Take Control of the Tower - Modern methods in recruitment for ATCOs

LVNL have developed an interesting method of highlighting the qualities required to  become an air traffic controller.

Through an 'app' for Mobile devices or Tablet devices and on Facebook you can test your skills.
Skills such as 'think ahead, anticipate, never loose sight on safety issues, always stay in control, multitasking, be decisive'.

Through the huge success of the 'app' LVNL also launched a national competition to find the most sucessful players of the game to play in a 'national competition' at the end of this month (27 April). [This is not in anyway a selection procedure - Just an event to select the best player at the game].

The app requires the users to train on certain aspects of the game, building points along the way, before taking part in an hour long final challenge. The training aspects inculde basic landing and selection of runways, closed runways, bird hazards, take off and landing co-ordination, low on fuel emergancies, co-ordination helicopter emergency crossings etc.

The app is not developed to decide if candidates are suitable candidates for Air Traffic Control but more to promote the qualities required to become a succesful candidate for ATC.

From LVNL we heard that the app has been downloaded over 100,000 times. Mostly within Holland but also the interest has become international.

Therefore it has been decided to develop an English version of the game to further develop the 'App' and also the ATC career internationally.

If you would like to play the 'app' search for 'Take control of the tower' at Google Play store or Facebook or Apple Store.

NATS have developed a similar online game to develop such skills on their website recently. These developments through social media and online apps/games could be the way forward to keep up a good interest in the profession. They might not be the most realistic simulation of our profession but they do give an impression. I imagine it won't be long before we have even more realistic test tools online for candidates.