time before I get out BUT it would only be like 40 to 100 hours in the KC-135 is my guess. Also how many rec letters do you think Iíd need from SW pilots? Anything else that I can do that would help get me hired.

Also, just looked at SWs website and it doesnt look like they are hiring pilots at this time. Does that check?


12-24-2018, 03:48 PM
You never know if you donít apply.

Get the KC-135 time.

Not sure when the hiring window opens again, but check threads here to find out.

Internal recs arenít even looked at until you have an interview. Concentrate on getting your pilot credentials application set up. Pay very close attention to detail on the application and use the same email address you use on the Southwest website application.

Apply everywhere. Not just at SWA. U just got a good kick in the nuts and might be just starting this process. Talk to everyone you can find in the industry. Figure out where you want to live. Figure out why exactly you want to work for a specific company. Think very long term. Youíve got around 30 years wherever u end up hopefully.

And Merry Christmas.

12-24-2018, 04:36 PM
Donít bother with the type-rating. Apply to SWA when the window opens but donít overlook the other majors as well. Do nail down a job offer from someone, even if itís just a regional you wouldn't mind flying with for six months, and be interviewing for all those jobs six months ahead of time because you may be swimming in a pool or facing a backup in training classes of near that much.

Get the additional 135 time, particularly if itís PIC. It can only help.

Make sure you get a copy of all your OERs. Yes, I know, they are ridiculously over inflated, but as source material for a resume service they are golden and while they may or may not impress any knowledgeable exmilitary the HR types seem to love them.

12-24-2018, 09:28 PM
The pilot credentials site states ďactively flying for two yearsĒ under currency requirements. What that really means I donít know.

The type will add some points but itís not a requirement.

If you know any SWA friends, have them submit your name (if you have a current pilot credentials page) for the job fair coming up.

12-25-2018, 01:03 PM
Get flying immediately, and don't wait to apply. Even if SWA would hypothetically hire you non-current, it could be months before you get a call. Spend those months flying and when you get to the interview, you won't be non-current after all.

Get any flying gig asap, and then just keep updating your application every couple of weeks. At some point your app will trigger an interview and whether it's sooner or later, you're better off showing up already in a flying job.

Get those 135 hours and apply to your dream jobs plus whatever regionals would work best for you (living in base, etc). A lot of military guys spend just a few months at a regional getting some hours and 121 experience while waiting for an interview at a major or legacy, and it undoubtedly helps them out.

I got hired by spirit with only my ATP course in the previous 5 years, and a year later SWA offered me an interview. That's a fairly extreme example and I don't think spirit is doing that sort of thing right now but almost any regional would be happy to get you onboard while you're waiting. Skywest is very popular with mil pilots who need recency or some more time to be competitive.

Also... The "actively flying for 2 years" is desired, not necessarily required. I didn't really have it and didn't try to disguise that fact. At the time of my SWA interview I had about 14 months flying for Spirit and nothing but my ATP course for the 4 years before that. Although my logbook reviewer raised his eyebrows a bit when I confirmed the zeros in my recency summary for previous flying over the last 5 years, he never actually brought it up in our discussion other than confirming that the timeline and summaries were correct.

12-25-2018, 01:26 PM
One thing about the SWA hiring process that isn't totally obvious...

You want to keep your SWA application current, however SWA will only post the job opening during brief application windows once a quarter or so. During the window they'll build a list of interview candidates, then pull the job listing until the interview list is depleted. SWA projects pilot hiring to continue throughout 2019 at a pretty snappy pace so even though the pilot jobs aren't posted right now, they will eventually open up the application site and you'll want to have your app ready to go when that happens.

As for your personal timing... SWA has a career expo coming up in mid-Feb, which tells me that by the end of Feb they'll have the job posted and open for applications. If you have a friend who works for SWA *AND* you meet the minimum requirements right now, get your application submitted and have your friend recommend you for the career expo before the end of Dec. Any number of hours at that point would look better than zero.

Reasonable options for you could be to get a guard/reserve gig asap and separate as quickly as possible, get hired by skywest or whatever regional, while you actively apply to SWA. Any movement at all towards securing yourself a flying job should look good to any HR panel because they know that your future flying career depends entirely on your intent. If you want to fly and take steps to get a flying job, you're going to be flying somewhere almost without any doubt. So just have proof of that intent (a class date with a regional, a guard job, a regional type rating and a few months as an RJ FO, etc) and it should show you are determined to make it work. That matters.

12-25-2018, 01:55 PM
Thank you to all of those whoíve replied and a future thank you to those who reply in the future... I really appreciate it :)

12-25-2018, 03:15 PM
Good point about the guard/reserve job too. We took several passed over guys into my reserve unit that easily made rank on the reserve side. We care a lot less about the exact distance u can cram a tongue up a commanderís....and lot more about whether you are good at the actual job of defending the country. No need to instantly throw away the great benefits of a mil career just because big blue is run by the few imbeciles willing to throw their families and subordinates under the bus for 25+ years. Not that Iím biased in any way.