No matter where a plane is departing from, the pilot may contact a flight information centre to receive relevant information regarding safety and operations, deliver their flight plan and obtain a weather briefing. This weather briefing, along with other critical information, will give the pilot an idea of the conditions in the local area or along the flight path, preparing them for the journey ahead.
At an airport serviced by a flight service station, flight service specialists provide vital departure airport advisory services to the pilot that take into consideration local air traffic, runway conditions, weather and other relevant safety information. The flight service specialists paint a picture of the ground and the air conditions to help pilots make safe and informed decisions.
While in the enroute phase of flight, flight service specialists can give pilots information about their flight path, ensuring they are aware of any relevant changes. The flight crew may also contact a flight information centre for updates on the weather or any other information liable to affect their flight.
As aircraft approach the mandatory frequency area for landing, flight service specialists are in communication with pilots, monitoring their movements visually and, at many units, through surveillance technologies. Information delivered during approach will be directly related to the local area, including unexpected weather or traffic changes, and relevant procedures for the site.
At airports with airport advisory services, flight crew may contact flight service specialists for airport advisory services related to conditions and local traffic on the runway and around the airport. They create an efficient flow of traffic for aircraft ranging from local flying schools to charter planes to medevac aircraft.
If aircraft are overdue, flight service specialists at either the flight information centre or flight service station will coordinate searches.
Students on flight information services flight service specialist courses may be posted to any of NAV CANADA’s flight information centres across the country. The FIC selected is based on operational requirements.
Flight service specialists who will work out of flight information centres will train and work out of one of the following locations:
Students on airport advisory services flight service specialist courses may be posted at any of NAV CANADA’s flight service stations across the country. The posting is based on operational requirements.
Depending on the unit, flight service specialists may be working from a tower with 360-degree visibility.
Applicants do not need to have a background in aviation because NAV CANADA provides all the training necessary to become a flight service specialist. We are looking for candidates who will thrive in our operations environment and possess qualities that will serve them in flight services training and their careers.
Think you’ve got what it takes? Here are some of the qualities we look for in our applicants:
The selection process is rigorous and designed to assess the core competencies required to be a flight services professional. The competencies that we assess ensure that we select candidates who have the best chance of success through training.
Please note that throughout the selection process, successfully passing one stage does not guarantee that a candidate will receive an invitation for additional testing. A candidate has 36 months (3 years) to be invited to the next stage in the selection process before their application expires. After the application expires, they may choose to reapply. If at any point in the process a candidate is unsuccessful, there is a 36 month waiting period before they can reapply.
Before applying, potential candidates should take the time to review our website and learn about the different air traffic services career opportunities available at NAV CANADA.
Once familiar with the opportunities, candidates should ensure they meet all our eligibility requirements. If any requirements are not met, the application will be screened out immediately.
Candidates must complete a basic online application through our Workday recruiting system found on the NAV CANADA Careers page and provide details including, but not limited to, academic and professional history.
This is also the opportunity for candidates to select their preferred region and stream (airport advisory services vs. flight information services).
Candidates who meet the eligibility requirements may receive an email invitation to complete an online assessment. There are no travel requirements for this assessment – it can be completed from wherever candidates access the internet. This online assessment is timed and should take approximately 10 minutes. This is the first assessment in the selection process and should be completed promptly in order to be considered for subsequent assessments.
In-person testing sessions are held in each region based on operational requirements. The tests are typically held at our area control centres and require one full day (approximately 6 hours) to complete. The tests evaluate core cognitive abilities required for successful careers in flight services, including memory, working speed, spatial visualization, thinking and reasoning, attention, information processing and simple math. No preparation is required.
Within the Montreal Flight Information Region, candidates will need to undergo language testing to ensure that they are fully bilingual in both official languages (French and English). This testing is completed with a third-party company over the phone.
Full day assessment centres are held in each region based on operational requirements. These sessions are typically held at our area control centres and include various group and individual exercises, as well as simulation activities and an interview designed to assess candidates’ skills, abilities and attitudes.
Candidates should be prepared to discuss their life, academic and work experience, as well as their interest in a career in flight services.
Job offers are given prior to the course start date. If selected for training, candidates will be sent a web-based training program they can expect to be assessed on when they enter the classroom. Candidates are also required to meet pre-employment conditions, such as medical requirements, security clearance and drug testing (including cannabis).
Information will be sent to candidates by our Human Resources professionals, either through Workday, NAV CANADA’s careers portal, or to their personal e-mail accounts.
Training for flight information services begins with an initial flight information course, where students are taught basic meteorology theory, local weather effects and pre-flight and enroute services.
Training for airport advisory services begins with an initial course that combines classroom knowledge training with simulation in a generic airspace.
Upon completion of the initial FIC course, students move into on-the-job training at one of our flight information centres, where they are paired with a certified flight service specialist who serves as an on-the-job instructor until students are certified to work independently.
Upon completion of the initial AAS course, students move into on-job training at one of our flight service units, where they are paired with a certified flight service specialist who will serve as an on-job instructor until students are certified to work independently.
Total duration of training: 14 to 17 months
Salary range for a certified flight service specialist (FIC): ~ $81,000 to $101,000 per annum *
*These rates reflect the 2022 union pay range under the current collective agreement. In addition to the base salary, flight service specialists can receive premiums based on location, holidays and shifts, and bonuses related to services delivered in both official languages and duties as a supervisor or on-the-job instructor.
Total duration of training: 8 to 11 months
Salary range for a certified flight service specialist (AAS): ~ $68,000 to $104,000 per annum *
*These rates reflect the 2022 union pay range under the current collective agreement. In addition to the base salary, flight service specialists can receive premiums based on location, holidays and shifts, and bonuses related to services delivered in both official languages and duties as a supervisor or on-the-job instructor
To make sure we hire and retain the best employees, after graduation we offer favourable salaries and comprehensive benefit plans, including medical, dental and a pension. As well, we offer a relocation incentive allowance for students on basic training courses, and an additional location supplement to those students being posted to remote locations.