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European low-cost carrier, Volotea achieves its 2023 pilot hiring goals



Volotea, one of the fastest growing independent airlines in Europe, were seeking A320 Captains for 2023 seasonal contracts. As with nearly all European airlines, Volotea found themselves grappling for talent amid a fiercely competitive hiring environment. They acted fast to find a solution, and in August 2022 they engaged the services of AeroProfessional, a specialist aviation recruitment company, to support them in achieving their hiring goals.


Volotea are an award-winning Barcelona-based airline founded in 2011. They operate a fleet of 41 Airbus aircraft across their 19 European bases and in 2023 celebrated the milestone of carrying 50 million passengers since their very first flight. Every year Volotea increases the number of aircraft in their fleet and the number of routes they serve, so crew recruitment is, of course, critical to this growth.

AeroProfessional is an international consultancy specialising in developing and delivering high-impact people strategies and resourcing solutions in aviation. With an enviable reputation for successfully delivering maximum conversions for volume recruitment campaigns, AeroProfessional have firmly established themselves as the recruitment partner of choice for operators across the globe.

In August 2022, Volotea partnered with AeroProfessional to support their search for A320 Captains for 2023 seasonal contracts. As with many European airlines, Volotea were experiencing a fiercely competitive market, but they responded to this challenge very quickly by enlisting the help of an industry specialist.


The partnership with AeroProfessional enabled Volotea to rapidly access top talent at scale, with their internal database of over 30,000 aviation professionals and wider candidate network of close to 100,000 European pilots.

AeroProfessional managed the entire end-to-end recruitment campaign including a fully branded marketing strategy with unlimited campaign drives, and the use of their bespoke client portal to handle applications.

The recruitment experts at AeroProfessional interviewed and screened hundreds of candidates, and, following an extensive verification and vetting process, which included qualifying candidates against the terms and conditions on offer, submitted best-fit candidates to Volotea ready for the next stage in the process.


AeroProfessional successfully completed Phase 1 of the recruitment campaign, and concluded by providing Volotea with a comprehensive Recruitment Market Report. Detailed within the report were market benchmarking and suggestions for adaptations that could be made to ensure the target pilot number was achieved.

Testament to what a forward-thinking airline Volotea is, they implemented the suggestions almost immediately and as a result received a 50% uplift in applications from suitable candidates.

Volotea achieved their recruitment targets by late spring 2023, and now have a hold pool of candidates ready in advance of the 2024 campaign.

It was a pleasure to support Volotea with their 2023 hiring programme and to achieve such positive results for them. Volotea recognised that they were hiring amongst strong competition and placed themselves in the best possible position for success by working with people who truly understood the unique challenges faced by the industry. Adopting this strategy early saw them achieve their hiring numbers within the desired timeframe, which, in 2023 was extremely rare. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Volotea and replicating the success of this hiring programme in the near future.

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Dean O’Sullivan

Operations Manager at AeroProfessional

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At Volotea we realised very quickly that we would need to adapt our hiring strategy in response to the competitive market conditions. Finding the right partner, who had the specialist experience to support us in developing and delivering that strategy, was crucial. In AeroProfessional we found that partner, and we were delighted with the results that were achieved for our operation. We look forward to a long-standing  and successful partnership with them for years to come.

Merlan van der Panne

Head of Pilot Recruitment at Volotea

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