I think you are right, Disgusted.
Experience is appreciated, but so is enthusiasm, positivity and a customer focussed approach. If it can be delivered at a lower cost, and so permit new routes, new aircraft, new cabins and improvements to the onboard soft product, then from a customer perspective I don’t see any downsides.
First, from a safety perspective, ALL crew are certified to the same standards. This is legal requirement, and not negotiable. There is no question of any safety implications from crew not being able to perform effectively in an emergency situation. This is a Red Herring, and does not hold water.
Second, Mixed Fleet is not as inexperienced as you make out. All recruits in this initial tranche are experienced crew, mostly from other UK based airlines. This was done to ensure training could be speedily completed, and to ensure a core of people who can provide guidance and leadership to other less experienced future recruits.
Mixed Fleet applicants have either chosen to come across, preferring the customer and route profile of BA, or have been made redundant by other airlines during the global current economic boom which has been so carefully evidenced in the posts of others. An example is the 600 people bmi made redundant earlier this year:
I understand further tranches will not be required to have experience, but they will be working alongside their more experienced colleagues in, erm, exactly the way legacy fleet introduced new recruits into the airline.
Every company has newer recruits who need to learn the ropes, some will be more competent than others, but rigorous performance management, and supportive training regimens will ensure this is evened out.
Unless the BASSA position is that only old, experienced crew should serve BA passengers? I would not be surprised if that is indeed the mindset.
As Disgusted rightly states, there is no reason for a correlation between the age of cabin crew, experience or salary and the level of service delivered. None whatsoever.
In my view, the correct response to Mixed Fleet is to ensure that legacy cabin crew prove to BA Management, through customer feedback and other evidence, that it is capable of exceeding the service delivered by Mixed Fleet, and justifies the salary and experience which is alleged to so differentiate it from those newer to the role.
Bye bye to whoever it was who said they wouldn’t be reading BT any longer.