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FY13 Aviation Continuation Pay for Pilots

Old 05-23-2013, 04:54 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by crewdawg View Post
... he said the bonus would have to be $100k/yr for 5 years...
Interesting.
I figured it would take about $40k per year minimum (after taxes) before there would be any substantial change in retention rates.

I see it mentioned that fighter pilot morale is at a rock bottom low. What is going on specific to fighter-land that is causing this?
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Old 05-23-2013, 05:21 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by HuggyU2 View Post
Interesting.
I figured it would take about $40k per year minimum (after taxes) before there would be any substantial change in retention rates.

I see it mentioned that fighter pilot morale is at a rock bottom low. What is going on specific to fighter-land that is causing this?
I'm not a fighter guy but my guess is that they don't have enough fighter cockpits anymore; yet in turn have too many crappy non-flying desk job billets and/or UAV slots that mother Blue and mother Green have determined can only be manned by 11Fs. Thence, and to the irony of having been bestowed the privilege of the fighter stink, their AFSC locks them into an AF poorly-thought out scheme of gutting the operational assignments in order to fill a bunch of bad deal jobs. So, not only do they deal with community-targeted gutting, but they don't even get to return since the Rx courses are skosh in an environment of fiscal austerity.

Basically they're facing the fate of the commoner KC-135 pilot, but for the completely opposite reason (being considered uniquely qualified for the billet , as opposed to historically disposable and thus perfect for the billet). The irony indeed.

But like I said I don't fly fighters (or tankers), I just stayed at a holiday inn last night and this is the internet...
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Old 05-23-2013, 06:10 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by thrust View Post
It's not just the 11Fs. It's all 11Xs.

Big Blue's solution: stop loss and 15 year UPT ADSCs.

Also, for those who use the AD check-of-the-month club membership as their sole justification for staying... best of luck. Stay because you love the job, you love to serve, you love the people, you love the BS, etc... but don't stay only because of the retirement, because it WILL be changing. It'll start small- increased TRICARE copays, delayed pension payouts for AD retirees until age 60, etc. But it will change. Hopefully we'll all be "grandfathered" in...
Yup. My experience is with 11Fs and it's a huge shortage...something like 1,000. They were bringing everybody, and I mean everybody, back to the airplane. My final assignment was at the FTU and I was amazed at some of the guys coming back to the TX course. I can't tell you how many times I said, "We brought THAT guy back? I thought we kicked him out of the community 4 years ago?"

I think AD retirement will be changing. I also think that those who are already retired won't see a change.
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Old 05-23-2013, 06:18 PM
  #24  
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Well, when I signed the bonus, it was $25K/yr all the way through 20 yrs. I took the max up front. The last four or five years, I was effectively the highest paid guy in the entire squadron...

Money's not everything, I loved the mission. It wasn't until the last couple years that the environment really changed...culture too to a lesser degree. I don't know that I'd make the same decision today with 11yrs in front of me....

My rambling point - it's circumstantial. We weren't yet fighting The War Against Terror, there was a ton of good flying, plenty of good deals still, and it was fun. There wasn't anything on the outside that interested me. I can tell you for a fact, my calculus would've been radically different if I had to make that call anytime in the last five years or so...I'm extremely happy I didn't take it all the way to 25 yrs (which was an option for me)
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:41 AM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by Hilltopper89 View Post
Yup. My experience is with 11Fs and it's a huge shortage...something like 1,000. They were bringing everybody, and I mean everybody, back to the airplane. My final assignment was at the FTU and I was amazed at some of the guys coming back to the TX course. I can't tell you how many times I said, "We brought THAT guy back? I thought we kicked him out of the community 4 years ago?"

I think AD retirement will be changing. I also think that those who are already retired won't see a change.
The old mantra of the LtCols are what was left standing is already back again. The bonus will stay inact so senior leaders can shrug their shoulders and say "what, we offered a bonus?" when congress wants to know why we don't have enough frontline, current, and experienced pilots to fight a one front war with Honduras.

Good thing we aren't talking about an O-11 shortage....then we could really be in trouble.
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:36 AM
  #26  
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http://www.gao.gov/assets/130/128827.pdf

The more things change the more they remain the same. We are only just now seeing the first wave of Flag or General Officers who were eligible for the bonus. Even now many of the decision makers never had a chance to take the bonus and disdained it and those who took it.

Just a couple years ago i listened as a very senior aviator flag bragged that "we have retention figured out". Really? So that whole post 911 economy and airline swoon had nothing to do it?

Would argue it has everything to do with it. Managing pilot inventory is a long term evolution and those in charge are not doing it long term, and probably are insulated from hearing the issues that are causing them challenges and are about to get much worse.

The good news is if you want to be an Airline pilot, the services adjusting downwards the bonus, sending pilots home early "selectively", and cutting every flight hour possible while demanding more and more non cockpit activities from JPME to Community service is a great sign that hiring is about to get going very strongly. In the last two hiring "waves", the military actually did the same things they are doing now.

Take the bonus if it is in your interest and you were gonna stay anyway. Mil retirement is no joke. But how much desk time and risk of retiring non current can you absorb?

Good luck.
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:43 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by HuggyU2 View Post
Interesting.
I figured it would take about $40k per year minimum (after taxes) before there would be any substantial change in retention rates.
I think he was basically saying there is no way I'm staying, figuring they would never pay him a 500k bonus.

Originally Posted by HuggyU2 View Post
I see it mentioned that fighter pilot morale is at a rock bottom low. What is going on specific to fighter-land that is causing this?
I can't speak personally as I'm a Guard guy, I can just relay what I'm hearing from some of my AD friends and the guys rushing our squadron. They just seem to be run into the ground. Here are some of the ones we hear the most.

-6 month AEFs (not too bad, but is when coupled with the rest of the bs)
-365s (non-flying) to your choice of the garden spots we go to.
-Constant TDYs when they are home
-SOS correspondence before going in-residence (why do it twice?)
-Spending what time you have home getting a bs masters
-Yes man leadership
-12-14 hour days, 5-6 days a week, doing "busy" work
-Seeing crappy pilots that can plan the heck out of a Christmas party getting the good deals/promotion
-1 mistake AF
-Alcohol is bad, no Friday shirts, no morale patches, no heritage...
-Now you can add, sexual assault retardedness to the list

Ran into a friend from training, in the AOR recently. He had been at his home station base for ~2 years. I asked him how things were down there. His response...I don't know, I'm never there.
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Old 05-24-2013, 11:00 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by Dragon7 View Post
http://www.gao.gov/assets/130/128827.pdf

The more things change the more they remain the same. We are only just now seeing the first wave of Flag or General Officers who were eligible for the bonus. Even now many of the decision makers never had a chance to take the bonus and disdained it and those who took it.

Just a couple years ago i listened as a very senior aviator flag bragged that "we have retention figured out". Really? So that whole post 911 economy and airline swoon had nothing to do it?

Would argue it has everything to do with it. Managing pilot inventory is a long term evolution and those in charge are not doing it long term, and probably are insulated from hearing the issues that are causing them challenges and are about to get much worse.

The good news is if you want to be an Airline pilot, the services adjusting downwards the bonus, sending pilots home early "selectively", and cutting every flight hour possible while demanding more and more non cockpit activities from JPME to Community service is a great sign that hiring is about to get going very strongly. In the last two hiring "waves", the military actually did the same things they are doing now.

Take the bonus if it is in your interest and you were gonna stay anyway. Mil retirement is no joke. But how much desk time and risk of retiring non current can you absorb?

Good luck.
Spot on. I think the biggest morale killer are the last things you mentioned. When a freshly minted Weapons School grad does one short 6 month stint as a SQ Weapons Office rand then gets dragged to be the Wing Exec and goes non-BMC that speaks to the problem. Some goys, like me, just wanted to fly. I was blessed enough to do it for 15 straight years following 2 non-rated assignments as an Lt. Now throw in the fact that a 20 year fighter career won't get you 2500 hours any more since the only SQs getting hours are those deployed or spinning-up to deploy. I see massive exodus of those folks who really just want to fly and then possibly go to the airlines afterwards. If this austerity continues guys won't be nearly as experienced after a career and thus less competitive as well.
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Old 05-24-2013, 11:26 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by crewdawg View Post
I think he was basically saying there is no way I'm staying, figuring they would never pay him a 500k bonus.



I can't speak personally as I'm a Guard guy, I can just relay what I'm hearing from some of my AD friends and the guys rushing our squadron. They just seem to be run into the ground. Here are some of the ones we hear the most.

-6 month AEFs (not too bad, but is when coupled with the rest of the bs)
-365s (non-flying) to your choice of the garden spots we go to.
-Constant TDYs when they are home
-SOS correspondence before going in-residence (why do it twice?)
-Spending what time you have home getting a bs masters
-Yes man leadership
-12-14 hour days, 5-6 days a week, doing "busy" work
-Seeing crappy pilots that can plan the heck out of a Christmas party getting the good deals/promotion
-1 mistake AF
-Alcohol is bad, no Friday shirts, no morale patches, no heritage...
-Now you can add, sexual assault retardedness to the list

Ran into a friend from training, in the AOR recently. He had been at his home station base for ~2 years. I asked him how things were down there. His response...I don't know, I'm never there.
You forgot reflective belts and a screwed up PT program.
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Old 05-24-2013, 02:01 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by PittsDriver View Post
You forgot reflective belts and a screwed up PT program.
All of the above, SPOT ON!
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