Human capital development

The effective management of skills within an organization contributes towards employee engagement, which in turn, helps to achieve the Group’s objectives. For each specific category, training programs are developed at Air France and KLM to give employees the opportunity to learn and develop. Whenever possible, relevant training programs are organized transversally across domains or entities in order to share experience and learn from each other. In 2018, preparations were made to develop a new Learning Management system to be used by the different entities of the Group. This system should facilitate an introduction of a standardized process of managing new skills development across the Group.


We have maintained a high level of access to training.
39.7h: number of training hours per employee

Along with the required training necessary for our specific jobs, we offer digital training on various subjects. Our digital platforms are accessible through different types of devices, from anywhere, at any time. These platforms help achieve strategic objectives by developing managerial skills and by making learning fun.

Air France

At Air France, 95% of employees benefited from training in 2018.

The ambitious training policy is key to supporting the employment policy and broader company strategy. It is based on a series of general principles that are reaffirmed on an annual basis and that form an integral part of the Employee Experience:

  • Guaranteed access to training for everyone,
  • Ensuring the visibility of everyone’s skills, notably by developing graduate training and by certifying diplomas,
  • Maintaining economic equilibrium.

In 2018, all recruitment, specifically that flight crews (hostesses, stewards and pilots), but also that of new executives and technicians was supported by the training plan. 

New ways of accessing training were opened to employees, such as My Learning self-service training modules (available to all employees), Massive Open Online Courses, Manager Cafes and days dedicated to HR and manager networks.

The recognition of employee skills via the Validation of Previous Experience scheme continued through a partnership with a network of prestigious universities and programs at all levels of the company and its professions.

In order to meet the need for advanced professional capabilities, the company sets professional mobility, vocational rehabilitation and training as high priorities. One of the key challenges for job mobility is communication.

  • Air France developed systems through which their needs could be advertised to the employees. 
  • Mobility Centers offered specialist career mobility guidance: individual support in job changes, mobility workshops, thematic conferences and job-dating events showcasing the company’s professions.


A number of processes were optimized and new initiatives were launched in 2018, such as:

  • All ground staff were given the opportunity to spend 1.93% of their annual salary on professional development.
  • Talent Management supported the management teams in observing and evaluting the employees by using the Deepening Dialogue method. At Inflight Services, some 3,200 cabin crew members were trained during one of the learning initiatives.
  • Within Flight Safety Training, 1,500 training courses were developed, resulting in 41,000 training days. A new tool was introduced to enable crew to hone their flight safety knowledge: 95% of the staff (9,800) is now using the tool.
  • In the Cargo division, classroom training was replaced by a “HoloLens“ virtual reality training program, which represents an improvement in:
    • Reduction of invested time by 25%;
    • More successful transfer of new skills
  • Return on investment in Human capital development:
    • To measure benefits quantitatively and qualitatively from investments in employee development the Kirkpatrick/Philips evaluation and measurement process was implemented.
    • An ROI model for Learning & Development projects was developed and pilot projects were organized.

Mobility has top priority. In 2018:

  • KLM has succeeded in transferring a significant number of staff internally to other jobs.
  • KLM Transition Center supported over 600 employees in search of new jobs either inside KLM or outside the company since its establishment in June 2016.


Air France and KLM Volunteers programs play an essential role in case of a major event that could jeopardize the safety of our customers, our employees or our operations. These programs bring together 3,500 employees of Air France and 2,000 employees of KLM of different positions, skills, hierarchical levels or geographical locations.

The Volunteers training is periodically updated so that it corresponds to real conditions and forseeable situations, for example, the pressure from social media in case of crisis.

Air France based the training for volunteers, developed in cooperation with different specialists, on testimonies and analysis of real-life situations. This training is organized onsite in order to encourage exchange and personalized answers. At the international staff’s request, this training can also be provided anywhere in the world, in French or in English. One of its goals is to teach the Volunteers how to fulfill their mission while protecting themselves emotionally, and to provide maintenance of competence as regularly as possible.

Since its revision, more than Air France 500 volunteers have been trained. A dozen of trainings were planned to reinforce the program and maintain the highest level of preparation. In 2018, trainings were organized for volunteers in the international offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Bogota.

To support the KLM Care program, an emergency response program in the event of an accident involving a KLM aircraft, Care Introduction Training, has been developed, and eight Care Events were organized as refreshers for 300 KLM volunteers.

KLM started a partnership with Deedmob, a digital platform that brings together supply and demand for volunteers. Within the HR Community a Deedmob pilot project was started. A choice was made among charities whose work matches that of KLM Compass.  


We continue to fulfill our responsibilities towards young people entering the labor market.

To attract and recruit young talents, Air France and KLM have close links with schools and universities. They are actively involved in attending university fairs, working on the development of business-education partnerships, and organizing student visits of company offices.

Air France

In 2018, an innovative immersion program initiated by young managers and backed by the HR department, involved 50 young managers who sported the uniform of a ground handler or flight attendant during the summer. Experiencing the customer relationship on board and at the airport, understanding other people’s jobs, and going behind the scenes are key to meeting the customer’s expectations better. This practice will be applied to all young managers in 2019.

As part of the Sixth Air France Internship Charter, Air France offers young professionals the opportunity to gain quality work experience. In 2018:

  • More than 2,700 apprentices and 1,000 new interns from further and higher education institutions were welcomed and trained.
  • In order to continue the development of internships at Air France, the ambitious program was expanded to cabin crew professions. We welcomed more than 250 cabin crew apprentices who had up to 300 hours of training that resulted in a professional certification (Cabin Crew CQP) recognized across the air transport industry.
  • Initiatives were made to support access to employment for apprentices in the local area, such as workshops for job seekers, job fairs and networking with employers in the Paris-CDG airport employment area.
  • In March 2019, Air France received the “Prime Employer” label awarded by the “Engagement Jeunes” platform. The award is given in recognition of Air France’s recruitment policy that favors the integration of interns, as well as the managerial quality of its tutors and mentors. The award also reflects Air France’s strong commitment to offering a unique and quality experience to its interns.

220 Air France volunteers have signed up for the role of University Relations Ambassador, representing and promoting Air France as an employer to potential candidates at their own former schools or universities. One of such actions were the video presentations now available on our Career’s site, where Air France’s young potentials talk about their roles within the company. 

The ambassador network also organized student hackathons, where original challenges were aimed at creating special links with students and recruiting new talents in the long term.

For example, in 2018, Air France IT Division organized a hackathon for Paris Ponts et Chaussées engineering school students on the topic of aircraft itinerary optimization (i.e. designing an aircraft schedule) that draws on the rise of data science, optimization and big data. As a result, during one day, 45 students from the school have been working on an algorithm designed to lower fuel costs. This is one example of a successful school relations campaign which opens the door to a long-term partnership with the Ponts et Chaussées school and increases the appeal of air transport sector for young students.


A tight labor market makes finding new young talent a challenge. In 2018:

  • 21 new Young Potentials were hired
  • 878 interns were welcomed by KLM and have been given the opportunity to gain valuable work experience and get prepared for the labor market.

The high number of applications for both the Development Programs (1,836) and internships (approximately 1,200) testifies to KLM’s attractiveness as an employer. This year KLM ranked among the top 10 of the most popular employers for both IT professionals and technicians, salespeople and people with social studies background.

KLM works intensively together with universities. For example, a Design Doing program is done in cooperation with TU Delft, set for a five year period (until 2021). Its goal is to expand creative capabilities within KLM.

  • With this purpose, KLM and TU Delft organize Design Doing-events which are unique because the students get to deal with the operational KLM environment. This means real passengers on a real airport in a real airplane.
  • A new master’s course named X-lab has been developed for KLM, launched in September 2018. The students of X-lab are being mentored by KLM colleagues from ground services, digital passenger operations, customer experience and digital. Some of the goals achieved are:
    • Designing an implementable solution which would leverage digital technology to improve the turnaround processes and customer service delivery.
    • Setting up a fun cross-divisional training program for operational employees



8,510 employees, accounting for 9.6% of Air France-KLM staff, are placed in international establishments at different local Air France-KLM offices.

Guided by the Social Rights and Ethics Charter, the Group applies local collective bargaining agreements, settled on with unions or other relevant parties, according to local standards.

Several initiatives took place in 2018:

  • The Air France-KLM employee experience, called “‘Our Journey”’ for local staff of commercial, cargo and E&M, was developed over 2018, and will be implemented worldwide during 2019.
  • Initiatives related to E-HR (joint performance appraisal) were aimed at enhancing efficiency
  • Talent management and and succession planning: supporting international mobility of local staff by introducing a transparent remuneration and benefits package platform (Air France-KLM International Mobility “AKIM” program).