15 More Stations To Be Outsourced

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by Captain Oveur, Mar 13, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. Captain Oveur
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    Captain Oveur Gold Member

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    Oh wait...I'm not pimping any blog.

    I've always loathed the term "race to the bottom," to describe any airline. But it's hard not to at least understand why people say it when this free fall from grace encompasses United.
     
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  2. ssullivan
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    ssullivan Gold Member

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    UA seems to be well on its way to being nothing but a holding company for a brand that outsources everything.
     
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  3. Golfingboy
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    Golfingboy Gold Member

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    PIT staff are pretty anxious and relatively upset about what is transpiring over there. Outside of SFO/LAX, they have lost about 7-8 mainline flights. Some days now we only see 3 mainline flights.

    Elite upgrade list out of PIT is ridiculous now. Today the ORD flight on CR7 had 30, my flight to LAX had 25, IAH flight had 36, and the nearby IAD flight had almost 20.

    As a 1K I wound up #6 and only 3 people cleared.
     
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  4. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    That's my line.
     
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  5. blackjack-21

    blackjack-21 Gold Member

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    When UA decides to outsouce their flight deck crews to "RentACrew, Inc." it may be time to start looking for another carrier.
     
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  6. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I've noticed that as well, pretty much everywhere though. Some routes have an upgrade list 30-40 people deep, which makes you wonder if you have a chance at all, regardless of status. :)

    Depending on the routes, the lists are truly outrageous... there is an EWR-ORD flight tomorrow with 63 people on the list, and 5 flights over 45.
     
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  7. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    There are those who would argue the UAX operation is precisely that.
     
  8. Bay Pisco Shark
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    Bay Pisco Shark Gold Member

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    The planes, the gates, and the staff are going to start wearing plaques, just like hotels, stating "This Agent Is Operated By B.S - F.U* Under A Licensing Agreement by Friendly ---------> Airlines"
    (*Bargain Service - Formerly United)
     
  9. Seacarl
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    Seacarl Gold Member

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    The long upgrade lists will be reduced as UA drives away the elites.
     
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  10. avflyer
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    avflyer Silver Member

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    Wait....sorry for the STUPID question. Does this mean there will be no more UA employees at these locations? Is this limited to certain functions / jobs or is it all encompassing?
     
  11. Captain Oveur
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    Captain Oveur Gold Member

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    The staff who checks people in and the gate folks will get their paycheck from another company, and will likely wear UA uniforms.

    I'm guessing that some might stay for the job, but their paychecks will be dramatically lower than what they were getting while getting checks from UA.

    If you fly UA a lot and to smaller markets, chances are you have already interacted with an outsourced employee in the past.
     
  12. avflyer
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    avflyer Silver Member

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    Thanks captain!

    Just experienced what I expect is going to be the new normal at these stations. Mrs. Flyer and myself (both 1K) attempted to execute a same day flight change at YXE. The VERY young girl was clueless. I don't want to go in to all of the incorrect statements she made, just let me say that we were unable to change our flights.

    The least UA could do is actually train these people. I feel badly for them and the pax who have to deal with this bulls.......
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2014
  13. Wandering Aramean
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    Training is definitely a problem. And it extends across both contract and in-house staff. A good agent will be good and a bad agent will be bad, outsourced or not. Some might even argue that it is easier to fix the problem employees if they are outsourced as the Union can't get in the way.
     
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  14. Pizzaman
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    I agree. And yet, not to make blanket statements, but it seems the vast majority of contract employees I've run into have significantly less knowledge/power to fix an issue that a union employee. I'm guessing that's The airlines just not paying a high enough wage and enforcing training. IME, this isn't unique to UA.
     
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  15. Seacarl
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    Seacarl Gold Member

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    Contract employees, depending on the station and company, may work part-time or work for multiple airlines. They may even be a primary employee of another airline that work a few hours a week on UA flights. As a result they sometimes will not have the familiarity and experience with the computer systems and policies of UA, and if they only occasionally work UA counters, they aren't ever going to get familiar, although at stations where UA has 8 or 10 daily flights, you would expect a core of agents to become familiar. At foreign stations you can sometimes add language barriers and cultural factors to the mix.

    Outsourcing is increasingly a reality, and is practiced by a lot of airlines. Many international carriers outsource at stations where they only have 1 or 2 daily flights, and airlines like AS have outsourced most of their cities except their hubs.

    In general it means less good service for elites, although on occasion it can mean waiver of rules or failure to collect instruments. Be prepared to use the phone if you cannot get what you need from the agent.
     
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  16. Max M

    Max M Gold Member

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    My "like" was not because of the outsourcing, but because of this comment:

    and this one:

     
  17. ssullivan
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    ssullivan Gold Member

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    I've dealt with a lot of contractors, for years now. Of course this is nothing new; prior to the merger both UA and CO were outsourcing everything at many stations. They're often fine, as long as everything goes as planned. More often than not, they're not quite as well trained or equipped to handle rebookings when there are delays or cancellations. The small number of staff working at many of these airports also complicates things, as there aren't enough of them to handle the passenger load when rebookings are needed. And, I've occasionally run into contractors who were less familiar with UA's rules than they should be; this has particularly been an issue at some of the airports in Texas and Louisiana that were outsourced to American Eagle (or whatever it is they call themselves these days). It's a tough situation for customers and employees alike; I know there are contractors who are working multiple airlines every day, dealing with different sets of rules and policies, and different computer systems. And, it's not like these are particularly well-paying jobs, which negatively impacts ability to hire some of the most desirable candidates.

    I get why UA, and other airlines, do this, but often there is a decline in the quality and consistency of service delivery. And, the vast majority of passengers don't understand that the employees they deal with at these airports work for SkyWest, or ExpressJet, or American Eagle, or someone else… all they know is they bought a ticket from United and the ticket counter, kiosk, gate, and airplane all say United or United Express. These contractors are the face of United to thousands of passengers every day, so it is in United's interests to make sure the service delivery is at the same standard as it would be elsewhere in the system. Unfortunately that's not always the case, especially when flights don't operate as scheduled.
     
  18. avflyer
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