In some airlines, newly hired flight attendants who have successfully completed their flight attendant training are assigned a monthly schedule. In other airlines, new flight attendants are placed in casual positions or are put on reserve assignment duty. This means they are on call 24 hours a day by telephone (although they may have 10 or more days free of duty each month).
As flight attendants gain seniority, they are awarded a monthly schedule where all flying is known in advance. Monthly schedules, vacations and choice of home base are determined on the basis of seniority.
Flight attendants may advance to supervisory positions such as purser (in flight supervisor), passenger or flight service director, or training instructor. Competition for advancement to senior positions is keen.
Flight attendants are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 6522: Pursers and Flight Attendants. In Alberta, 95% of people employed in this classification work in the Transportation and Warehousing (PDF) industry.
The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:
- trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the Transportation and Warehousing industry)
- location in Alberta
- employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
- occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
- size of the occupation.
Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.