If you’ve tried to navigate an airport in recent years, you might have gotten the impression that there just aren’t enough employees to get the work done. And you’d probably be right.
Long lines, delays, and confusion have dominated the industry — but now airports are trying to do something new to recruit (and retain) high-quality workers.
Focusing on family
While there is a range of benefits and perks that some airports are offering in hopes of convincing people to fill their open positions, one of the most attractive appears to be the introduction of childcare facilities.
With so many working parents struggling to find affordable care for their kids, this is a service that many current and prospective airport employees find quite appealing.
“This will be so convenient,” said Pittsburgh International Airport employee Trudi Shertzer. “With the facility right here, we’ll be able pop in and check on him, which will give us peace of mind.”
The airport is one of several that are moving in this direction and plans to open a center with room for more than five dozen kids. The 475 airport authority workers will have priority over filling those openings, and then the roughly 6,000 other employees will be able to apply for remaining slots.
The trend is catching on
Airports aren’t the only workplaces where childcare is becoming an employee benefit, but it’s definitely starting to spread across this industry.
Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, for example, is in the final stage of developing its own childcare facility for employees.
Matthew Heil, the city’s deputy aviation director, noted the current “challenges” associated with “hiring and retaining staff,” suggesting that the investment in childcare will open up the pool of candidates by allowing the airport to “support those people with children in a direct way.”