Fresh Workforce Needed for the Booming Drone Industry

You can guess what Skyports does, by its suggestive name – this is one of the largest vertiports developers, with contracts in literally all parts of the world. But one of its latest initiatives has more to do with people than with aircraft. It’s a large-scale hiring program, aiming to bring more people into the world of drone operations.
Skyports also plans to build the first vertiport in Europe 6 photos
Photo: Skyports
Skyports is active both in vertiport building and drone servicesSkyports is active both in vertiport building and drone servicesSkyports is active both in vertiport building and drone servicesSkyports is active both in vertiport building and drone servicesSkyports is active both in vertiport building and drone services
If commercial drone deliveries are so popular, why not implement the same concept for delivering school meals to remote or hard-to-reach locations? In the summer of 2022, Skyports teamed up with local authorities in Scotland, to test drone delivery for island schools. For the initial tests, a Swoop Aero eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) was used to safely carry meals from the Oban Airport to the Lochnell Primary School. In the future, all school meal deliveries in the area could be carried out by drones.

This is just one of the many examples where drones are proving to be a successful, green, cost-effective alternative to conventional transportation of goods. And this is just the beginning. But, while everyone is talking about the aircraft themselves, and their commercial operators, there’s almost no talk about the people who are needed to take this phenomenon to the next level.

Granted, everyone in the industry is dreaming of a future where all eVTOL and cargo drone operations would be unmanned. But even then, operations will still need to be closely monitored by ground-based control stations. In the meantime, drone pilots (who are also a new addition to the industry) also require support. Especially with drone services expanding rapidly, in different parts of the world.

Alex Brown, director of Skyports Drone Services, makes a good point when he states that workforce development is essential for the growth of any new industry, although it often stays in the background. As this particular company continues to grow and reach new markets (from Columbia to Korea and Kenya) it plans to also develop dedicated operational support for drone services (not limited to deliveries, but also including monitoring and survey).

That is why it has recently launched a large-scale Hub Operator Program. Those who will be hired through this program will basically support the drone pilots from the ground. They’ll perform the essential checklists for safe operations, help with situational awareness during flights, and ensure safe drone landings and departures. Of course, they’ll do all of that after a period of extensive specialized training.

One of the key features of these new positions is mobility, because the future support experts will need to travel frequently from one flight hub to another. It probably sounds exciting for those who would like to be involved in this young, exciting industry, instead of just watching it develop from the sidelines.

At the same time, Skyports continues to work on developing air taxi vertiports in major urban centers across the globe. Once those will be closer to becoming reality, an even higher wave of workforce recruitment is to be expected.
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About the author: Otilia Drăgan
Otilia Drăgan profile photo

Otilia believes that if it’s eco, green, or groundbreaking, people should know about it (especially if it's got wheels or wings). Working in online media for over five years, she's gained a deeper perspective on how people everywhere can inspire each other.
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