Ryanair's turbulent internal culture visualized
Ryanair ($NASDAQ:RYAAY), the Irish budget airline, is entering choppy air when it comes to its employees.
Today, Ryanair pilots and crew in Germany went on strike and the airline canceled 150 flights. The airline's employees plan to strike for a full 24-hour period. Another larger strike among cabin crew members is planned for late September.
Needless to say, employees are not happy with their employer — mostly because of issues involving unions, but we're not going to delve too deeply into that — and the data reflects this overwhelming displeasure as well:
On Glassdoor, where employees rate their present or former company anonymously, Ryanair has an overall rating of 2.8 and a business outlook rating below 50%, indicating that its employees are indifferent and skeptical of the airline's future more so than optimistic. Ryanair's CEO since 1994, Michael O'Leary, also has a subpar rating among his employees with a 38% approval rating.
Of course, any upward movement in ratings is a positive for the airline, and should be interpreted as a promising sign of things to come for Ryanair. However, when comparing the company to its American low-cost airline counterparts Spirit Airlines ($NASDAQ:SAVE), Southwest Airlines ($NYSE:LUV), and JetBlue ($NASDAQ:JBLU), it definitely isn't flying high.
Looking at each airline's overall ratings from the past year, Ryanair's rating is almost half a point less than Spirit's rating, and a full point or more away from Southwest and JetBlue. Its business outlook in comparison to these three airlines is also well under average, plotting over 10 percentage points below JetBlue and Spirit.
And when comparing all four airlines' chief executives, Ryanair definitely lags behind.
JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes, the least approved of the low-cost United States airline trio, has nearly double the approval rating that O'Leary has. Like every other comparison before this, Ryanair has not come close to similar airlines in America in the past year.
Fortunately for Ryanair, their ratings across the board are all trending upwards. However, with more strikes on the horizon for the Ireland-based airline, one can only wonder if those same disgruntled pilots and crew members will become more vocal about their grievances on Glassdoor.