Over 300 employees voluntarily leaving Jat
Hundreds of Jat Airways employees have applied to voluntarily leave the airline in return for a redundancy package. According to the Jat Airways employee union, some 350 people, or 27% of its workforce, are leaving the Serbian national airline, the biggest number of employees ever to apply for voluntary leave from the company. Employees have been offered 300 euros for every year they have spent working for Jat. The deal is beneficial for those who have little time left until retirement.
Redundancy packages have been offered to Jat Airways employees several times over the past thirteen years in an attempt to cut down on its workforce. Earlier this year redundancy packages were also offered, with only a handful of employees applying. However, since Etihad Airways purchased a minority stake in Jat, more have been willing to leave the airline. According to the takeover agreement between Etihad and the Serbian government, the government will cover the cost of the redundancy payout.
In a strongly worded statement, the Jat Airways employee union said, “We are witnessing another group of our colleagues leaving the company. Like many others before them no one has remembered to farewell them, thank them for their contribution, wished them good luck, given them a present on behalf of the company, even just a symbolic key ring from the departing Jat or the oncoming Air Serbia. Corporate culture? No, it is corporate arrogance, shamelessness”. The union goes on to say, “We hope and wish that this new airline which we are being promised is run by new people who know what a company is and who are its employees, what is a profit and what is a loss and why in a successful company there are happy employees. Because one without the other just doesn’t work”. According to Jat’s 2012 financial report, the airline has 1.298 employees.
Meanwhile, you can keep up to date with all the latest developments in the lead up to the launch of Air Serbia on October 26 here.