Why do FAA facilities offer tours?

SavannahATC

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I came across a few forum posts where a user that worked at a given facility/airport offered tours to prospective academy students. From the perspective of the union rep, ATM or supervisor that ultimately has to do the tour, how does it benefit the individual and more importantly the facility itself? My grasp of hiring/ERR practices are minimal at best but from my understanding, correct me if I am wrong, connections and networking do not improve your chances of eventually relocating to that facility.



The reason that I am asking this question is that I am planning on scheduling a tour to an airport in my home city and was wondering if networking would improve my chances at all of eventually being selected to work at that facility.
 

JC2H

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connections and networking do not improve your chances of eventually relocating to that facility.

The reason that I am asking this question is that I am planning on scheduling a tour to an airport in my home city and was wondering if networking would improve my chances at all of eventually being selected to work at that facility.
You can’t hit a homerun if you never swing.
 

Electricfence

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71
Initial hiring, it’s unlikely to happen. If it’s a low level they may be on your list but the networking won’t do anything to help that. Later on once you certify, absolutey it could help given the right set of circumstances based on the current transfer policies.
 

PushingTin

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The facrep and Air Traffic manager collaborate on a ranking list. So if 50 people have in for where you want to be (assuming they are all eligible for release), the higher you are ranked the better. NCEPT is currently being destroyed by its new leader though.

FAA facilities are federal government buildings and as such I assume they are mandated to have a process that allows for the public to tour. Tours are annoying as hell, if you're CIC don't be afraid to kick em out!
 

GulfBravoPapa

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No ATM, fac rep, or supervisor is going to give you a tour. It'll likely be whoever is on break and if you get really unlucky maybe an admin person. If it is a prearranged operation rain check your there are likely designated controllers to do it.

We give facility tours to educate people what we do. To foster good relationships with local pilots, pilots based out of our airport, and neighboring facility controllers. Heck, if someone makes a ton of noise complaints I'd invite them in for a tour to show them that we aren't intentionally flying over there house. For new hires it can help you learn what the difference in facility types is.

Tours are great and allow pilots and other controllers to see what we do on our side of the mic/phone. I wish more pilots would come though and tour.
 

PushingTin

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Heck, if someone makes a ton of noise complaints I'd invite them in for a tour to show them that we aren't intentionally flying over there house.
Most noise complaints I find come from Schizophrenics or those afflicted by other mental health issues. A tour can't fix crazy. Don't move next to an airport!
 

Uscolt45

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NCEPT is often thought to take away the politics of hiring but that is not the case. The ATM get to rank the list of applicants how they choose. They can allow input from NATCA or not. It’s up to the ATM. I have seen some ATMs just give the task to the FacRep to deal with.

The only thing that changes if the ATM gets their selections is staffing levels. If they are low on the priority list them their 1-3 picks may have been selected for other facilities already. Or a facility can only release one person, and someone was already selected by a higher priority facility.

In summation: if they can select and you can release, go tour and meet the FacRep and ATM.
 

GMX

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Imagine putting in for a place that you toured and met some people and it all felt positive. Including yourself, 3 people (that you know of) from your current facility also put in for the same place. If they look at that list hopefully it goes something like, "Hey we at least met that person but not the other two, so let's go with him!", or "That's the guy with 9 years CPC at an up/down but the others only have a year or two of tower, let's get him!"

If you know someone it's proven to work. Maybe not as much in ATC specifically or as much as back in the day but I believe in all industries, proximity is a contributing factor to being hired for something.
 

FightingIrish2012

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273
Facility tours are fine for other controllers or overzealous pilots who love aviation and just have to see the operations, but they are annoying when someone brings in the whole Boy Scout group they teach or something like that and it floods the room with kids.

Imagine putting in for a place that you toured and met some people and it all felt positive. Including yourself, 3 people (that you know of) from your current facility also put in for the same place. If they look at that list hopefully it goes something like, "Hey we at least met that person but not the other two, so let's go with him!", or "That's the guy with 9 years CPC at an up/down but the others only have a year or two of tower, let's get him!"

If you know someone it's proven to work. Maybe not as much in ATC specifically or as much as back in the day but I believe in all industries, proximity is a contributing factor to being hired for something.
Generally true but I have seen people visit facilities and blow it for themselves as they came off so bad.
 

axman

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108
No ATM, fac rep, or supervisor is going to give you a tour.
Here’s another “at my facility” mentality that’s ignorant/wrong.
Both places I’ve worked a sup or ATM has given tours. Obviously it depends on the facility and willingness of a managerial person. Just last week I was walking to let some people in the tower and my ATM was coming out of his office. I asked if he was giving the tour or me. He asked if I wanted to, I said no, and he went and got them and gave the tour.
 

PushingTin

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Here’s another “at my facility” mentality that’s ignorant/wrong.
Both places I’ve worked a sup or ATM has given tours. Obviously it depends on the facility and willingness of a managerial person. Just last week I was walking to let some people in the tower and my ATM was coming out of his office. I asked if he was giving the tour or me. He asked if I wanted to, I said no, and he went and got them and gave the tour.
I have also seen managament give tours often. Careful tho. He's been to "3 major up/downs" lol.


I hate giving tours. I Also hate when people giving tours point to every little landmark on the scope and expect some sort of reaction out of the person who has never looked at a busy video map. This is the I-5, that is downtown, this is some Podunk satellite airport. You know they're like, uhh lemme see some planes plz and stop talking. Its also awkward when the old crusty 1986 hires hit on high school girls. Then again its worse when they tell you about the Spring break photos on the 20 something year old trainees Facebook page they're creeping on.
 

mrobs15

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My favorite is the Southwest Adopt a Pilot tour. /s

They come in and scream about how they can see their friends on the lobby security camera. Couldn't care less about the airport operation going on around them. Granted we aren't LAX so there isn't a ton to see but you'd figure these kids might have some interest in airplanes since they are on a pilot guided tour.
 

bob smith

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132
My favorite is the Southwest Adopt a Pilot tour. /s

They come in and scream about how they can see their friends on the lobby security camera. Couldn't care less about the airport operation going on around them. Granted we aren't LAX so there isn't a ton to see but you'd figure these kids might have some interest in airplanes since they are on a pilot guided tour.
Y’all some cranky mfers. 130$k+ a year and you want me to give a tour? Sure thing!
 

CaptainObvious

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I have also seen managament give tours often. Careful tho. He's been to "3 major up/downs" lol.


I hate giving tours. I Also hate when people giving tours point to every little landmark on the scope and expect some sort of reaction out of the person who has never looked at a busy video map. This is the I-5, that is downtown, this is some Podunk satellite airport. You know they're like, uhh lemme see some planes plz and stop talking. Its also awkward when the old crusty 1986 hires hit on high school girls. Then again its worse when they tell you about the Spring break photos on the 20 something year old trainees Facebook page they're creeping on.
“She”

And you made yourself sound like a sanctimonious assclown. No FACREP/FLM/ ATM has given a tour at any of my facilities either. People can only speak from experience. That may happen at some, but in both her and my experience it hasn’t.
 

PushingTin

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“She”

And you made yourself sound like a sanctimonious assclown.
🚨🚨🚨 grammar police, don't tase me breh!
That next level message board burn is enough! I'm sure "She" appreciates your vicious defense of her uninformed but very strong unequivocal statement.

Lolz, the idea that a manager would never give a tour is a bizarre on its face; and certainly doesn't require an etiquette lesson in how people are the sum of their collective parts whose experiences shape their views; CaptainObvious.

P.s. be careful of your gender pronouns! Or police be comin back


2703
 

spider

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63
There is nothing wrong with tours, regardless if they're pilots or 15 year olds who are just interested.

As I've told pilots on tours before...there's a few assholes in this profession just like there are among pilots but most of us aren't miserable.
 
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