Business Aviation Insider nameplate

Schedulers: Remote vs. Office – Which Is Best?

With the pandemic getting further and further behind us, business aviation operators are debating the pros and cons of schedulers and dispatchers working remotely or in the office.

Leigh Ann Beckett, assistant director of aviation at XCoal Energy & Resources, sees the value in being able to physically drop in and speak to a colleague at their desk. “But I also know I’m less productive in the office with everybody stopping by,” she said.

“My project list is not going to get done quite as effectively when I'm at the office. Checking off my to-do list happens much more efficiently when I work from home.”

Leigh Ann Beckett Assistant Director of Aviation, XCoal Energy & Resources

“It’s great to bond, talking about ‘Game of Thrones’ or whatever we’re watching at the time,” she acknowledged. “But my project list is not going to get done quite as effectively when I’m at the office. Checking off my to-do list happens much, much more efficiently when I work from home, and I think that is the general feedback from our team.”

Jen Perez, senior corporate aircraft scheduler at Pullman, WA-based Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc. – and a member of the NBAA’s Schedulers and Dispatchers Committee – has been fully remote for the past six years. “When I first started working remote, it was a couple years before our frequent travelers realized I wasn’t even in Pullman anymore,” Perez recalled. “I think that’s a testament to our department, how our schedulers support each other, and it just showed that it didn’t matter; we were still a team when it came to our pilots, to each other and to our passengers.”

Perez has a home office that enables her to mentally differentiate between her home and her workspace. “I feel like a scheduler is at their strongest when they can have a setup that works and supports them,” she said.

On the other hand, a former NBAA Schedulers & Dispatcher’s Committee chair with more than 25 years of industry experience acknowledged a bit of support for the “old school” perspective.

“Remote work sounds great,” said the former chair – who’s currently a scheduler for a Fortune 100 company. “But you lose a lot – mainly collaboration and awareness.”

Everyone we spoke with favored a hybrid or flex model, splitting a scheduler’s time between home and office. “We as an industry expect our schedulers to be available 24/7,” Beckett said. “But then we don’t afford them the opportunity to take a little bit of work-life balance and work from home. So many companies are still resistant to even a flex schedule, and I’m surprised by that.”

The former NBAA committee chair said staffers should be recognized for working non-standard hours and compensated for it, “not necessarily monetarily, but if somebody works at night, they should have that time back for themselves or their family the next day.”

Overall, experts tend to agree the best decision depends on the scheduler.

“The way technology is, if there’s somebody that is the right fit for your department and is able to organize themselves and set boundaries for themselves, even full-time remote is great,” Perez said.

Also consider the required responsibilities. A Fortune 500 aviation operations manager told Business Aviation Insider that “the responsibilities placed on the schedulers and dispatchers define whether or not you should allow remote work. If you have a big enough team and you’re rotating shifts and you want people to be there at the office, that’s great,” the manager said. “You’ve just got to make sure you staff your team appropriately for that.”

Review NBAA resources for schedulers and dispatchers at

March/April 2024

Earn Your Scheduler Certificate on Your Schedule

Take your career to the next level. Earn your Business Aviation Scheduler Certificate on your own time with an online course provided by NBAA.
Read More

March 13, 2024

SDC2024 Attendees Empowered to Engage

The 35th edition of the NBAA Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference (SDC2024) kicked off March 13, 2024, with inspiring speakers urging attendees to engage and empower themselves to soar in their careers.
Read More

Jan/Feb 2024

Managing Passenger Expectations: Communicate and Offer Options

Smart planning, constant communication with principals and offering options for unexpected contingencies can prevent logistical headaches for business aircraft operators.
Read More

August 7, 2023

Podcast: Growing Professionally as a Scheduler & Dispatcher

Working as a scheduler or dispatcher is a significant time commitment. Nevertheless, it's important for those working in the field to allocate time to further their education and career potential by earning accreditations and certifications.
Listen Now