As more people are taking to the skies again, full-service Indian carrier Vistara has decided to revoke the pay cut it had implemented last year. This will apply to non-management employees only, with management-level executives, including the CEO, still under reduced payroll.
The global pandemic hit the aviation industry hard, with airlines having to suspend operations and in some cases, close shop. A joint venture between Tata Sons and Singapore Airlines, Vistara had implemented the reduced payrolls for nearly 40% of its workforce in June 2020. The plan was to continue it until December 31, 2020, to deal with the low demand of seats and scarcity of cash flow, which was further extended to March 31, 2021.
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Vistara CEO, Leslie Thng, in an email sent to Vistara staff members said, “Our board has approved to cease the pay cut that was implemented for level-1 to level-3 staff from April 1, but the leadership team (level-4 and level-5) and I will continue with our pay cuts at 15 per cent and 25 per cent, respectively.”
The CEO also mentioned that the airline was not out of deep waters yet. The airline’s operating capacity and profits were still below pre-COVID levels and the way forward will still be a challenge, given the prevailing pandemic conditions, he added.
The airlines will also not be paying any yearly increment this coming April. Instead, based on the airline’s financial situation in the first 2 quarters of the new fiscal year, it will review annual increments in October.
Nonetheless, for staff members who are entitled for variable performance in 2020-21, all payments will be cleared in May, based on the company and staff performance in this financial year.
“We must remain vigilant in controlling our costs and be nimble and flexible in our plan and should be able to take difficult decisions if the need arises,” Thng added.