Before an airline firmly offers you a position, pre-employment checks will be made on you.
How much involvement you’ll have in organising these checks will depend on the airline which you’ve applied to – some will do all of the organisation for you, and simply tell you when and where to turn up, while others will ask that you make the appointments and request the appropriate paperwork yourself.
In this blog, our industry partner, Cabin Crew Wings, share their thoughts on the pre-employment checks and what you can expect.
Why Are These Checks in Place?
In any job, where you will be in a position of responsibility and dealing with members of the public, it’s normal for employers to carry out background checks. The sole purpose is to make sure you are who you say you are, and that the information you’ve given throughout the process is accurate.
From a safety perspective, checks like these are especially important – not only are you working in an environment where safety consciousness and following procedure is critical, but you will also have access to areas of the airport that are off-limits to the public.
Checking Your References
You’ll have been asked to provide at least two references (usually these are from your most recent previous employment) who the airline will contact to verify the details you provided on your CV and application.
You’ll probably be used to this procedure, as checking references is common for any kind of employment application.
Again, the method of contact will differ from airline to airline, with some recruitment teams contacting referees directly by phone, and others asking them to complete a straightforward form or written statement based on their experience of working with you.
Criminal Record Checks
Safety is paramount for airlines, so the airline will carry out a criminal record check to ascertain whether you have any unspent convictions, or have had any convictions in the past which could affect your suitability for the position.
Having a prior conviction can have an affect on the likelihood of you getting the job, especially if it’s related to your behaviour or ethics.
It’s important that you’re honest from the start of your application. If you’re found to be hiding something, your application could be instantly dismissed, even at this stage.
Be aware that you may have to pay the fee for this check yourself, depending on which airline you’ve applied to. The airline will let you know their preferred company for carrying out the checks if this is the case.
Not all airlines carry out these checks, and candidates often find it confusing when they do. It can cause concern, simply because people don’t understand why they’re in place.
Don’t worry – the airline isn’t delving into your credit rating, or how much money you have in your bank. The checks are there as a further identity check, and to ascertain whether you’ve ever had financial difficulties which have resulted in legal action, such as bankruptcy or CCJs/court action.
The medical checks are there to confirm that you’re fit to fly. You may have already filled out a medical questionnaire before you get to this stage.
The checks are straightforward, and you can expect them to include:
- Height and weight
- Blood and urine tests
- Hearing check
- Blood pressure
- Immunisations e.g. tetanus, tuberculosis, yellow fever etc.
- ECG to test your heart rate and its general condition
- Eyesight Tests
- Dental Checks
If you have any pre-existing conditions, or are taking any ongoing medication, you must declare it.
You will also have to answer questions based on your lifestyle, such as how much you exercise, whether you smoke or drink alcohol, and your diet. The medical examiner might also ask you about your family history of illnesses or health problems.
Again, be aware that some airlines may ask you to pay for and arrange the medical yourself.
Following the successful completion of these checks, you’ll be given a date for your pre-employment training – this is the stage when things begin to feel very real for candidates.