The ugly truth.....
I have been in aviation for over 30 years and contracting for the last 20 years on and off. I can no longer afford to do it. No travel expenses, shit wages, shit/no per diems, no accommodations. When I started in this game contractors got paid well because we were temporary, not covered by EI, severance etc. So we charged accordingly. What I have seen is AMOs pitting you head hunters against each other and driving down their cost to the point that why would they employ full time when it is cheaper to use contract labour. Not to mention working us like slaves, who actually wants to work 50 60 70 hr weeks. I am better off to stay at home and drive a truck. FYI I started out pushing a broom in the local flying club and gradually worked my way up. I have wrenched on everything balloons, gliders, bug mashers, helicopters, turbo props, biz jets and most boeings and airbuses and I have always been the last guy out the door at contract end. If we were a recognised trade I would be a Master Mechanic and paid accordingly. In this industry I get paid the same as someone with the ink still wet on their license. Oh, I am also a 2500 hr cpl. Right now I have one foot out the door and the other is not too far behind.
I've worked night shift. That really sucked. I felt like a total zombie after a year. The longest shift I ever worked was 22 hours. Didn't have to do that very often, but, yes, there were definitely several 12-14 hour days. The reward was my paycheque and that the aircraft made it out on time to make the company money. All of this happened while working for operators. I've had good though too. Working for an AMO where the shift was 8:00 AM till 4:30 PM. Very little OT. Good people (for the most part anyway...) to work with. Worked in a component O/H shop where the shift was 7:00 till 4:00. Sometimes had OT. Got to travel for several courses. Current job, management role, work 7:00 to 4:00. Very little OT. Pay is fair. Lots of vacation, good benefits, good people to work with.crazyaviator wrote:Sleepless nights wondering if the work I did was perfect, Working that overtime shift well past 14 hours + and trying to be 100% in the game, doing the best of my ability and having management and even fellow AMEs continually nitpick as if it was a competition in one-up-man-ship!, Having to beg for raises when the industry standard is much higher than your requests when you are doing better than standard , Being rewarded for getting it done successfully on time and the reward is with your own AME s in the Bar after 10 pm. How many AME s have experienced the above and what are the answers to this foolishness? I have moved on to being self employed and will not entertain the craziness of organized abuse! Please respond with your stories and your solutions !
The solution to ending the madness crazyaviatior spoke of is to let your feet do the talking. There are so many types of places to work for in aviation and they all have different working conditions. if your work is driving you mad, you do have the power to change where you work and you should. No job is worth your sanity! It will take a bit of courage though. Change is hard. Stepping into the unknown is not easy and it involves risk. I promise you though, there are better places that you can work for.