The world shortage of airline pilots has already led to a worrying reduction in recruitment standards, says Geoffrey White, PARC Aviation's general manager aviation consulting.

"As specialists in the sector, PARC believes that this trend is unhealthy and that all the industry's major players should work together to ensure that recruitment practices measure up to the highest standards," he says.

"Some airlines are not committed to training. In abandoning this discipline, airlines are forced to restrict their hiring options to pilots whose major qualifications are a licence and a log book."

PARC has analysed licence holders with flying hours ranging from 200 to more than 4,000 and this research proves that conventional wisdom - which equates flying hours with competence - is flawed.

Concludes White: "We have found that there is not necessarily a direct correlation between performance and flying hours.

"Part of the problem is selection... part training. It takes seven years to become a doctor but if you want to change careers and become a pilot, you can do it in just 12 months."

Source: Flight Daily News