Air India staff strength goes down

State-owned airline had frozen hiring of regular employees in 2012 and has since hired pilots and cabin crew on contract

GN Bureau | November 15, 2016


#Loss Making PSUs   #Air India Maharaja   #PSU   #Air India  

(Illustration: Ashish Asthana)

There are early signs of a turnaround at Air India. It has increased its revenue per regular employee by over 12% to Rs 1.09 crore in the year. This was achieved by reducing the number of regular employees to 19,401, down 8% compared with FY15, reported Financial Express.

Air India had received a bailout package of Rs 30,000 crore by the government in 2012 and it had frozen hiring of regular employees in 2012 and has since hired pilots and cabin crew on contract. This improved the airline-to-employee ratio to 1:120 (excluding subsidiaries) compared with 1:139 in the earlier fiscal.

READ: The afterlife of the Maharaja

During FY16, the carrier cut its losses by nearly 35%.

There are areas where it is still behind its private sector peers. For instance, the aircraft utilisation rate of Air India continues to be at 9.5 hours in a day against a standard 12.5-13 hours for most private airlines.

“It would be very difficult for us to substantially improve on most counts any further but a better aircraft utilisation is even harder as it’s a legacy problem that is peculiar to government-owned companies,” the daily quoted a senior airline official as saying.

“As more senior officials retire, we would have to start hiring regular employees in a staggered manner soon. This could adversely impact expenses unless we improve in other areas,” the official added.
 

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