ATC Job

Topics: Air traffic control, Air traffic controller, Employment Pages: 8 (2479 words) Published: October 11, 2014
Job Design
Job design may be referred as a way in which an entire job or a set of tasks is organized. Job design helps in determining the tasks and the way they are completed. It considers the factors that influence the work and arrange the job contents and tasks so that the job becomes less risky to the employee’s life. The administrative areas involved in it are job rotation, job enlargement, task/machine pacing, work breaks and working hours (Gupta, 2007). A soundly designed job encourages a variety of good body positions and helps foster feelings of achievement and self-esteem.

Air Traffic Controllers
The people who operate the air traffic control system to accelerate and maintain an orderly and safe flow of air traffic are called the Air traffic controllers. They help in preventing mid-air collisions of the planes. The ATC’s apply such separation rules that help in keeping each aircraft at a distance from others in their area of responsibility, thus moving all aircraft efficiently throughout their airspace. Due to the presence of large responsibility on controllers in the course of performing their duty, this profession is generally observed as one of the most complex jobs, and is notoriously stressful. Stress at Workplace

There have been drastic changes in the nature of work over the last century and still the changes are undergoing at the speed of a whirlwind. Changes inevitably bring stress. So no professional is untouched by stress, starting from a surgeon to an artist or a sales executive to a commercial pilot. Work stress poses risk to the physical health of the employee and consequently influences the health of the organization (Mathew, 2003). Job stress in the early stages can ‘rev up’ the body and improve performance in the workplace (Prasad, 2008). Though, if this condition is permitted to go free and the body is revved up further, the performance will eventually decline and the person's health will degrade (Gupta, 2007). The symptoms of the stress can be insomnia, loss of mental concentration, anxiety, absenteeism, family conflict, anger and frustration. Job stress may arise due to job insecurity, high demand of performance, technological complexities, personal or family problem and workplace culture (Stress at Work, 2008). The final consequence of this job stress is the high turnover of the efficient and knowledgeable employees (Mathew, 2003).

You can get expert help with your essays right now. Find out more... Air traffic controllers are an occupational group who has to manage a highly demanding job, which involves a complex series of tasks. These require a high level of knowledge and expertise, along with a high level of responsibility, with regard to risking lives and also the high economic costs of aeronautical activities.

Productivity and Turnover
As the flights run throughout the day and round the year, the air traffic control is a 24 hour and 365-days-a-year job. Only because of this reason, the controllers regularly work rotating shifts, including nights, weekends and public holidays. When the controllers are forced to work 40 hours a week instead of 32 hours a week and eight hours a shift without breaks; their efficiency and effectiveness reduces drastically. This also leads to the turnover of the controllers. The most suitable example showing the consequence of the above situation is the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO) strike in 1981 in America. Due to the occurrence of the situations similar to the above, 89 percent controllers left the job before retirement age and about 40 percent of these left to collect disability retirement.

Historical Background of the Position and Changes that Took Place over Years The history of air traffic control and the controller way backs to the 1930’s when the commercial air service was developed. The occurrence of some major accidents in the subsequent years reinforced their need. The pilots used to control the flight by...
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