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For the first time in 20 years: British Airways wants to motivate staff with new uniforms

For the first time in 20 years, British Airways is giving its employees new clothes. BA secretly tested the uniforms for months to make sure they were really usable.

Six years ago, American Airlines introduced new clothes for its employees. But the Employees soon complained about the problems. Skin rash, headache and nausea In new uniforms – sometimes with such dire consequences that the cabin crew had to call in sick. And so the airline had to design new work clothes again.

British Airways wanted to prevent something like that. For six months, the airline tested designs by British fashion designer Oswald Boateng—in secret. Cabin and cockpit crew uniforms checked on freight flights across Europe, and engineers at Manchester and Cotswold airports. Feedback from about 1,500 test subjects led to improvements.

“New date of change”

And there was indeed room for improvement, although designer Boateng had previously worked in various roles at British Airways to identify needs. For example, technical staff wanted easy-to-access tool bags for working on aircraft. The men and women working the land suggested gloves that could be used to run discs even in the colder months.

Only after the commentary round was BA ready to introduce the new uniforms. As of spring 2023, more than 30,000 employees will be wearing them. It’s the airline’s first new work uniform in 20 years.

It is not gender neutral

Unlike many in New work clothes introduced in recent months Are you It is not gender neutral. However, designer Boateng wanted to create something completely new. He comments, “Although airlines have long traditions, it was necessary to create a new story of change and transcendence without losing its relevance.”

Designing BA’s new uniforms was “an intense and arduous task”. “It was about creating an energizing change internally,” says Boateng. One of the main goals was “to create something that speaks to and for airline colleagues. Something that inspires and empowers them, encourages them to perform their duties with pride, and most importantly, makes sure they feel seen and heard.”

Check out the new British Airways uniforms in the photo gallery above. Note: If you click on the image, the gallery will open in large format.