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United Interview (4 Sep 96)
I’m attaching as much as possible—I hope this helps!!! I’m not sure how I got the interview so quickly…I’m guessing that United rates Instructor time quite high since I only had 2077 total hours. I had two letters of recommendation from United pilots (everything that I’ve heard says that two recs will max you out on points).
Once you get the interview United will fly you out for the two day process on a positive space business pass. The first day is the Frasca Simulator. Don’t be too afraid of this (it flys like a heavy airplane so your C-5 experience helps a great deal). However, I highly recommend spending the $450 for the two hours of sim prep and two hours of interview prep at Arnautical. Their Frasca is quite a bit more sensitive and it will really give you a workout. They teach the exact profile that United uses so at least you’ll be familiar with it when you go to United’s frasca. The sim guys are absolutely super…they’ll have you take off your jacket and loosen your tie and they really helped me to relax. One major hint: the last two ILS’s have identical winds – it starts out with a crosswind requiring about 7 to 8 degrees of crab and then slowly changes direction to a tailwind (requiring a power reduction) and then a crosswind from the opposite direction. The ADI has expanded localizer and glideslope raw data on it that is more sensitive than the HSI—I highly recommend using the pointers on the ADI since your crosscheck will be more focused and you will get trend information much quicker. Also, during the last 400’ set the power and leave it…the power settings they teach you will be very close and it’s much more important to focus your crosscheck on keeping localizer and glideslope centered.
Immediately following the sim, you will be told if you passed. Then you will be scheduled for your interview the following day.
I was interviewed by Holly Hoover (Employment Rep) and John Carter (Captain). Here’s how it went:
- Introductions / How was the flight / How was your sim (who did you do it with)
- How did you prepare for this interview
- Is the address/phone # on your application correct
- They verified current phone numbers for my supervisors on my 10 year employment history
- They also looked hard for any gaps in my employment history
- Were you happy with your grades in college
- Do you have any letters of recommendation to give us at this time
- Will these employers give you a positive recommendation
- I wasn’t asked any questions about my flying time (be conservative..no other or student time counts)
Story Telling (be brief and specific)
- Trace your aviation career for us in five minutes or less
- Why are you getting our of the Air Force
- When was your last flight in the C-5 (I’ve been grounded for 16 months)
- Why did you wait so long to send in your application if you knew you were getting out
- Tell us about a time when you were criticized
- Tell us about your worst emergency and how you handled it
- Tell us about a time you had to be assertive as a subordinate
- Tell us about a problem you had where no checklist applied
- Have you ever been pressured to break a company policy/rule
- Have you ever disobeyed the FAR’s
- Have you ever busted a checkride
- Ever been involved in an FAA incident or accident (reported or unreported)
- Tell us about a time you had a conflict in the cockpit
- What would you do if a passenger has a heart attack (field is slightly below mins and your departure alternate is two hours away)
- You’re flying non-rev (not in uniform) and the lady next to you is loudly voicing her displeasure with United
- Would you mind being based in Anchorage
- 275 miles in 45 minutes…how fast are you going—Trick: 275/3 X 4
- Decode this weather strip (new metar)
- Asked how to identify the final approach fix on a Jeppesen approach
- · ie - radar, LOM, I-DME
- When can you descend on the approach
- What is the lighting on 26R at Stapleton
- Name some of the things on the #1 hydraulic system on the C-5
- How does the gear come down on the Trinidad
- Besides the emergency generator what other sources of electrics do you have on the C-5
- How long does a microburst last
- When do the peak winds occur
- Coming in to land and the plane in front of you reports a 15 knot windshear…what would you do
- You lose your radios after takeoff in IFR…what would you do
The whole thing lasted about an hour and 15 minutes. They were both very professional and not antagonistic at all….however, they were not overly friendly either. I would have to describe the overall tone of the interview as cordial. They took a lot of notes and didn’t really probe too much…I just answered the questions and they wrote.
They called a Captain that I knew that same day to ask about me (he had not written me a letter of recommendation but I did bring up his name in the interview). I later found out from him that they were concerned about why he didn’t write me a letter. He told them I already had two recommendations and he thought I’d maxed out the points already so there was no real benefit. They later told him that they put a great deal more weight on recommendations if they come from Captains / standards pilots….lesson: try to get a recommendation from a Captain if you can.
One more thing…all the gouge says you’ll find out within 3-5 days if you’re hired. I got my call 15 days after the interview and so did three other guys that got hired in my time frame so don’t give up until the end. Good Luck!