"On July 4th, the management and social partners of Brussels Airlines took a closer look at the economic and market situation and the possible tracks for Brussels Airlines. It was clear that to create the right conditions for a successful future for the company, a constructive collaboration between management and social partners is crucial.
During the summer months, both parties therefore met in a series of workshops to find common ground on workload issues. These workshops have all taken place in a constructive atmosphere, setting a new standard for collaboration between the Brussels Airlines management and its unions.
Today, 23 August, a day-long status meeting takes place to again look at the market situation and the future developments, to review the work that has been done during the summer and to define the way forward, making sure to continue the constructive collaboration that was started in the workshops. Several workload-reducing and/or quality-improving initiatives have already been implemented, while others are under investigation by both parties and will be concluded in the coming months.
Looking at the market pressure and the future of Brussels Airlines, we see a unique opportunity to move forward. Our Reboot Plus restructuring programme yielded good results and we have reached a very strong and competitive cost position. With this cost position - that we must protect carefully - and the constructive collaboration with our social partners, we have the ability to move to the logical next step: strengthening our market position by growing our fleet and our staff. We are currently investigating different growth scenarios that will be rolled out in more detail in the near future. This growth will offer career opportunities for our existing staff.
Winter will still be unpredictable: we don’t know how Covid will develop and have an impact on the market demand, corporate demand is still unstable and operational bottlenecks at airports and system partners will continue to put pressure on our operational stability. To anticipate this challenging winter season we will expand our operational staff in all departments.
Concretely, the decision has been taken to prolong the contracts of 200 temporary cabin crew members, to hire additional external cabin crew and to reinforce our resource planning in order to make sure resource needs are correctly fulfilled. On the cockpit side, we have published job openings for pilots, while in Ground Operations and Maintenance & Engineering we had already started hiring additional staff.
This should increase the operational stability in the winter season while creating a more fair distribution of workload.
We want to thank our social partners for their commitment and their constructive contribution in making sure our company and our people are given perspective and chances to grow."
The above statement can be quoted in name of Maaike Andries, Spokesperson for Brussels Airlines.