southwest airline hiring process?

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

Millie in South Orange, New Jersey said: Hey everyone!!
I started my process with SW last week and today I had the f2f..right after I was done with my f2f i was fingerprinted and sent for my drug test!! Im sure these are all good indications that I have the job, but my ? is what is the turn around time and what is the method of communication for an offer?

I applied for the Customer Service Position here in Newark NJ (EWR)

I can tell you one thing for sure. It helped a lot that you're applying for the EWR position. It's very unusual that Southwest has to look to external applicants to staff a newly opening city. They are REALLY looking for people to staff EWR. You are correct that you've been accepted for the job if you've been sent for your screening. It may take a while for the results to come back and to get you into a training date. If it takes a long time, it's normal.

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Millie in South Orange, New Jersey

42 months ago

John in Chicago, Illinois said: I can tell you one thing for sure. It helped a lot that you're applying for the EWR position. It's very unusual that Southwest has to look to external applicants to staff a newly opening city. They are REALLY looking for people to staff EWR. You are correct that you've been accepted for the job if you've been sent for your screening. It may take a while for the results to come back and to get you into a training date. If it takes a long time, it's normal.

Thank you John..I can breathe a little easier now!!

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flyin high in Denver, Colorado

42 months ago

I am cleared and just waiting for badge for airport. Has anyone got a Dallas training date?

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KELLY in Fort Worth, Texas

42 months ago

Hi, do you know when SWA will be hiring or posting for applicants for externals? Also, can you submit an application/resume even if the job is not posted? Eagerly awaiting....used to be a FA for SW 20 years ago, and want to go back sooooo bad!!!! Help please!!!

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sunshine3200 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

Im finally in!!!! This has been such a longgggg process (3 months!!) but Im finally apart of the Southwest family!!! I want to give a BIG thank you to those of you who have answered my 101 questions about the hiring process!!! Also a special thanks to John who has answered all of my questions in detail!!!

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SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

Hi John,

First I want to thank you for taking the time to help all of us thru this process of trying to work for SW. Since we are both from Chicago maybe you can help me to understand how frequently jobs are available in the Chicago area? Also for part time positions how many hours a day or how many hours per week to they normally work?

I have to assume you are stranded in your home today with our awesome Chicago weather we are having today

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Mike in Buffalo, New York in Norfolk, Virginia

42 months ago

John (or anyone one who recently applied),

I applied last week (1/26 )for the customer service rep in buffalo. My question is how long after you summit your application does it take southwest to determine if you have been selected to be enteted into the hiring process?

Thanks

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e248 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

sunshine3200 in San Diego, California said: Im finally in!!!! This has been such a longgggg process (3 months!!) but Im finally apart of the Southwest family!!! I want to give a BIG thank you to those of you who have answered my 101 questions about the hiring process!!! Also a special thanks to John who has answered all of my questions in detail!!!

Congrats! I just started what you just finished... I look forward to being official too!

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e248 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

Mike in Buffalo, New York in Norfolk, Virginia said: John (or anyone one who recently applied),

I applied last week (1/26 )for the customer service rep in buffalo. My question is how long after you summit your application does it take southwest to determine if you have been selected to be enteted into the hiring process?

Thanks

I applied 4 times and it took about 2-5 days to receive a rejection notice for the positions I was not selected for. The position I was selected for took about 8 days to hear back about a phone interview. This has been my experience but if you read up, everyone has different experiences and they all vary.

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Mike buff in Buffalo, New York

42 months ago

Thanks for the heads up! Ill just keep my fingers crossed and my ears open awaiting hopefully a positive call.

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois said: Hi John,

First I want to thank you for taking the time to help all of us thru this process of trying to work for SW. Since we are both from Chicago maybe you can help me to understand how frequently jobs are available in the Chicago area? Also for part time positions how many hours a day or how many hours per week to they normally work?

I have to assume you are stranded in your home today with our awesome Chicago weather we are having today

Part time people work a 5 day week just like everyone else except that their day is only 4-6 hours long. That's the interesting thing about PT. On any given bid, the company may elect to give the part timers 4,5, or 6 hour long days. In other words, on one bid you might be working 4 hours a day and on the next bid it may be 6 hour long days. The company has the latitude to fluctuate the PT schedules in that way, and you just never know what the next bid will be. So, some may find it difficult to budget their finances when their work hours can fluctuate by 1/3rd at any given time. The good thing is that you can ALWAYS pick up hours from other people if you feel like you need more. You'll never have a hard time doing that. Also, many full time people find part time shifts more desirable to pick up since they're short, so giving away days is often not hard either. So as long as you don't mind begging, borrowing, and stealing for more work hours every pay period to make your paycheck look like what you want it to be, then it might not be a bad thing for you..

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

sunshine3200 in San Diego, California said: Im finally in!!!! This has been such a longgggg process (3 months!!) but Im finally apart of the Southwest family!!! I want to give a BIG thank you to those of you who have answered my 101 questions about the hiring process!!! Also a special thanks to John who has answered all of my questions in detail!!!

Congrats! have you been given a start date for training?

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

John in Chicago, Illinois said: Part time people work a 5 day week just like everyone else except that their day is only 4-6 hours long. That's the interesting thing about PT. On any given bid, the company may elect to give the part timers 4,5, or 6 hour long days. In other words, on one bid you might be working 4 hours a day and on the next bid it may be 6 hour long days. The company has the latitude to fluctuate the PT schedules in that way, and you just never know what the next bid will be. So, some may find it difficult to budget their finances when their work hours can fluctuate by 1/3rd at any given time. The good thing is that you can ALWAYS pick up hours from other people if you feel like you need more. You'll never have a hard time doing that. Also, many full time people find part time shifts more desirable to pick up since they're short, so giving away days is often not hard either. So as long as you don't mind begging, borrowing, and stealing for more work hours every pay period to make your paycheck look like what you want it to be, then it might not be a bad thing for you..

Also, nearly 100% of the time after only a few weeks of being on the job the company will offer part timers full time positions. It's just sort of become customary to hire people in as PT. So, if you want to be full time I can almost guarantee you that the opportunity will present itself very early on in your employment. And in that case you are GUARANTEED 8 hours every day.

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Mike buff in Buffalo, New York

42 months ago

John,

How long do bids typically last? For csr women must be a size 26 or lowet and men 42 or lower do they hire employess say 44-46 or are they a no go? Also is the size require ment for all postions or just service reps??

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e248 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

Mike buff in Buffalo, New York said: Thanks for the heads up! Ill just keep my fingers crossed and my ears open awaiting hopefully a positive call.

I forgot to mention, I was emailed to set up a phone interview for the next day. If I remember correctly, there are posts in this thread that mention people being called to set one up or just called and interviewed on the spot. It doesn't seem like any 2 people have had the same experience when it comes to the process.

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

Mike buff in Buffalo, New York said: John,

How long do bids typically last? For csr women must be a size 26 or lowet and men 42 or lower do they hire employess say 44-46 or are they a no go? Also is the size require ment for all postions or just service reps??

Bids will last either 1 or 2 months. Contractually the company is obligated to conduct 6 bids per year, so they could all feasibly be 2 months long, but typically there will be more than 6 bids. Sometimes a bid will come out that states it's only 1 month long and it ends up being extended an additional month.

I'm not too knowledgeable on the size requirement stuff. I know they're picky about it for flight attendants, but not too sure about CSAs. There seems to be no size requirement for ramp because we have some pretty big guys working on the ramp, many of whom were hired that way. I doubt they would turn away a good candidate on account of their weight. Or perhaps you have a 46 inch waist but you're 6'4. I think as long as you're clean cut and presentable, they're not going to discriminate against someone carrying a few extra pounds. It may just be that ramp (being a non customer contact position) is not subjected to such physical appearance standards.

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sunshine3200 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

John in Chicago, Illinois said: Congrats! have you been given a start date for training?

If your talking about training in Dallas the answer is no. But I do start training at my station next week.

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

sunshine3200 in San Diego, California said: But I do start training at my station next week.

No I meant training in general. You can expect to be headed to Dallas about 2 weeks after your first day. If it's like it was for me there will be a couple of days of filling out forms and doing various paperwork at some facility off the site of the airport. Then you'll be moved to a class room inside of the actual airport where you do more job related class room stuff. Then you'll be put in the field along side a trainer who you will observe. Then after about a day of that you'll be doing hands on stuff under supervision. This might go on for about a week before you're shipped off to Dallas. Then either 1 or two weeks (might only be 1 now) of Dallas training. The Dallas training is pretty cool. Wait till you see the mothership. Southwest has a very impressive headquarters. You'll be lodged in a nearby hotel and shuttled back and forth every day for class. The nights are your own. Food is provided, but you also get a per diem for each day. I recommend having lunch in the cafeteria in HQ. It's a spread like you've never seen. You'll likely get to meet all of the execs like Gary Kelly, and if you're lucky Herb and Colleen. The whole place is sort of a surreal experience. The walls are decked out in all sorts of Southwest memorabilia, and everything is over the top. Basically what you might expect inside of the HQ of a Fortune 500 company but probably x5. Southwest has a very rich history in it's only 40 year existence and you will receive a thorough education of it. I don't mean it in a derogatory way, but Southwest almost has a cult like flavor to it. People are going to tell you that they love you. And the people walk the halls with an eerie smile. It would only be a slight exaggeration that after you were done sitting in a chair, people would come out and replace the chair with a new one. You'll see what I mean.

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moosicgurly in Maryland

42 months ago

Hi ALL,

Just wanted to say that I got my welcome phone call and email today and I start on Feb.11. I go in for badging on the 10th. Thanks for all of the responses and to those of you still waiting hold on!!! My process started on January 5th when I submitted an email online and ended today with the call. I look forward to orientation!! Can anyone tell me what the classroom experience is like for csa's.

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Mike buff in Buffalo, New York

42 months ago

i I understand that swa is about to start servicing Sc, I hear rarly the look for externals but in the event they do what is there trasfer policy?o you have bid to go back to your jhomelocation or any other location. Are trasfers automatilly given or the has to be avacancy

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Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland

42 months ago

Yay Moosicgurly!! Happy for you and you give me hope that I will hear soon. I was interviewed/fingerprinted/drug tested on Jan 26 so I guess I am a week behind you.

I had a major Dilemma. I worked for UPS last season and was going to be a driver. There were no jobs but then... They called me on Monday and offered me a job - only $9.50 and only in pre-load which is 3-4 hours a day at 3:00 in the morning. I would be seasonal driver at higher pay $21.10 for part of the year.

I had to discuss both opportunites with my family. My husband was leaning toward UPS because it is closer to home. But I wanted SWA so thankfully, he came around! I feel blessed to have two options in such a touch economy. I also feel I made a comittment to SWA when I accepted the offer to move forward.

Hopefully, I will hear soon so I can be in your training group Moosic. Even though you are a CSA perhaps we would attend training together.

Best Wishes to Everyone :)

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flyin high in Denver, Colorado

42 months ago

moosicgurly in Maryland said: Hi ALL,

Just wanted to say that I got my welcome phone call and email today and I start on Feb.11. I go in for badging on the 10th. Thanks for all of the responses and to those of you still waiting hold on!!! My process started on January 5th when I submitted an email online and ended today with the call. I look forward to orientation!! Can anyone tell me what the classroom experience is like for csa's.

Hello does FEB 11 mean Dallas or your station? I am just wondering because I know I am getting that call either tomm or Monday.

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sunshine3200 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

flyin high in Denver, Colorado said: Hello does FEB 11 mean Dallas or your station? I am just wondering because I know I am getting that call either tomm or Monday.

You start training at the airport, then you go to dallas a week or so after that. Looks like were all going to be at the Dallas training together.

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sunshine3200 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

They told me to come in 2 days before I start for an orentation. Is this where I get my ID Badging and uniform? If so how does the uniform thing work? Do I pay for them? How many sets do I get? Thanks

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moosicgurly in Maryland

42 months ago

Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland said: Yay Moosicgurly!! Happy for you and you give me hope that I will hear soon. I was interviewed/fingerprinted/drug tested on Jan 26 so I guess I am a week behind you.

I had a major Dilemma. I worked for UPS last season and was going to be a driver. There were no jobs but then... They called me on Monday and offered me a job - only $9.50 and only in pre-load which is 3-4 hours a day at 3:00 in the morning. I would be seasonal driver at higher pay $21.10 for part of the year.

I had to discuss both opportunites with my family. My husband was leaning toward UPS because it is closer to home. But I wanted SWA so thankfully, he came around! I feel blessed to have two options in such a touch economy. I also feel I made a comittment to SWA when I accepted the offer to move forward.

Hopefully, I will hear soon so I can be in your training group Moosic. Even though you are a CSA perhaps we would attend training together.

Best Wishes to Everyone :)

Thanks soooo much!!! I hope you hear soon too!! It would be awesome to know someone in training. Congrats on your two options but I would try to hold out I think Southwest is going to be an amazing company to work for. :) You will hear soon I am sure. I called a couple times to double check that everything was okay. But it all worked out :)

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moosicgurly in Maryland

42 months ago

sunshine3200 in San Diego, California said: You start training at the airport, then you go to dallas a week or so after that. Looks like were all going to be at the Dallas training together.

Oh thats true!!! I think it would be awesome to meet you all!

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SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

Congrats to moosicgurly I am so happy for you!!!!!

Lindalirious I know when the time comes you will choose the right job for you!!!

Good Luck to both of you!!!

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

That UPS job is not even in the same category as Southwest. I actually used to work at UPS, it's a super high turn over crap job.

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holmes34 in Birmingham, Alabama

42 months ago

HEY JOHN I AM KIND OF NEW TO THE SIGHT..... JUST WONDERING IF YOU WERE REJECTED BY SWA PREVIOUSLY, CAN YOU REAAPLY? WILL THEY INTERVIEW YOU AGAIN FOR THE SAME POSITION? IS THERE A WAIT PERIOD BEFORE THEY WILL INTERVIEW YOU AGAIN? IF YOU HAVE ANY INFO ON THIS TOPIC I WOULD GREATLY APPRECIATE IT. ANY INTERVIEW TIPS WOULD BE APPRECIATED AS WELL, I REALLY WANT TO LAND THIS JOB IF I AM GIVEN ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY.

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sunshine3200 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

holmes34 in Birmingham, Alabama said: HEY JOHN I AM KIND OF NEW TO THE SIGHT..... JUST WONDERING IF YOU WERE REJECTED BY SWA PREVIOUSLY, CAN YOU REAAPLY? WILL THEY INTERVIEW YOU AGAIN FOR THE SAME POSITION? IS THERE A WAIT PERIOD BEFORE THEY WILL INTERVIEW YOU AGAIN? IF YOU HAVE ANY INFO ON THIS TOPIC I WOULD GREATLY APPRECIATE IT. ANY INTERVIEW TIPS WOULD BE APPRECIATED AS WELL, I REALLY WANT TO LAND THIS JOB IF I AM GIVEN ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY.

For the phone interview they ask you questions like do you know the duties required for the position? Why you want to work for the company? What you know about the company? Why you want to work for the company?

For the F2F they really go off of your resume. What I mean by this is they ask you about your previous positions, why you left, what you liked about them, what you didnt like etc.

Just be very happy and show that you are eager to work for the company!

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bm081305 in Batavia, New York

42 months ago

Mike in Buffalo, New York in Norfolk, Virginia said: John (or anyone one who recently applied),

I applied last week (1/26 )for the customer service rep in buffalo. My question is how long after you summit your application does it take southwest to determine if you have been selected to be enteted into the hiring process?

Thanks

Hi everyone I am new to this forum but I've been reading all the comments and eveyone is so helpful! I wanted to say I too applied online for a position as CSA for Buffalo, NY on 1/25 but I haven't heard anything yet, I am hopeful that soon I will hear something, but in the meantime I will paitently wait. I do have a question though....when I check the status of my application it says "closed" does that just mean they have received enough applications/resumes for that position and now are just going through the ones they want to pursue? Thanks for any feedback! Mike we can hopefully share our experiences :)

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sunshine3200 in San Diego, California

42 months ago

bm081305 in Batavia, New York said: Hi everyone I am new to this forum but I've been reading all the comments and eveyone is so helpful! I wanted to say I too applied online for a position as CSA for Buffalo, NY on 1/25 but I haven't heard anything yet, I am hopeful that soon I will hear something, but in the meantime I will paitently wait. I do have a question though....when I check the status of my application it says "closed" does that just mean they have received enough applications/resumes for that position and now are just going through the ones they want to pursue? Thanks for any feedback! Mike we can hopefully share our experiences :)

That's exactly what it means.

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Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland

42 months ago

Just spoke to the First Advantage (Background company) and Southwest.

First Advantage said they should have my paperwork to SWA by Wednesday. Southwest said if they get it there by Wednesday, I should be able to get badged on the 11th and start training next week. Maybe some of us will cross paths in training!

So excited!!!

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SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

Hi All,

So happy for everyone who has recently gotten a job. Wonder how long you'all have been trying to get a job. Have you tried for a couple of weeks or months?

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Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland

42 months ago

Thanks Sallie!

I was at home with my kids for 12 years. In May of 2010 - Sep of 2010, I worked for The Census Bureau.

2 weeks after the Census Operation ended,I started the hiring process with UPS. I was a Delivery Driver. That ended 12/31.

I applied Jan 6 with SWA and have been in the hiring process since then. So if I get hired on 2/11 it will be like 42 days since I have worked.

I know that is a long answer but I am a bit chatty lol. Hope that helps!

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SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

Thanks Lindalirious,
I enjoy the chat!!LOL It helps the time fly as I continue to check the website for jobs. Sometimes I feel like I am glued to the computer, I have been checking in Chicago for 7 weeks daily, and the last 2 weeks, every hour. So I wasn't sure if I am doing something wrong. I have only seen one job in Chicago and applied for it but was rejected, I probably wasn't qualified I was just so excited a Chicago job came up I just hit apply.LOL!!! So I will keep my nose to the computer and patiently wait for ChiTown to come thru for me. Wishing it would be sooner than later, and I would be able to meet up with all of you for training. Keeping my fingers crossed!!!!Enjoy Dallas

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millie in South Orange, New Jersey

42 months ago

Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland said: Just spoke to the First Advantage (Background company) and Southwest.

First Advantage said they should have my paperwork to SWA by Wednesday. Southwest said if they get it there by Wednesday, I should be able to get badged on the 11th and start training next week. Maybe some of us will cross paths in training!

So excited!!!

Hi Linda,
First and foremost congratulations on getting hired!!! How long has it taken for First Advantage to clear you and did you contact them or did they contact you? I too am awaiting for them to clear me and I am anxious!! I want to call them and track their progress (LOL)..uggggh this waiting game is nerve wrecking!!

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millie in South Orange, New Jersey

42 months ago

SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois said: Thanks Lindalirious,
I enjoy the chat!!LOL It helps the time fly as I continue to check the website for jobs. Sometimes I feel like I am glued to the computer, I have been checking in Chicago for 7 weeks daily, and the last 2 weeks, every hour. So I wasn't sure if I am doing something wrong. I have only seen one job in Chicago and applied for it but was rejected, I probably wasn't qualified I was just so excited a Chicago job came up I just hit apply.LOL!!! So I will keep my nose to the computer and patiently wait for ChiTown to come thru for me. Wishing it would be sooner than later, and I would be able to meet up with all of you for training. Keeping my fingers crossed!!!!Enjoy Dallas

SallieMae,
Dont be discouraged!! Ive noticed that SW constantly updates their postings!! u may want to check their RSS newsfeed aswell!!

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moosicgurly in Maryland

42 months ago

Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland said: Just spoke to the First Advantage (Background company) and Southwest.
?
First Advantage said they should have my paperwork to SWA by Wednesday. Southwest said if they get it there by Wednesday, I should be able to get badged on the 11th and start training next week. Maybe some of us will cross paths in training!

So excited!!!

YAY!!!!! Congrats! I am so excited for you. Hopefully we will see each other in training. Can someone tell me what the very first day/week is like? Also, does anyone know how days off/vacation time/comp days work for customer service agents

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bm081305 in Batavia, New York

42 months ago

Thank you sunshine in cali. that's what I though

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Awesomette in Nashville, Tennessee

42 months ago

Yay! I just got an email from Southwest about a ramp agent! I have no idea which one it is for since I applied for 3 different locations. Hopefully she calls me back tomorrow and I will find out! I'm super excited. I know I will have to move for the position and of course I won't start out making much, but Southwest is by far the best airline to work for and I'm honored to even be considered!

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Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland

42 months ago

millie in South Orange, New Jersey said: Hi Linda,
First and foremost congratulations on getting hired!!! How long has it taken for First Advantage to clear you and did you contact them or did they contact you? I too am awaiting for them to clear me and I am anxious!! I want to call them and track their progress (LOL)..uggggh this waiting game is nerve wrecking!!

Thanks Millie. I was F2F interviewed, drug tested, and I submittted my paperwork on 1/26 so that will be 2 weeks to the day this Wednesday the 2/9 assuming I get cleared by then. They contacted me today to just verify that I was unemployed right now.

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moosicgurly in Maryland

42 months ago

Hey John I had a couple questions for you. I was curious as to how often new hires will be given mandatory overtime? Is it bid for like the schedules or is it passed to the lowest man on the totem poles. Also, how much notice are you given. For example, if I am working on Monday and Tues and Weds are my days off would I find out Tues morning I have to work that night? Also how do the "free days" work do you have to use them the month you earn them? Sorry about all the questions I am just getting really excited about starting and I want to be well informed.

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millie in South Orange, New Jersey

42 months ago

Lindalirious in Port Republic, Maryland said: Thanks Millie. I was F2F interviewed, drug tested, and I submittted my paperwork on 1/26 so that will be 2 weeks to the day this Wednesday the 2/9 assuming I get cleared by then. They contacted me today to just verify that I was unemployed right now.

I had my f2f, drug test and finger prints done last week tuesday (2/1)!! I received the contingent letter of employment on Thursday, I am just so anxious!! so hopefully I have just another week to go!!

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

moosicgurly in Maryland said: Hey John I had a couple questions for you. I was curious as to how often new hires will be given mandatory overtime? Is it bid for like the schedules or is it passed to the lowest man on the totem poles. Also, how much notice are you given. For example, if I am working on Monday and Tues and Weds are my days off would I find out Tues morning I have to work that night? Also how do the "free days" work do you have to use them the month you earn them? Sorry about all the questions I am just getting really excited about starting and I want to be well informed.

It's no trouble at all, I enjoy answering your questions.

The amount of mandatory overtime varies a great deal depending on a couple of things. The first thing is the size and staffing level of your specific station. The larger sized stations are more prone to it because staffing with hundreds of positions is more challenging. The other variable is the time of year. Winter time and the holiday season are the most prevalent times for mandatory overtime. You guys may actually luck out because you're going to be starting after the worst of it and actually closer to spring. You may not encounter any mandatory OT at all unless your station is currently having staffing issues (which is possible if they're hiring). If you are given mandatory OT you are usually given very little notice. The way it works is this. First there is voluntary overtime. There will be a book located somewhere at your station for people to be able to sign up for voluntary overtime. The book will contain pages of overtime for days several weeks in advance. The overtime for any given day will close at 12pm the prior day. Only at this time will they know how many people they have to fill the OT positions, and therefore how many people they need to mandatory to fill the rest. As a result you will only be informed of mandatory overtime some time after 12pm the prior day.

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

::continued::

There are also occasions where you will be given mandatory overtime the DAY OF your shift and be asked to stay late. This might happen if they encounter an excessive amount of sick calls that day.

Freedays are essentially vacation days that everyone receives every month, but are only for use inside of that specific month. These are in addition to your standard vacation days and do not count against your balance of standard vacation days. This is why when people ask me how many vacation days I receive per year I tell them 25. Because in addition to my 15 standard days, I also receive these 10 "monthly" vacation days. The way it works is, at some point during the prior month a bid form will be released. On this form you will elect what day you would like to have as your paid freeday the following month. It works like a bid. You basically rank the days you would like to have in order of preference and they will be awarded in order of seniority. There are a set number of spots for each day of the month for the freedays. At MDW it's something like 7 per day. So up to 7 people can have the same freeday off on any given day. If it fills, your next elected day will be awarded.

Your vacation days are also awarded using the same exact process, with only one difference. Participation in the bid is only optional because you may or may not be looking to use any of your vacation days during any given month. But even if you don't bid that doesn't mean you can't use your vacation days that month. You can turn in a "dat request" (dat = day at a time), with as little as 24 hours notice. It will be awarded to you as long as a spot is vacant for the day you are requesting. It's very uncommon to be declined for a dat day, because unlike freedays, not EVERYONE is bidding because these days are your own to keep and use over the course of an entire year.

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SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

John did you start out with 15 vacation days or have you worked a number of years to get so many? Also what would happen to you if you are not able to stay and work a certain shift?

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flying high in Denver, Colorado

42 months ago

Woohoo I start on march 10 with orientation and first day at DIA is March 14. I am just waiting for the email now. Whew relieved..long process but i did it!

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SandFlysBy in Texas

42 months ago

flying high in Denver, Colorado said: Woohoo I start on march 10 with orientation and first day at DIA is March 14. I am just waiting for the email now. Whew relieved..long process but i did it!

CONGRATS! What position did you "land"?

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John in Chicago, Illinois

42 months ago

SallieMae in Chicago, Illinois said: John did you start out with 15 vacation days or have you worked a number of years to get so many? Also what would happen to you if you are not able to stay and work a certain shift?

When you first start, the default number of vacation days is 10 (2 weeks). However it's usually less than that in your first year. Your initial balance of vacation days is determined by how many months of service you have before the following January. Let's assume you begin working in the month of September. From September - January you would have no vacation at all. But the subsequent year (post January) you would have 1 day for every month of service leading up to the end of that year. In this case you would have 4 months, so you would have 4 vacation days for the following year. But every subsequent year you would automatically have 10 days. Our vacation does not operate on an "accrual" concept except for that first year where your days are determined by months served. In your case, seeing as you joined the company in Feb, you would have more than 10 months on service before next Jan so you will get your full 10 beginning NEXT year. The only thing is that you will have to complete this entire year without any vacation days. You will still have freedays every month though so it's not too bad.

After your 5th year of service you will begin getting 15 days of vacation per year. 20 days after 10 years, and 25 days after 18 years. The max is 25 (5 weeks) of vacation per year.

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