About British Airways
British Airways is the second largest airline in the UK with over 250 planes in its fleet and carries 45 million passengers a year. Founded in 1974 by the merging of four nationalised airlines, it became a private company in 1987. The airline serves over 160 different destinations globally and made £13 billion in revenue in 2018.
Over the next 5 years, British Airways are investing £6.5 billion in staff development, customer service, and 73 new aircrafts. Their reputation and dynamic culture makes British Airways a sought-after company to work for across a number of sectors.
British Airways Application Process
The application process for the graduate schemes, placements, and internships is:
Online ability tests
The first thing to do is submit an online application, however British Airways asks that you answer eligibility questions before you can put in a full application. Usually, these kinds of questions will be regarding your right to work, ability to acquire necessary travel visas, etc.
If you meet the eligibility requirements, then you can submit your CV and put in an application for your desired role. Here, you can show off your previous experience, relevant skills, and unique selling points.
Like most big companies, British Airways uses ability tests as additional assessments for its applicants. These tests help to give more information about your skills and personality, so they can better judge whether you're the right fit for the company. Different ability tests will be given depending on which role you have applied for to focus on the ones most relevant to the job.
Situational Judgement Test
Once you put in an application, everyone is asked to take a situational judgement test, otherwise known as a cultural assessment. These tests gauge your behaviour and work style by presenting you with workplace scenarios and asking you to choose the response you think is most appropriate. The scenarios will be specific to work-related issues that may arise while working at British Airways specifically, so this test will also give you an insight to working life and British Airway's culture.
Numerical Reasoning Test
If you pass the situational judgement test then you will be invited to take more ability tests, one of which is the numerical reasoning test. For pathways such as data analytics, finance, and logistics, strong numerical skills are crucial, so numerical reasoning tests are a good way for employers to assess how well you process data.
Typically, numerical reasoning questions deal with basic arithmetic, graphs, percentages, and data analysis. The British Airways test will give you work-related questions, so you may have to calculate time zones or flight times, showing how quickly you can process the information and get the correct answer.
Inductive Reasoning Test
Another ability test that you can be asked to take is an inductive reasoning test. These are also known as abstract or diagrammatic reasoning tests, which ask you to identify relationships between shapes and patterns. While these tests do not rely on prior knowledge, they do require a high level of logic and ability to follow complex questions, allowing employers to assess your problem-solving skills, how well you deal with new concepts, and work under pressure.
The video assessment is an asynchronous interview, which means that you record answers to questions that are later reviewed by the hiring managers, instead of a live interview. The British Airways interview questions are competency based and will be specific to the programme you have applied for.
For video interviews, you are usually given 1-2 minutes to read and process the question and then 2-3 minutes to give your actual answer. There will also be an opportunity to record practice questions, so you can get used to the process without having your responses recorded.
Depending on the programme, you may also be asked to complete a couple of written responses as well.
If you pass the assessment tests then the final stage of the process is an assessment centre where you will be given more activities and an interview.
Most assessment centres include a group exercise to gauge how well you work in a team and what your working style looks like in a more realistic scenario. Usually, you will be given a work-related case study and asked to discuss and come up with a solution as a group.
Similar to the group exercise, the written exercise asks you to read through a work-related case study and answer questions on it. This task is designed to show how well you process information and can identify key points, as well as your written communication skills.
The roleplay is an individual task where you will have to simulate a workplace scenario and respond as you would when on the job. This will be relevant to the programme you applied for, and may include situations such as dealing with a customer or client to sort out an issue.
The final stage interview will be with the relevant managers to your programme. This interview will include motivation and competency questions, meaning that they are looking at why you want to work for British Airways and if you are a good fit for the company, as well as if you have the skills necessary.
Before going into this interview, you should research the company's values to make sure that you can answer questions on how you embody them. You should also learn about the business history of British Airways, particularly pertaining to the sector that you are applying for.