17 June 2009 | Martha McKenzie-Minifie
British Airways (BA) wants staff to do unpaid work to help it cut costs.
In a statement today BA said airlines were facing "the toughest-ever trading environment". It continued: "We are asking all staff across the business to play their part by volunteering to work part-time, take unpaid leave or do unpaid work, to help reduce the overall cost base of the airline."
It emphasised the steps were voluntary.
BA is not alone in pursuing alternative working arrangements for employees in the downturn.
On 1 June, Spanish bank BBVA announced its staff could take three to five years of leave and receive a third of their usual pay, as it moved to cut staff costs (Buyography, SM online, 3 June).
BA chief executive Willie Walsh last month said reducing costs was a "very significant focus" for the business, which released preliminary results for the year to 31 March showing a pre-tax loss of £401 million (Web news, 22 May 2009).