Employers place a strong emphasis on essential skills in the workplace. Essential skills are used in nearly every occupation, and are seen as ¿building blocks¿ because people build on them to learn all other skills.
Each profile contains a list of example tasks that illustrate how each of the 9 essential skill is generally performed by the majority of workers in an occupation. The estimated complexity levels for each task, between 1 (basic) and 5 (advanced), may vary based on the requirements of the workplace.
Airline sales and service agents issue tickets, make reservations, trace missing baggage, arrange for cargo shipments and perform other related customer service duties to assist airline passengers. Airline sales and service agents are employed by airline companies. Load planners, who plan the positioning of cargo on aircraft, are also included in this unit group.
- Resolve scheduling problems for passengers. (1)
- Deal with upset passengers who have missed their flights. The flights must be rebooked and arrangements made for baggage routing. (2)
- Encounter problems when passengers change partially used tickets. They must recalculate the fare and taxes and determine the passengers' options. (2)
- May find that flights have been cancelled. They seek ways to reroute or compensate passengers. (2)
- May find that some packages are too bulky for shipment. They may try to repackage the items or negotiate other alternatives. (2)
- May encounter problems in transporting animals. For example, a passenger's dog may be misrouted to the wrong city. They make arrangements for the dog to clear customs, get walked and be boarded overnight until the next available flight. These incidents are complicated because of the need to arrange the appropriate co-ordination at the unanticipated destination. (3)
- Decide which baggage or freight to bump if there is excessive cargo. (1)
- Decide what to do for passengers whose tickets have been lost or stolen. (2)
- Decide whether to allow passengers to change their return dates on their tickets without fare penalty. (2)
- Decide whether to refuse or accept baggage which exceeds allowable dimensions. (2)
- Decide whether to refuse a ticket to a passenger who is in evident mental or physical distress. (3)
- Decide which cargo items have the highest priority for a given flight and which ones can wait for the next flight. (3)
Critical Thinking information was not collected for this profile.
Job Task Planning and Organizing
Airline sales and service agents prioritize their job tasks and activities based on the needs of customers and in response to the priorities set by their supervisors. They organize their work around flight schedules and must respond to constant interruptions by customers and co-workers. Careful sequencing of tasks is important since there are often many tasks to be carried out in a very short time period before a flight. The extent to which airline sales and service agents are successful in their planning and organizing has a direct impact on the airline being able to keep to its service schedule. (3)
Significant Use of Memory
- Remember codes and fares.
- Remember policies for loading cargo.
- Remember daily promotions and special prices.
- Use maps to locate destinations. (1)
- Find information about airline promotional campaigns from the computer system and from supervisors. (2)
- Look up regulations and procedures in the appropriate manuals. (2)
- Refer to flight schedules, routes and fare structures to locate information needed to serve customers. (2)
Other Essential Skills:
Working with Others
Airline sales and service agents may work independently but often work jointly with partners or helpers. They co-ordinate their work with other agents and baggage handlers. When working at the boarding gate, they may work with ramp agents to get passengers on board the plane. They are part of a team with other airline sales and service agents.
Airline sales and service agents continue to learn on the job and through in-service training. They receive training when computer software changes are made or new systems introduced. They watch training videos and attend seminars to stay current with policy changes and to remain familiar with procedures. Some airline sales and service agents are required each year to undergo refresher training on the handling of dangerous goods.