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Up, Up and Away

aircraftLondon Southend Airport, part of the Stobart Group, is the capital’s newest international airport and one of the fastest growing airports in Europe, providing an attractive base for scheduled international passenger and private flights. 

Benefiting from a new terminal building, newly extended runway and a direct mainline rail link to London Liverpool Street, the airport provides services to easyJet and Aer Lingus and, with further expansion plans underway, is set to achieve passenger numbers in excess of 2 million per annum by 2020.    

The airport was seeking to appoint a high calibre Operations Director to lead a diverse team across a range of activities including air traffic control, engineering, fire service, airfield operations, ramp activities, fuelling, security, terminal operations, check-in and passenger handling. This role will be absolutely critical is supporting service excellence and other vital growth targets.

Wickland Westcott carried out an extensive search into the airport and airline sector, with a focus on identifying candidates with the right leadership profile, combining strong commercial acumen with an appreciation of the regulatory environment.  We also provided detailed psychometric reports on shortlisted candidates, and created a highly face-valid case study exercise, specifically assessing their ability to deal effectively with a snow-planning scenario. 

The successful candidate offers a strong pedigree developed with an established airport group, complemented by experience gained with several blue chip manufacturing companies. The key to this successful search assignment was a detailed appreciation of the goals and culture of the Group, underpinned by a granular understanding of the specific Operations role they were looking to fill.