How AlphaTech helped Neil Logan to the FO seat.

We are very proud of all the pilots we help to a career with the airlines. Neil Logan was one of our first pilots that we helped with Simulator Assessment preparation. A lot of people go straight into aviation, increasingly a lot of pilots have different careers beforehand. In the case of Neil Logan, a career in aviation was always the final destination….via construction. Now a First Officer with Thomas Cook Airlines, Neil explains his pathway to his first job and how AlphaTech help along the way.

How did you start flying?

I would consider myself a late starter, and only learnt to fly at the Ulster Flying Club in my mid-twenties. After my first few lessons, I loved everything about flying and started to look at a career in aviation shortly after gaining my PPL.

What challenges did you have with your training?

Initially I found the weather to be the biggest headache, especially being situated in the British Isles. As I progressed I found that work and family commitments were more of an issue.

Did you choose a modular or integrated course?

Modular worked for me. I carried out my basic PPL and hour building at the Ulster Flying Club. This worked well up to a point as I could fit the early stages of training in around my other commitments. For the more advanced ratings I went to FTE Jerez on a residential course for several months. I do see the benefits of both routes to a career, but I found the modular route better for me. It also is better value for money if you can be patient.

Where did you do your MCC & JOC courses?

The MCC & JOC course was the final part of my time at FTE Jerez. Up to that point in our training we hadn’t carried out any Jet training. I found it really rewarding and exciting as I knew I was creeping closer to my first proper airline job.

How did you hear about the job opportunity with Thomas Cook?

I came from a Flying Club background, so had lots of people to advise when airlines were recruiting. So it started as a bit of a rumour, and then they published the jobs properly. As a candidate, I felt that I needed more preparation for the interview and assessment

What does a normal interview consist of?

Most airlines have an interview and an assessment in their simulator. I had applied for jobs before, so the interview itself gave me no sleepless nights! The Simulator assessment was slightly different. Thomas Cook fly the Airbus A320 range of aircraft, so I felt it was important to get a few hours in the type that I was being assessed on. A lot of people don’t do this, I decided it was madness not to do it.

Where did you do your Sim Assessment preparation?

AlphaTech have a fixed base A320 simulator with sensible hourly rates. Their simulator is the best fixed base example of an A320 that I have seen. Their instructors have lots of knowledge about the interview process and simulator assessment. For example, each airline will have preferred flight profiles for their assessments. AlphaTech know the most likely scenarios that will be thrown at you as a candidate. I found this particular background knowledge invaluable when it came to the assessment itself

How did your interview and assessment go?

I thought my interview went really badly, although I was pretty nervous. The simulator assessment went well, I put that all down to my time with AlphaTech. From there, I got offered the job and progressed onto line training with the airline. The rest is history as they say!