List Integration Essay
To prepare for this assignment, read the Nicolau Award, as well as the case of Addington v. US Airline Pilots Ass’n, 588 F. Supp. 2d 1051 (D. Ariz. 2008). While the court case was later reversed on appeal [606 F.3d 1174 (9th Cir. 2010), cert. denied, 189 L.R.R.M. (BNA) 3120 (2011)], these two documents illustrate/touch upon one (or more) of the methods of list integration outlined below.
write a short – not to exceed 500 words – essay addressing which of these methods of list integration are at play in these cases, either explicitly or implicitly.
One of the major considerations (or impediments) to corporate mergers – especially in the airline industry – deals with how to integrate the unionized employees of both corporations into one new company. As seniority is the most common method by which employees are granted a preference in job security, promotions, and of other awards, it becomes a very important, and heated, issue as to how to integrate the seniority list of the merged corporations.
Exactly what does “seniority list integration” mean?
Quite simply it means the method by which the two seniority lists are combined into one. Prior to negotiating over the integration of the seniority lists, each party must decide how they wish to see it accomplished. There is no set way of doing it. Each group determines what is best for their group.
Below are four commonly used methods of list integration:
Many people believe straight date-of-hire is the only fair way to merge the lists. It is the only method that gives each employee credit for his or her entire career at a unionized corporation, such as an airline. Under this method, one year at Airline X is no more or no less valuable than one year at Airline Y.
This method is fairly basic. For example, the ratio could be 1:1, 2:1, 4:3, 5:7, the combinations are infinite. A 1:1 ratio takes the number one person from Airline X and places her below the number one person at Airline Y (or vice versa); the number two person from Airline X goes behind the number two person at Airline Y and so on. A 2:1 ratio is the same as a 1:1 ratio except that numbers one and two of Airline X go behind the number one at Airline Y (or vice versa).
Each person maintains her/his relative seniority on the new combined list. For example, a person in the top 5% of Airline X will be in the top 5% of the combined list of Airline X-Y. A person who is in the bottom 38% at Airline Y will end up in the bottom 38% of the combined list of Airline X-Y. In a relative seniority integration no one loses or gains relative seniority; each person maintains the same bidding power as if the lists had not been merged.
Used often in pilot list integrations is the career expectation method. This complex method examines each pre-merger group, including the routes, aircraft types, fleet plans, and growth plans. The list is integrated in a way that attempts to preserve each group’s pre-merger career expectations.
Date-of-hire, rank ratio, relative seniority, and career expectation are but four methods used to integrate seniority lists. Often the lists are integrated using a combination of two or more of these methods. Another method of ensuring fairness is to fence all or part of the operation for some period of time.