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Old 01-10-2019, 06:04 PM   #1  
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Default Training issues at SKW

Looking to find out if anyone out there has had issues with the training procedures at SkyWest.

We had 7 hirees (thus far) resign and/or fail the November class. It was very clear that the company didn’t care to put forth any effort to assist those who were having difficulties, and left much to be handled by whichever students were willing to head-up study groups (in our class’ case, there were none). The company loves to pledge assistance, but the “help” they offered us was the advice “You either get it, or you get out.”

To all potential people looking to sign on with SKW, there are some stringent rules that the company adheres to, and will absolutely not deviate from:

“Three strikes - you’re out” policy, even if you are struggling and have asked for help. (in my case, my sim partner resigned, and I was not given a replacement to work with)

SKW considers “failure” to be anything below 80% (even on internal tests and exams), and accumulating 3 failures throughout the training program (even on small company tests) results in a termination on the pilot’s PRIA report.

Struggling during FTD / Sim means that they will intentionally limit the amount of help they will offer. You’re allotted exactly 10 hours of extra instruction, and to exceed this will result in a termination (again, on the PRIA report).

I feel very strongly after going through the SKW groundschool that the training department is run on fear. Anyone going into SKW should be aware of these policies and take a long, hard look at which airline they’re choosing. These are things I wish I would’ve known. SKW prides itself on having a very positive, caring culture for its employees, but their actions do not foster this kind of environment. Instead, they seem to pride themselves on the number of pilots who don’t make it through the program.
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Old 01-10-2019, 06:14 PM   #2  
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That is VERY surprising to hear. Less than a year ago I went through a full initial type on the 175 as a captain, and as usual at SKW it was an excellent experience. I’ll be interested to hear if others are experiencing the same issues as you. If so, that will be really disappointing.

Were you in DEN or SLC?
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Old 01-10-2019, 06:40 PM   #3  
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SLC on the CRJ
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Old 01-10-2019, 07:18 PM   #4  
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I believe (correct me if I am wrong) the FAA deems anything <80% a failure. The FAA approves the SkyWest training, ergo <80% = fail.

I struggled a bit with my SkyWest initial in 2006 on the CRJ coming from flight instruction. But I figured it out enough to get through it with a douche upgrade sim partner (whom I thought was a great guy). Make it happen...if you can't, maybe it is not for you.

I really believe Camielle had the hiring algo down pat in 2006. Now, they do not care who they hire. Make it or don't. It is all on you now. 98% of those failures probably would not have been hired 15 years ago.
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Old 01-10-2019, 07:33 PM   #5  
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The quality gate has been moved from recruiting to training a while ago.

And despite some interesting characters like F15 Jimbo, I found the training to be top notch. I would consider it industry leading.

TFAYD
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Old 01-10-2019, 07:43 PM   #6  
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I went through mid-October, we had three resignations - no terminations. From the get-go we were told to “study together, or fail alone.” We took that advice and followed it. After indoc, we were informed of the three strikes and you’re out policy. However, they give you the opportunity to resign and not be terminated.

I came from flight instructing in a Cessna and am a very introverted person, but I knew that I would need study partners and friends throughout the program - so I sucked it up and studied my butt off with my group and then went back to my own room and studied more. If my study group wasn’t clear on something we asked other groups and then would ask for clarification from one of the instructors. We were told at times that we were over thinking something and to not dig so deep, but never were we told ‘sorry, get out.’ Also, there were countless observations of other people’s sim sessions. That different perspective helped me. I admitted I was struggling and not confident during LOFT and requested another session. The instructor was happy to give me another one. In the additional session I set forth my concerns during the prebrief and the instructor answered any question I had and helped me throughout the session. I will admit, there are some better instructors but none of them were unwilling to help me or those in my class.

No, it was not an easy program, Skywest is rumored to have the hardest training program of 121 operators, but I felt prepared when I got to IOE. Since getting through IOE, I’ve learned more from the everyday line captains than we learned in sim.
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Old 01-10-2019, 07:47 PM   #7  
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Interesting to hear. When I was a new hire they were excellent about offering assistance, but the 10 hours seems to be the limit of the generosity. In my class it was usually one section someone had issues with (eg; Manoeuvres or Procedures) and the 10 hours was more than sufficient to pass if they were going to pass the particular validation at all.

I guess with the number of pilots going through at the moment they can only allot so much time before it throws the schedule out for everyone perhaps?

Sorry to hear you didn't have as positive an experience.
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Old 01-10-2019, 07:56 PM   #8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PapaJaime View Post
I went through mid-October, we had three resignations - no terminations. From the get-go we were told to “study together, or fail alone.” We took that advice and followed it. After indoc, we were informed of the three strikes and you’re out policy. However, they give you the opportunity to resign and not be terminated.

I came from flight instructing in a Cessna and am a very introverted person, but I knew that I would need study partners and friends throughout the program - so I sucked it up and studied my butt off with my group and then went back to my own room and studied more. If my study group wasn’t clear on something we asked other groups and then would ask for clarification from one of the instructors. We were told at times that we were over thinking something and to not dig so deep, but never were we told ‘sorry, get out.’ Also, there were countless observations of other people’s sim sessions. That different perspective helped me. I admitted I was struggling and not confident during LOFT and requested another session. The instructor was happy to give me another one. In the additional session I set forth my concerns during the prebrief and the instructor answered any question I had and helped me throughout the session. I will admit, there are some better instructors but none of them were unwilling to help me or those in my class.

No, it was not an easy program, Skywest is rumored to have the hardest training program of 121 operators, but I felt prepared when I got to IOE. Since getting through IOE, I’ve learned more from the everyday line captains than we learned in sim.
I absolutely hate the commonly told advice that you must study together in groups. Yes, that works and is apparently necessary for some people. But for others (myself included), it’s completely unnecessary and actually counterproductive. I’ve always touched base with my sim partner, and for sure the two of you MUST practice flows and call outs to be successful. But studying together? Not necessary.

Now that I’m at a major, I agree that SkyWest has a fantastic training program (much better than the place I ended up at). It’s challenging in that there’s a lot of stuff covered, but if you put in the effort it’s very reasonable and I have witnessed the training department bend over backwards to help people that are struggling. I’ve also seen people that showed up with an entitled attitude get their butt handed to them.

I will say there are a couple of SLC CRJ instructors that have reputations. I’ve had the two most notorious ones on several occasions for CQ. But even with them, as long as you were humble and put in effort, it was fine.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:03 PM   #9  
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Policy is what 8hrs extra... sometimes they give more. People last year were struggling with loft (so the data said) so they added another session to loft footprint. The program is set up for CFI’s, and CFI’s do great . The struggles seem to be people that have been out of flying for 10+ years then decided to come back to aviation. Thats a tuff transition...
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:04 PM   #10  
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They seemed to go out of there way to get everyone through, but not everyone made it. One guy had washed out a year before and was gettin another chance.

Don’t rush to go from systems to sim, they are two different animals. Take time to learn your procedures.
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