Virgin Atlantic

At Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays we strive to provide an inclusive environment where individuality is celebrated and we can unleash the potential of our brilliant mix of people.

Virgin Atlantic

Company overview:

From humble beginnings with a very small team and one 747 flying just one route, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays now have a global network and employs thousands of wonderful people the world over. As much as we’ve grown, there’s still this feeling of family and home that really makes Virgin a special place to work.

Our people are a passionate lot, united in creating something really special and something different. Whenever you board one of our aircraft, chill out in our Clubhouses or come to work here, you’ll feel part of it. It’s always been like this.

It’s in our DNA and it was ignited within us from the moment we starting the business. We’ve spent over 30 years helping everyone take on the World. We’ve even done our bit to make it better. And above all, we’ve done it with a style that’s uniquely Virgin.

Corporate Social Responsibility

We’re passionate about Corporate Social Responsibility. We live and work in a world we need to care for, and we encourage all our employees to get involved wherever they can.

You can do this on a small scale by donating the pennies from your monthly salary to our nominated charity campaign, or go bigger by volunteering to take part in one of our organised activities from climbing Mount Fuji or Mount Kenya, to cycling across India or running the London Marathon. Through the work with WE Charity there’s no end of activities that you can get involved in.

Benefits

We offer one of the best concessionary packages in the industry and there’s no better place to satisfy your wanderlust than working with Virgin. Whether it’s a trip to the Black Friday Sales in Orlando, a week relaxing on the beach in the Caribbean or Christmas shopping in New York you’ll have it all at your fingertips.

You’ll get the opportunity to use up to 7 return standby flights per year on the Virgin Atlantic network where you will only have to pay the airport tax.  And if that wasn’t enough you’ll also get discounted flights across other airlines for you and your family along with discount on Virgin Holidays packages.

You’ll also have access to the following :

  • Tribe Card – access from day one to deals across the Virgin network
  • Private Medical Insurance
  • Dr@Hand – allows you to access swifter, more convenient appointment times
  • Flexible working – open to having a conversation around this where feasible
  • Contributory Pension scheme
  • Life Assurance
  • Childcare Benefit
  • Airshare
  • Holiday Purchase

 

Employee Networks

Our employee networks celebrate the individuality that each person brings to our company and work hard to ensure that everyone feels part of the Virgin family.

springboard

Scarlet Women’s Network

We run regular networking sessions with inspirational speakers where women can connect with each other from across the business and share their experiences.

International Women’s Day gives us the opportunity to shine the spotlight on the diversity of roles we have available for women across our business and celebrate their achievements. This year we were really proud to see all women crews operating flights from ground staff through to pilots as part of our IWD events.

We have also recently introduced ‘Springboard’ a Women’s Development Programme which offers mentoring and support for women to excel and reach their goals.

LGBT + Network

Being open, welcoming and a strong ally of the LGBT+ community has been part of the Virgin story for more than four decades now. We know it matters a great deal to our people and their families, to our business partners, and of course to our customers. The LGBT+ network holds regular events to connect people.

Flourish programme

At Virgin we’ve always encouraged people to be themselves and to further enhance this we have introduced a Leadership Experience, called Flourish for all our people leaders. This aims to help our leaders create an inclusive and supportive environment in which people can flourish. We also support our leaders to be inclusive and transparent around how they develop and promote people.

 

Women in Aviation and Aerospace Charter

The UK’s aviation and aerospace sectors are making a commitment to work together to build a more balanced and fair industry for women by launching a Charter for Women. The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Department for Transport welcomes the initiative that recognises more needs to be done to greaterenhance the gender balance in the sectors. Organisations that sign up to this Charter are committing to be the very best at driving diversity and inclusion within their sector and providing fair opportunities for women to succeed at the highest levels. The Charter reflects the aspiration to see gender balance at all levels across aviation and aerospace. A balanced workforce is good for business – it is good for customers and consumers, for profitability and workplace culture, and is increasingly attractive for investors.
The Charter:
• commits organisations to supporting the progression of women into senior roles in the aviation and aerospace sectors by focusing on the executive pipeline and the mid-tier level;
• recognises the diversity of the sector and that organisations will have different starting points – each organisation should therefore set its own targets, where appropriate, and implement the right strategy for their organisation; and
• requires organisations to publicly report on progress to deliver against any internal targets to support the transparency and accountability needed to drive change.

My organisation commits to promote gender diversity by:
• having one member of our senior executive team who is responsible and accountable for gender diversity and inclusion;
• setting internal targets, where appropriate, for gender diversity in our senior management;
• publishing progress annually against any targets in reports on our website; and
• having an intention to ensure the pay of the senior executive team is linked
to delivery against any internal targets on gender diversity and inclusion.

 

Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays Family Friendly Policies

At Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays we appreciate how important balancing family and work life is so if you’re thinking about joining us you may be interested in understanding how we support our employees who have family or caring responsibilities. Publishing our family friendly policies means you don’t have to worry about asking for the information when applying for a role or coming to an interview

Maternity Leave

You can take up to 52 weeks maternity leave, regardless of how long you have worked for us or how many hours you work. At Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays we pay Company Maternity Pay (CMP) linked to your length of service as at your expected week of childbirth.

Over 2 years’ service = 12 weeks full pay followed by 27 weeks statutory maternity pay (SMP)
Under 2 years’ service = 6 weeks full pay followed by 33 weeks statutory maternity pay
Up to 10 days paid keeping in touch days (KIT) days can be agreed between you and your manager during your maternity leave. Maternity pay does not have to be repaid if you choose not to return to work after your maternity leave.

Paternity Leave

We offer 2 weeks Paternity leave on full basic pay, (which includes any entitlement to statutory paternity pay).Paternity leave can either be one week or two consecutive weeks leave which must be taken between the date on which your child is born or placed with you and 56 days after that date.
To be eligible for this you need to have been continuously employed by us for at least 26 weeks ending with the week immediately before the 14th week before the expected week of childbirth, or the matching week for adoption. You must also be the biological father of the child or have been matched with a child by an adopting agency; or are the spouse, civil partner or partner of the child’s mother.

Adoption Leave

You can take up to 52 weeks adoption leave, regardless of how long you have worked for us. At Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays we pay Company Adoption Pay linked to your length of service as at the Sunday before you are notified of being matched with the child you are adopting.
Over 2 years’ service = 12 weeks full pay followed by 27 weeks statutory adoption pay (SAP)
Under 2 years’ service = 6 weeks full pay followed by 33 weeks statutory adoption pay

Up to 10 days paid keeping in touch days (KIT) days can be agreed between you and your manager during your maternity leave. If you are adopting as part of a couple, Adoption Leave can only be taken by one of you. The other can take Paternity Leave or Shared Parental Leave. Adoption pay does not have to be repaid if you
choose not to return to work after your Adoption leave

Company Shared Parental Pay

We pay Company Shared Parental Pay (CSPP) linked to your length of service as at your expected week of childbirth or the week you are matched with a child (for adoption):

Over 2 years’ service = 12 weeks full pay followed by 27 weeks statutory shared parental pay (SSPP)
Under 2 years’ service = 6 weeks full pay followed by 33 weeks statutory shared parental payAny CSPP or SSPP paid will be less any weeks of CMP,SMP, Maternity allowance or SAP claimed by you or your partner.To qualify for shared parental leave you need to have worked for Virgin for at least 26 weeks at the end of the 15th week before the week that your child is due, or for adoption, the week of notification of being matched with a child. Your partner also needs to be eligible for shared parental leave in their own right. If you are both eligible, you can share up to 50 weeks of leave.
Shared parental leave has to be taken within 52 weeks of the birth or adoption placement. Up to 20 paid Shared Parental Leave in touch (SPLIT) days can be agreed between you and your manager during your shared parental leave
Company shared parental leave pay doesn’t have to be repaid if you choose not to return to work after your leave.

Parental Leave

To be eligible for Parental Leave you must have worked for Virgin Atlantic or Virgin Holidays for more than a year, be named on the birth or adoption certificate, or have or expect to have parental responsibility, and your child must be under 18.
You can take 18 weeks of unpaid leave for each child and adopted child up to their 18th birthday. You can take up to 4 weeks leave each year for each child in minimum blocks of one week. If your child is disabled, the minimum block criteria does not apply.
Any parental leave that you’ve taken while working for another employer counts towards your 18 week entitlement. Therefore if when you join Virgin you have already taken some of your entitlement, you will only be eligible for the remaining balance

Emergency Leave

We understand there are going to be occasions when you’ll need to take time off work to deal with unexpected events. Our approach to flexible leave is to let all employees take reasonable time off for dependants in cases of immediate emergencies over and above your holiday entitlement.

Unpaid Emergency leave is provided to help you to deal with an immediate problem and put any necessary care arrangements in place, such as making longer-term care arrangements for a dependant who is ill or injured, arranging for someone else to care for a child if your normal childminder is unexpectedly unavailable, or take any action required as a consequence of the death of a dependant.

Flexible Working

At Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays we’re committed to helping you achieve a work life balance wherever possible and recognise the benefits this brings for both you and Virgin. Flexible working is about giving you more options about where and when you work.

You can apply for flexible working as long as you:

• Have worked for us continuously for 26 weeks at the date your request is made;
• Not have made a formal flexible working request during the last 12 months (each 12-month period
runs from the date when the most recent application was made)
• If you make a formal flexible working application, we’ll consider this fully and fairly, based on our
business needs and we’ll always try and agree requests where we can.

Compassionate Leave

At Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays we are committed to supporting you if you suffer a bereavement of a close relative. We provide up to 5 days paid compassionate leave and access to confidential counselling through our Employee Assistance Scheme

Case Study:

Laura Grant has been with Virgin Atlantic for almost 12 years during which time she has seen her career soar.

Starting out as a buyer in the Technology team she has gained experience across a range of career roles within the business over the years before taking up the position of Vice President,  Procurement based in the Finance team a couple of year ago.

From Buyer to Vice President

It’s a very different career path to the one she thought she might take after completing a Zoology degree course however after taking a sabbatical after her studies for 12 months to travel the world she got a temporary job as a Purchasing Assistant before moving into a Buyer role for a local company.

She then joined Virgin Atlantic as a Buyer for the Technology team before moving into Procurement as a Procurement Manager.

‘One of the great things about working at Virgin Atlantic’ says Laura ‘is the opportunity to progress, I’ve never been in the same role for longer than 2.5 years and having worked as Procurement Manager for a couple of years I then moved into a Head of Category role looking after the Technology team’.

During her time as Head of Category she took 12 months maternity leave when she had her first child and then returned to work moving out of the Technology and into a role as Head of Category for Products & Services. She remained in this role for just under 2 years before going off on maternity to have her second child.

Working culture at Virgin Atlantic

‘I never saw myself as a stay at home mum but it would have been so much harder to have left them had Virgin Atlantic not been so supportive.

When I returned from maternity my role expanded and then 2 years ago I had the opportunity to apply for the Vice President (VP) Procurement role within Finance which is where I am now.

It’s been a very healthy and steady progression over the years and I think this demonstrates that despite having children there really is the opportunity here to develop and succeed in senior level roles.

There is a lot of flexibility so as a working parent I really do get the best of both worlds as it has allowed me to have a healthy work-life balance. I’ve also had a lot of support from the company in relation to my development over the years through the coaching and training courses I have attended.

Virgin Atlantic is a hugely friendly, engaging and supporting company with a real family culture feel to it. It has a real air of openness and inclusiveness about it and is a place you want to come in to work at and where people want the best for each other. It really is a place where people can succeed’.

Careers Opportunities at Virgin Atlantic

People are central to Virgin Atlantic’s success and if you’re interested in joining us we have a wide range of roles available from Apprenticeships to Leadership Roles as well as amazing learning and development opportunities.

Click here to find out more about opportunities within the Procurement department at Virgin Atlantic.

To be the first to know about our vacancies, sign up for job alerts

Background

Kirsten joined Virgin Atlantic back in 2006 as a contractor soon after graduating from Loughborough University with a Masters in Aeronautical Engineering.

‘I was excited to get an opportunity to see what life was like working as an Engineer for an airline. Arriving into Virgin Atlantic, I was really pleased to be working on the oversight of airworthiness and maintenance for operational commercial aircraft, which I soon found to be far more interesting to me than design and industrialisation of small sub components, which would probably have been my job if working for an aircraft or component manufacturer like Rolls Royce.

Career path

I enjoyed my work so much that when the applications for the Virgin Atlantic Engineering Graduate Programme became available later that year, I jumped at the chance to apply.

I was successful and started a two year programme made up of various 12 week placements. It’s a brilliant opportunity to get a wide knowledge of the many different roles available within Engineering, as well as introducing you to hundreds of people around the company’.

Kirsten’s first permanent position after completing the graduate scheme was within the team managing the intensive maintenance and overhaul of the fleet (a bit like taking your car in for a full service) which was carried out by specialist external suppliers around the world.

The job enabled her to combine commercial, contractual and engineering tasks as well as embarking on lots of overseas travel to visit the maintenance providers.

‘I learned a huge amount about our fleet operation; how we schedule in gaps to the flying programme to carry out the maintenance and how we work with our finance division to manage these very costly maintenance inputs’.

Kirsten says, ‘since my first role, I’ve had the most amazing opportunities at Virgin Atlantic and have been fortunate enough to work on some really exciting projects.

The company has provided me with the training to help me develop in my career and I completed the Association of Project Manager Practitioner certification (APMP) which has proved invaluable in running projects over the years.

I was part of the team transforming Virgin Atlantic Engineering to be ready to accept our flagship fleet of 787-900 Dreamliners, which really helped to modernise our maintenance programmes and reporting and led to the introduction of mobile IT systems and tablets for the Maintenance Engineers to use while working on our aircraft.

We also supported the  training flying schedule to ensure all of our crew could be trained up in time ready for the launch. The timeframes were tight as we had to ensure this was all completed 6-8 weeks before the aircraft went into revenue service’.

Kirsten’s first management role was managing a team of 8 Design & Development Engineers whilst working as part of the ‘Cabin Interiors’ team.

‘My team looked after everything from the galleys and toilets on board the aircraft through to looking at the long term fleet development contracts that maintain the look of the cabin.

We also got involved in the early development of new cabin concepts from a design and customer experience perspective.’

Working on the A350 Project

Kirsten has recently taken over as the cabin technical delivery manager  on the A350 project, the next generation of aircraft that is due to join the fleet.

‘My role is all about turning concepts into reality. Virgin Atlantic is known for trying to do things differently and our Customer Experience team are great at coming up with new and innovative designs for the cabin interior.

My job is to make sure that these designs are compliant to the airworthiness regulations  and that involves liaising with our aircraft and seating manufacturers to ensure that the products which will be installed on our aircraft will be both safe and maintainable, whilst still delivering an exciting and innovative on-board experience for our customers.

I’m confident that with our plans for the Airbus A350 our customers are going to be ‘wowed’ when the aircraft comes into operation.

It’s a great role as I get to interact across all areas of the business from the Customer Experience & Design teams through to the Cabin Crew so I’m not just talking with Engineers every day.

It’s given me a great insight into different sides of the business at Virgin Atlantic and I find that aspect really exciting, it’s amazing to see how my role has evolved over the years’.

Careers Opportunities at Virgin Atlantic

People are central to Virgin Atlantic’s success and if you’re interested in joining us we have a wide range of roles available from Apprenticeships to Leadership Roles as well as amazing learning and development opportunities.

Click here to find out more about opportunities in the Engineering department at Virgin Atlantic

To be the first to know about our vacancies, sign up for job alerts

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