An announcement by Michael O’Leary, Ryanair chief, warns its staff of job cuts in the coming weeks, owning to surplus job opportunities in the airline.
By means of a video message to the workers, O’Leary mentioned the company had 900 too many pilots and cabin crew and hence proclaimed the curb of job opportunities by end of August. An exact number on the losses was however not announced. In his message, he also blamed the planned cuts to the flights in the next summer, with regards to the grounding of the Ryanair’s Boeing 737 Max fleet.
Moreover, he also touched upon the issue of declining profits, the Brexit uncertainty and the growing oil prices.
“It’s been a challenging summer, we’re facing into a very difficult winter,” Michael O’Leary alleged in the video.
“I’m sorry to advise you that this means we need to cut our aircraft numbers and our staffing, not just for summer 2020 but also in winter 2019. This will result in some base cuts, some base closures, and I’m very sorry to say, some job losses this winter for pilots and cabin crew, at the end of our summer schedule in September and October, and also some immediately after Christmas,” he added.
Worldwide the 737 Max has been grounded, owning to concerns of its software crash, which has caused two deadly crashes. This was alleged as one of the important factors for the cuts, which delayed the delivery of 28 planes and forced the airline to cancel flights and close bases as a result.
Expressing concern over the Brexit, O’Leary worried the likelihood of no-deal Brexit could have ‘a damaging effect’, particularly to the UK bases, in addition to some of the Irish bases.
However, he mentioned that Ryanair had an excess of 500 pilots, in addition to a surplus of 400 flight attendants. The airline hence required 600 lesser cabin crew by summer 2020.
The message is seen as a consequence to the airline’s 21% fall on profits for the past three months. The average price of the airline ticket had fallen to 6%, while the company was facing the problem over higher fuel prices, in addition to a fare war.
A final decision on the number of cuts would take place by end of August, while the airline was taking care to minimize the job losses and talks with unions were in progress.
“Fórsa is watching the situation closely, and has told the airline’s management that it expects to be consulted on any measures that could impact on the jobs, incomes or working conditions of union members,” reported a spokesperson for Fórsa, the union representation of Ryanair cabin crew in Ireland. The statement also added that the latest announcement was “obviously of concern” to staff.