Great Brand for customers - Horrible place to work for employees
Over the past couple years Alaska Airlines has shifted in brand strategy and leadership has completely lost touch with employees. It's sad to see that a beloved brand treats its long term and valued employees as replaceable. It's a great brand to love, but a horrible brand to work for now (wasn't always the case).
In marketing, you are expected to have no work/life balance. You are expected to work long hours, to be available at all times of day and you have no actual "time off" you are still expected to work. There are limited staff in marketing compared to other airlines and recently the bulk of marketing was laid off last winter, including ones that had a long tenure and wealth of knowledge at the company. Anyone who reaches a certain age will be asked to leave or early retirement in marketing. You will be replaced with someone who is younger with no experience. This is common practice in marketing and has been going on for years.
The leadership at Alaska is a joke. They are toxic and micro-manage every detail. Whatever their whim or desire is, they will change company directive based on it without any valid data. They have no problem spending hundreds of thousands of dollars with someone they are friends with or using company resources to purchase items for their family's gathering or friends party. They paid almost a million dollars in hiring a women's niche print magazine that then laid off it's staff months later. Wonder where that money went?
If Brad Tilden
Generally good workplace and benefits but stressful
Alaska airlines is a great company as far as benefits go, relatively easy to learn if you pick up things quickly, if you are computer illiterate, this job will be very hard and stressful for you. The company does take very good care of you with health benefits for you and your family, dental, 401k, life, union security, etc. Free unlimited standby for you, your spouse (or designated primary traveler), your children (still living with you), and your parents. When you finish 1040 hours of probation (actively on the phone) you can begin to book international flights on a generously discounted rate for you and your beneficiaries. Many good resources for mental health, and general wellbeing. You do have the ability to learn different help desks after finishing probation, if you don’t enjoy direct customer service as much.
Only downsides are mostly being new and on probation. Very strict schedule, OK flexibility, but still able to trade or pick up shifts or work out something with other agents. Part time is out of the picture unless you’ve been there for years. PTO is not allowed until the next year after your probation ends. Do not get sick or let anyone who is sick around you on probation. Calls are back to back, not much room to breathe in between, and can get stressful being new, due to OT being assigned by seniority during the winter a lot.
Management is decent, leads and supervisors are pretty good as long as you are actively trying, which is fair. They could work a little
Here is what I experienced while working there.
Overtime was a mandatory 2-hour shift when needed, even on your day's off. If you got a call to work on your day off, and refused to work or didn't call back to a voicemail message, you could get written up. And, for example, if you worked until 5pm and they called you at 7pm that same day, you had 1 hour to get back to the office to work another minimum 2 hours.
As a Reservation Agent, they had a very strict 3 strikes and your out policy, which resulted in employees coming in when they were sick - flu, pink eye, strep throat, stomach flu, etc. An example of an attendance strike could be logging in the phone 1 minute past your scheduled start time, or being unavailable too many times during your shift. Even if you have high ratings when your calls are monitored, excellent overall reservation knowledge, ability to diffuse an tense situation, and even getting personal thank you cards sent by customers, those aren't considered as part of your overall job review. It's about attendance.
The culture at the office I worked at was, "what's in it for me" mentality. If you wanted/needed time off you could try and find someone to either take or trade your days. But it won't be done simply because a co-worker is trying to help you out. (Example: I needed 2 days off for a speaking engagement I accepted before being hired. The only person that was willing to trade agreed to take my 2 days but I had to take 4 of hers or she wouldn't do it
Fun work place, stressful at times, difficult learning process, hard to balance life/work, frequent changes in schedule.
I was hired in December as a reservations agent. You go through 3 weeks of paid training learning the basics of your job. You are required to learn and memorize roughly 118 airport codes for the airports Alaska flys to. They test you for this during the first week and email you the airport codes you need to learn roughly 2 weeks before you start class. You must score at least 85% to pass. The email says you are tested for this and are required to pass on the first day of class but we didn't get tested for it until the beginning of the second week and I know some people failed but did not get let go they just had to come back on there own time and pass it before the end of the 3 week class. You are taught things each week and tested on what you've learned. You aren't required to pass the weekly tests only the final test which is given on the last week and you must score 85% or higher. It's a rigorous process but honestly this is the easy part. The hardest part is after the 3 week class you are put out on the phones with people over seeing you walking around helping you with calls for 3 weeks. Reservations agents deal with so much stuff that you will feel totally unprepared and overwhelmed at first. After the 3 weeks of ojt with helpers walking around helping you they put you on your own. There are excellent help desks you will most likely be calling for several months on various phone calls until you get use to it. Every day is different you are expected to help the customers
ProsFree standby flights with Alaska.
ConsStrict attendance policy, changes in schedule every 2 months
Must love your job to survive the toxic environment
A typical day at work can really depend on the companies management and layout of flights and operations. When things are bad, they are really bad and this will trickle down all the way to baggage and obviously to customer support. In the beginning I absolutely loved my career. I gave up a wonderful job to come here and I was happy to do so. The transition of our company to grow into a much larger one has not been smooth and has come at a hefty prices of the happiness and work/life balance of all of our employees. Although I am not pleased with management I don't believe that supervisors are really given any power to help us. They are constantly undermined and ridiculed so I can't really blame them for being a bit helpless in all the madness. The company has really become so incredibly toxic I have found it hard to continue to stay here. In part obviously covid has effected us all in our personal lives and in our professional lives, obviously. However, that being said, it doesn't feel like the right choices are made to improve our daily lives, whether it is hiring people who have absolutely no clue what they are doing (IE MANAGEMENT) or completely ignoring our cries for help. Overall I think it has become a really toxic environment and I do know that many have left the company and changed careers completely or are hanging by a thread. Our schedules have been so insane and exhausting and we are constantly ridiculed for not pulling through but I know full well high up managemen
ProsCo-workers, SOMETIMES a flexible schedule, Union, Flight Benefits
ConsToxic, Poor Top Management, Bad Pay for conditions, BAD schedules with no flexibility
- Working at Alaska Airlines looks good on a resume
- Some opportunity to get tickets to local events for free
- Alaska Airlines has some very smart specialists in high level leadership positions, whom while excellent at their specialty, completely lack the people and management skills to lead teams. As a result, this creates a toxic environment among those teams where members of those groups are not working together but are instead competitive against one another.
- This also creates an extremely cliquey work environment where not all people feel welcome
- As Alaska flies nonstop, so does the work. Very little work life balance.
- Some of the most self-serving leaders I've ever come across.
- Meetings often were met with snarky and unproductive comments from upper level leadership (who again have no idea how to build up teams and employees)
- Very little career development opportunities
- Unhealthy expectation (though unspoken) to post to your personal social media accounts showing team pride and love of Alaska Airlines
- After the layoffs and budgets were cut, expectations around results were not balanced.
- The company values are mainly designed to keep frontline airport employees happy; leaders within the corporate environment do not mirror the values at all in my experience.
- The flight benefits (standby tickets) are not benefits unless you're single; if you have a family, you'll often times be stuck somewhere trying to get back to your
Alaska Airlines is a good airline to work for. The airline industry, in general, is no longer the industry it was with a glory such as it may have been the case in the 60's and 70's decades. The industry today struggles quite a bit and is cutting back more services in certain sectors.
Alaska Airlines recently acquired and just received a single operation license from the government. I am hoping that the acquisition will blow some fresh and creative out of the box entrepreneurship to further build the airline into a leader far ahead of its competitors such as the big three (Delta, United and the worse one, American). I am no longer delighted by Alaska being part of the OneWorld group. I believe Alaska should hold its own and control their domain in total operations away from any dependability on the big three. I worked for one of the big three and I know through the first-hand experience they did not appreciate having Alaska around at one of their major hubs!
In conclusion, if one does not mind living in a city where it rains a lot, Alaska may be a better airline to be employed by. I shall return to Alaska to serve again if a suitable position, good total compensation and reinstating my seniority were to be offered.
Do not expect too much, keep a low profile, be attentive to your duties, attend work on a regular basis, and see what other opportunities may open for you to move ahead. Remember, this is also a corporate America company. Refer to the books in H
ProsBenefits such as 401K, bonuses, profit-sharing, paid vacations, flight benefits, medical/dental/vision plans, uniforms, overtime, other discounted employee benefits, and more.
ConsLow increments in wage progression, inability to see constraint real issues and correctly resolve them, consistent employee shortage on various shifts.
Customer Care Specialist | Kent, WA | Apr 27, 2018
Very stressful place to work; Mandatory Overtime on a frequent basis.
I worked for Alaska Airlines for 14 years. Started as a Reservations agent, then worked as a Customer Service Agent at the airport and finally as a Customer Care Agent. The company is big and continues to grow, but unfortunately, is understaffed, which results in constant mandatory overtime. I always felt treated like a "number" and became extremely unhappy in my last position. Although they want associates to provide great customer service, they want it done under unrealistic expectations, such as within a certain amount of minutes. Everything from clocking in and out for shifts and designated breaks to how much time each incoming call is answered and handled, is monitored and timed. Seniority plays a huge role in what shift you get and shifts are bid for, every 2-3 months. It can take many years to finally end up with a day shift and with any weekends off. It's challenging to plan any personal events far in advance, because of the fact that shifts change so often. The only enjoyable part of my job, was that I was allowed to work from home, provided I paid for my own dedicated landline and high speed internet. Management did not treat me well. I had a very close relationship with one of my aunts and when she was about to pass away, I asked for one day off to fly from Seattle to San Diego to see her. They denied my request and my aunt passed away during my shift. When I advised them, they showed zero sympathy and compassion. I think Alaska Airlines is a solid co
ProsFull benefits package; travel benefits; paid holidays and vacation; discounts.
ConsFrequent mandatory overtime; lack of work-life balance.
Customer Service Representative | Seattle, WA | Oct 12, 2012
"Never a Dull Moment"
The airline travel industry is ever changing, and being a customer service agent is like being the first soldier into battle.
Alaska Airlines is a very good company to work for with great benefits for their employees. The growth of the company has been exponential since the tragedy of 9/11. I was part of a team who helped win 5 consecutive JD Power Awards for Excellence in Customer Satisfaction along with a #1 ranking for on-time arrivals.
I learned quite a bit about what customer service really is, and how people act when they are put in unfamiliar situations. As a customer service agent (CSA) I've seen just about everything at the airport. From a passenger carrying a baby black bear cub on board an airplane, to a plane running in to another plane, to a passenger passing away in a boarding area. There was a lot of stress involved with the job, not only to help angry customers, but also to ensure that flights departed on time.
I personally believe that the separation between management and the CSA work group could have been closer. I feel that because of the disparity, there was always a shadow cast around the front line employees to represent the company to a level that was hard to achieve without upper management support.
I did, however, enjoy my time working with Alaska Airlines, and would possibly consider working with that company again.
Flight delays, long shifts, nervous passengers and crying babies can make for tough work days, but it was always gratifying to sen
Consworking odd hours (early morning, swing, or graveyard), weekends, and holidays
Customer Service Supervisor | SeaTac, WA | Apr 25, 2012
Professional environment, excellent training, definitely not routine daily experience!
This was a terrific job for me due to the daily variety. Even though the same flights are in-bound and out-bound no two days are alike in reality.
My typicial day at work would begin by opening the station, filling in any sick calls with personnel, delivering cash drawers from the locked safe to opening ticket counter agents, and perparing for the first departing flights with our gate agents, and overseeing the baggage area with our trained baggage agents.
If any of three areas became overwhelmed due to a delayed or canceled flight I would assist the agents in that area either by helping with problem solving, announcements, re-booking or ticketing issues, and possible overnight assistance.
The hardest part of the job came after 911. Until TSA was put into practice, as a supervisor, I performed searches of luggage which was difficult with passengers unfamiliar with this preventative action. Eating lunch while initializing the daily deposit for the station was pretty standard and nearly the only time in the day to sit down which I didn't mind, thinking about the exercise I was getting, and being paid for, what a plus.
I learned a lot from my job, such as, prioritizing, organization, diplomacy, and how fast a day can go by!
The most enjoyable part of the job was contact with the public, which could also be the most tiring, if it was due to a delayed or cancelled flight. If the ticket counter needed help with re-ticketing or simply needed assistance with ticketing issues wer
Prosvariety assists in a fast moving day, plenty of people contact
Consonly how the focus of the job changed after 911.
Questions And Answers about Alaska Airlines
How often do you get a raise at Alaska Airlines?
Asked Aug 8, 2021
Answered Mar 8, 2023
Once a year from date of hire
Answered Mar 5, 2023
What tips or advice would you give to someone interviewing at Alaska Airlines?
Asked Aug 21, 2016
Know the company history and ensure your in alignment with its core values and 5 principles governed by the company. Ensure you are willing and able to commute to any of the 6 bases served, from your home city. Start looking for a crash pad now!
Answered Aug 20, 2022
Research pay from their competitors and use that as leverage when setting/asking for a particular salary.
Answered Aug 10, 2022
What is the best part of working at Alaska Airlines?
Asked May 20, 2020
Friendly and supportive management
Answered Apr 28, 2022
Answered Apr 18, 2022
What benefits does Alaska Airlines offer?
Asked Nov 20, 2020
A lifetime of vacation
Answered Mar 25, 2023
I am on call, I get no benefits
Answered Feb 26, 2023
What is a typical day like for you at Alaska Airlines?
Asked May 20, 2020
Answered Nov 28, 2022
Five min to read over updates and open applications. Phone calls can be very pleasant down are challenging but mostly due to persnickety flyers. Two 15 min breaks and 30 min lunch . Supervisors are all helpful if you need to call or verify protocol. If you need a day off you have to get it covered or use sick time if eligible to use. Must be punctual. My experience so far has been pleasant despite others feedback.