On ODs, FIs, GCs and DOJs…for KT…and for anyone else interested :)

On ODs and FIs and GCs...for KT :)

As I promised, my next post (this one) will be about the whole recruitment process when applying to Emirates. So be prepared, it won’t be a short one! I’m sure there are still things I left out though, but you can always ask, and I’ll try to answer from my experience 🙂
If you wish to become  an Emirates Cabin Crew, you need to pass a few rounds before you can actually start playing the patience game, waiting for them to pick up the phone and congartulate you for getting the job…
By the time you get there, you will probably know all abbreviations concerning open days and other things. Before I get into explaining the recruitment process, I’ll teach you these abbreviations, for you to make it easier to understand what I’m talking about, and of course for myself, so I don’t have to keep writing these terms in their long forms 😛

So the mysteriouis abbreviations mentioned on most of the forums are the following:
OD – Open Day
FI – Final Interview
AUR – Application Under review
AIP – Approval In Progress
GC – Golden Call

DOJ – Date of Joining

So now that you’re aware of all these, I can start my story of ODs 🙂

My OD was just 3 weeks (and 3 days) ago, so it’s mostly fresh experience I’ll tell you about…
As I got to the location the Open Day was held at, I went to check if my hair and bun and dress was okay, if my stockings were perfect and still had my ruby red lipstick in place 🙂
As I entered the hotel lobby, it was filled with excited and smiling faces, people who came to the open day. Most of them were dressed in business attire (as expected from us), but of course there were some exceptions, a few brave people in jeans. As a first step we filled out a little slip of paper left on the lobby tables, with our names, date of birth and online application numbers.

When it was time to start (9:00 am sharp), two recruiters came out from a room and invited us in. They introduced themselves and talked about the company, carreers, routes, salary, Dubai, and we could also ask questions. They also showed us videos and and graphs on Emirates. While one of the 2 recruiters was presenting the other one collected our CVs and photographs (not everyone had photos though), and registered us. Each of us got a reference number for the day on a sticky tag, which we had to wear all through the day. My number was number ‘lucky’ 3 🙂 Of course I didn’t know it would be so lucky at that point 😛

After the CV drop we were sent out for some 15 minutes at least. When they came out again, the read our numbers out loud. We had to step there to receive a folded sheet of paper. Some of us found Congratulations on it, and some of us didn’t pass the first round. Those who haven’t herad their names, were invited to the room and were offered jobs as ground staff. Some people happily accepted, while some went home.

When they came out, we went in for the second round. There were 2 circles of chairs for us where we had to sit, and were put into groups of 3. Each group received a card, some with cities on them and some with objects. The task was to figure out 3 reasons why the cities would be worth visiting, and 3 uses of the objects, other than their basic use. We were given 10- or 15 minutes to figure out the answer to these as a group, and then present it in front of everyone. In the meantime (when we talked and agreed on 3 points) the reach test was  concluded. A picture was on the wall with a red line on it at 210 cm. If someone didn’t reach that with barefoot (could stand on tiptoe), was out. During our presentations the 2 recruiters were taking notes.

After this round we were sent out again, and after their discussion they came out with slips again. For those who  were successful, the day continued with the English test.

So the test was not hard at all…well it all depends on the level you’re at. But for me it was a relatively easy one. It consisted of a few exercises focusing on undrestanding texts, and the last part was an essay. So as far as I remember the texts were about half a page or a page long, ending with questions to answer or gaps to fill with synonims. The essay topic was 3 things you would improve concerning your qualities (things that help you or move you forward in your job). For example you could write ‘I’m shy at times, but I’m constantly trying to improve it’. Or you could also say that ‘I’m working on my communication skills’. Of course you have to go into details and give examples to almost everything you say. They do like examples! 🙂 And I think it’s logical, they want to get to know you, know your ways of treating people or your skills, qualities, everything, and it’s best to show these through examples. So go prepared, it will come handy at the FI as well!!!

At the end of the English test some people got eliminated again. Those remaining were invited back into the room to sit around in a circle. We then received a sheet of paper with the last task on it. One of us (there was 9 of us at that last round) had to read the story out loud. It was actually me who volunteered. It’s funny thinking about what they expect from us…it’s important to volunteer at times, but at others you gotta just keep calm and listen. There is an in-between state you need to find. Being not too pushy or harsh, and not too shy or silent either 🙂

So the task was the following: There is a hotel with a computer reservation system. There are 8 rooms reserved by guests (all the other rooms and hotels around are full), but due to system error there are only 2 rooms instead of the 8 previously reserved. So there are 8 guests…for example the Travel journal writer on holiday…the Famous party girl…the Politician….the Manager of the hotel chain…the Couple on honeymoon…etc. The task was to discuss in a group, which 2 should be given the reserved rooms, and which guest should be sent away…We were given 15 minutes to discuss among the 9 of us sitting in a circle. Of course we had to speak loud and clear, because in the meantime the two recruiters were taking notes and watching every reaction of ours. As time was up we came to a conclusion about the 2 rooms. Then came another part of the very last round, the role-play. One of the recruiters started acting out the angry guests who were left without rooms. We (as receptionists at the hotel) had to explain the guests why there are no rooms left for them, we had to sooth their anger, and ease the situation. It was a tough cookie, and out of our little group of 9 people only 3 of us made it to the very end of the day…from around 65 people…meaning we made it to the FI held the following day…yeeeey 😀

The 3 of us (after having been selected and told to come back to the room) were then given a sheet of paper with instructions and things to do before and after the FI. For example send them our pending documents in a month (school diplomas, casual and business attire photos, passport copy, etc.), fill out an online psychology test, and what to wear on the FI the next day. Of course the dress code was again business attire…no wonder…they want to see you immaculate, with the perfect bun and a big ruby red smile 🙂

So, as for the FI…the 3 of us  were given 3 different appointments for the following day…since it was a 1 hour one-to-one interview. It was all about our previous work experience. And this is the part of the whole recruitment process where providing examples was most important! They were asking us about negative management decisions, past mistakes we made, problems we found solutions to, situations where we had to break a rule to satisfy a customer, etc.

And now to Katrina’s question here:

My answers were really from my own experience. Once again, it is you they wish to get to know. Therefore you need to be honest when answering their questions, because they ask you to the tinyest details in the examples you give, and they even ask something twice if they wish to. So the story you tell them should either be true, or something you really really practised, because the screen you 😛 And I think it is not a matter of being a leader type or the listener shy person…I think they need both…it is teamwork they need within their crew, and I think it is normal to have stronger and weaker personalities as well to make up a great team. It is the customer service type of person they are looking for…or that’s what I feel…

And one more important thing they told us…they will never reveal what mistakes you made if they don’t hire you or you mess up any part of your interview…and they won’t tell you why your got hired either, what were the good points you earned for which they wanted you…it just works this way…it’s company policy that they mustn’t give out info on how your interview went…and they even told us that they themselves don’t even know why they got hired…so it remains mistery 😀

But returning to your question Katrina – “Name a time you dealt with an upset customer” – I would answer something like this: Last year at our hotel a pipie broke in one of the rooms, and the couple with a little kid came to the reception desk screaming and shouting of anger, because they cannot believe their holiday has to start with problems. The receptionist phoned me in my office to come and solve the situation. Since there were no more rooms in our hotel, they had to be offered a solution. Of course they were loud, shouting at me that it’s not what  they paid for, not what they expected from this place and my colleagues. They were highly disspapointed. So I explained them that it happens, the pipes have just been renewed, however mistakes can happen. Of course it is not the fault of any of my colleagues, so please don’t shout at them…While I told them this, I remained calm and kept my voice down, even when they were still shouting as loud as they could. So the final solution to their problem was that I offered to call the hotel nearby (which we keep a good work relationship with) and provide them a room there on the same price. We even arranged for their transport, an it cost them nothing. By the time we found a solution they calmed down, and when their holiday was over they paid us a visit and said sorry for their rude behaviour, admitting it wasn’t our fault.”

So this is  a possible answer I would give. During the one-to-one iinterview they might ask questions concerning more details, because they like to see the story as a whole…with an intro, a problem, and a solution/conclusion to it. From this they get a picture of you, how you handle people and certain situations…and this is the point of the whole FI…but remember, it is only my point of view, we can never know for sure!

I hope I could satisfy you with my answer 🙂


And now, after this marathon-long post, I am going to sleep with my fingers crossed…my status is still AIP…which means I can still be rejected (it happens in e-mai), or get the YWBC status on my internet surface…it could take a day, a week, a month, or months…nobody knows…and if one gets the YWBC status, then it’s 99% that he/she receives the Golden Call as well, when the recruitment officer tells them congrats and sets their date of joining on the phone…

So now I’m patiently waiting for tomorrow, when they return from their religious holidays…I hope they’ll be all happy and fresh, giving many YWBC-s 🙂


Fingers crossed 🙂





8 thoughts on “On ODs, FIs, GCs and DOJs…for KT…and for anyone else interested :)

  1. I have a question regarding the Final Interview. How did you taylor your answers for Emirates. In my past interviews they have all wanted someone who was more of a leader but Emirates seems to want someone who is submissive/team player. Its hard for me to answer that way because I am the type of person to get things done, so for example “Name a time you dealt with an upset customer” how would you answer that?

    • Hi Katrina! I’m glad you’re reading my posts. I’m sorry, I’m writing this a bit slow (in bits and pieces as I get the time), but as I get to the FI part, I’ll try to talk about what you asked as well. To be honest though, there is no good or bad answer, no tricks or perfect recipes, but I’ll try to give some advice I feel would help…but it really does depend on the recruiters and so many situations. Will be back 🙂

  2. Wow.This was great. I am so nervous about my OD and the thought of possibly getting to a final interview and getting cut is terrifying. But this post really did help me. Good luck to you, and I hope you get it.

    • Hi Katrina! Don’t worry, it will all be fine. To be honest – talking about the OD – I didn’t even feel nervous…surprisingly. I didn’t really take it as a competition…of course it is in some sense, however the most important is who you are and how you react to certain situations. It’s a little bit like running a marathon. Of corse there are other competitors on the road, but it is time and yourself you need to race ‘against’…and not the others…the point of the whole thing is to keep going, keep running and doing your best, even if you’re thirsty, tired or totally stressed out…and that is quite similar to an OD where by the end of the day you will still be wearing that ruby red smile, even if you’re exhausted :p
      If I can help you with anything, any positive thoughts, drop me a line and I’ll do my best…otherwise have a big beauty-sleepbefore your OD and don’t be nervous! I’ll be here cheering! 🙂 Fingers crossed girl!!! (When is your OD?)
      Btw, I’m running my first half-marathon today, dedicating it to Emirates :p and as I promised myself too, if they hire me, I’ll be more than happy to be their Dubai Marathonist cabin crew, giving a go to my 1st marathon there, one day 🙂

  3. Hi, Thank you so much for you sharings.Last month, I got rejection mail from EK even though my status had been AIP before. Now, I have just passed FI for EY but EK is still my dream aviation firm to work for. However, I hear from some that EK requires applicants at least 1 year break before its AD if they work for EY before. I am on the way to check this information. How do you think about this one? Thanks!

    • Hi YenYen,

      Thank you for yur comment, and I’m really sorry about that rejection. How long after your AIP did you get the bad news? 😦 U know it always scares me to read such, and makes me sad in a way…because there is still a chance any of us can get rejected even now, after waiting several weeks (7 in my case now)…

      Well, I haven’t heard about the 1 year wait when signing with Etihad and then trying out for Emirates, but if I find something out, I’ll tell u 🙂 I don’t think it is the case though, because u can go to ODs even if u work for other airlines at that time…
      I’m really hoping for the best for you, and hope to see you in UAE, let it be Dubai, Abu Dhabi or wherever in between or above the two 😉

      Wishing you good luck!!


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