Were You Affected by this Big Error in Qantas’ Job Ad for New London-Based Cabin Crew?

Last week, we reported on the news that Qantas was advertising for new cabin crew to join its London-based team who operate the airline’s history-making flight between Perth and the United Kingdom – as well as flights to Singapore and occasionally onwards to Melbourne and Sydney.

The position is open to anyone who has the right to live and work in Europe without restriction.  So, any British or European passport holder can apply for the position as well as anyone who has a visa – Qantas can’t offer sponsorship due to immigration restrictions in the UK.

Interested candidates were invited to apply for the position online via Qantas’ official careers website.  To stand a chance of being shortlisted for interview, candidates have to be at least 18-years old with a minimum of two years premium customer service experience (we’re thinking high-end restaurants, other hospitality roles or previous cabin crew experience at a premium airline).

There was, however, one small snag with the application form which specifically affected British passport holders.  As part of the application process, candidates had to answer a series of simple questions – essentially, they were pre-screening questions to make sure that anyone who was submitting an application understood what the minimum requirements for the job were.

One of those questions was about the candidates right to live and work in the United Kingdom.  You would have thought, this would be an easy question to answer for the British candidates but there was a glaring error.

The options to answer the question were as follows:

  • I presently hold a valid New Zealand/Australian citizenship and have the right to work in this country without restriction
  • I am not a citizen of this country but I have the right to work in this country without restriction
  • I am not a citizen of the country but have temporary rights to work, with or without restriction
  • I am not a citizen of the country but I have the right to work in this country with certain restrictions
  • I am not sure
  • I do not have the right to work in the country

As you can see, option one explicitly mentions New Zealand or Australian citizenship, whereas all the other answers refer to any other nationality other than the nationality of where the position is based – in this case, the United Kingdom.

That means that British candidates either couldn’t progress their application or had to answer, maybe with “I’m not sure”.  Unfortunately, the way that these type of pre-screening questions work, means that anyone who didn’t answer with one of the top two questions would have been automatically rejected.

When this glaring error was brought to our attention, we immediately got in contact with Qantas.  While the airline hasn’t yet offered an explanation, the job ad was corrected within 24-hours and the application deadline was extended until the 7th June.

The first option now reads:

  • I am a citizen of the country and have the right to work in this country without restriction.

We don’t know whether anyone has been unjustly rejected as a result of this error or whether Qantas will review the applications received to date to correct this issue.

If you’ve been affected by this error, please get in contact and share your story!

Mateusz Maszczynski

Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.

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