Feb. 22, 2021
NBAA’s Compensation Survey has been an important tool for aviation managers for more than 30 years, and its relevance has never been more acute as the business aviation community prepares for the aftermath of the global COVID-19 pandemic, noted industry experts in the recent NBAA News Hour webinar: Does Your 2021 Compensation Plan Reflect COVID-Moment Realities?
During the webinar, panelists provided topline findings from the survey, which reveals that expectations have often been upended for hiring and compensation amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The conclusions from the independently conducted survey can help inform managers’ hiring and compensation plans for 2021.
“In just two years, we have gone from the dilemma of extreme workforce shortages to the realities of the pandemic. And now, we must be ready for another pivot, one that will require detailed information and insight to help us all make the right decisions,” said webinar moderator Jo Damato, CAM, NBAA vice president, educational strategy and workforce development. “NBAA’s Compensation Survey is a proven, user-friendly scientific tool that provides the quantity and quality of data that aviation managers need to attract and retain the best workers.”
Participants in NBAA’s 2021 Compensation Survey benefit from complimentary access when the survey is published in September, while also contributing to a comprehensive resource that educates the entire business aviation community on salary packages, merit increases and employment policies, said industry veteran and compensation expert Dr. Christopher Broyhill, Ph.D., CAM, who also is a member of NBAA’s Business Aviation Management Committee.
“Studies such as NBAA’s Compensation Survey are important because this is how human resources departments build compensation ranges. Scientifically collected data like that provided by the NBAA Compensation Survey help eliminate bias by presenting data in an objective, scientific manner that removes the emotionalism from conversations about compensation,” noted Broyhill. “This survey really helps aviation managers when they meet with human resources to discuss pay structures for their team.”
Participation in the survey, which is open for six weeks starting in March, is secure and confidential, and all the data provided is analyzed and verified by experts before it is released, explained Judy Canavan, Managing Director, Compensation & Benefits at BDO USA LLP, the company that administers the survey for NBAA.
Canavan also advised participants to seek assistance to ensure the accuracy of the data they provide to the NBAA Compensation Survey.
“Surveys are only as good at the data they receive, so participants should look at this as a team effort,” said Canavan. “Aviation managers know their departments inside out, but when it comes to the nuances of compensation packages and 401(k) matching policies, seek input from your human resources team. Providing the best data means you will have access to the most complete information to help you make your best compensation decisions.”
Also, HR’s involvement in the survey could facilitate a more comprehensive understanding of a flight department’s needs, Canavan noted.
NBAA’s Compensation Survey is a useful resource for flight departments of any size, even those comprised of a single pilot. “This survey is an excellent resource for everyone, as it gives you control of the data,” said Canavan. “You can compare your position with job descriptions and responsibilities in the survey safe in the knowledge that these results were achieved through a scientific approach that incorporates multiple factors, including geography. This will allow you to start a conversation with management about compensation with good, clean and accurate data.”
The survey also informs companies on trends within the business aviation industry, said Broyhill. “Organizations that follow the principles of good retention, have a good internal organizational culture and compensate their people fairly will retain them,” he noted.