- Zero input - Totally automated
- Updated every day with all your sectors, simulators and who you flew with
- Keep track of your actual flight times, day, night and who you flew with
- Airport landing count with full summary of all your flying
- Search on aircraft, station or people
- Add your own sectors or flying
- Full CARs and FOM recency report - tells you when your landings will expire
- Track your flying on Google Maps
- Fully Transport Canada compliant (FAA Coming soon)
When I think about how Crewsware has made my life at Air Canada easier, the toughest question to answer is "where to start?'. I don't know that there's an aspect of the site that I don't use on a regular basis.
For starters, I simply could not bid every month if it weren't for the amazing pairing filters at our disposal. With all the published pairings organized only by check-in time (and not by day, date, or anything else), finding pairings to bid for would be next to impossible. Having the ability to use Crewsware's filters allows me to choose the days I want to work, then identify the best pairings for those days. As a commuter, being able to filter pairings by date, number of days, check-in/check-out time, productivity, and layover destination/length (among others) is crucial to the way I bid. I'd say that my schedule satisfaction has been far above average on the Embraer, and I can attribute that directly to the tools that Crewsware has to offer.
After the bid closes, I routinely have not only my family, but also our Nanny, constantly asking what my (and their) schedule is going to be for the following month. Being able to generate a user-friendly copy of the schedule with the Award Builder as soon as it is released on PBS is a huge asset, as it allows me to share my schedule with those concerned parties a few days before Air Canada makes our schedule available in a similar format.
Once a month starts, Crewsware just keeps on giving. The Pairing Briefs generated the day before a pairing starts are a huge help. Being able to gather all the relevant information in one place is extremely useful. I download it onto my phone, so that it's available offline (especially useful in regions where I don't have data). This gives me access to everything I need -- phone numbers for hotel AND transportation companies, pick-up times, hotel discounts, etc...all in one place! This, combined with the "Who's In Town" feature, gives us all the tools we need to make every layover better.
The "My Layover" section is a great tool as well...having one place that we can use to learn about great new spots to eat/drink/run/visit/avoid in every layover destination is fantastic. I've discovered some of my favourite spots by following recommendations, and have been able to share some of my own discoveries the same way. I've lost track of the number of times that I've heard colleagues say that they enjoyed trying one of the spots I wrote about -- it's a great feeling!
Being pilots, we know we have a reputation for not liking being separated from our money. ;) The same goes for not being paid money that is owed to us! This is yet another example of where Crewsware shines. The Expense Tracker is extremely effective in finding all the missed per diems that would otherwise go unclaimed. One expense claim per year can EASILY cover the far more than the cost of your Crewsware subscription, not to mention having the form automatically filled out for you. Score one for the lazy (or smart) folks among us. :)
I also really enjoy having a look at the Position Planner every now and then. Seeing as how I was hired at a slightly later age than most, it gives me an idea of where I can expect to be as my career progresses, which is nice because I know I won't be retiring after a decade in the left seat of the 777. Knowing roughly how far up the seniority list I can expect to progress before my retirement is a great asset, and helps me have a rough plan of how to use my course rights going forward.
I haven't even touched on what many people see as the most important (and useful) tool on Crewsware, and that's the Electronic Logbook (eLog). I am one of those throwback pilots who still carry a little red logbook with me, and fill it out on every leg. Call me crazy (and delusional), but there's part of me who thinks that maybe one day my grandchildren will find Grandpa's logbooks, and find them interesting. The looks I get from the majority of people I fly with are priceless. Most of them laugh, and say "Umm...I haven't made a single logbook entry since I came to Air Canada, thanks to Crewsware." If I had a dollar for every time I've heard that, I'd be able to pay for Crewsware for the rest of my career. ;) Clearly, it must be an impressive tool.
In the last year, many of my former colleagues from Jazz have joined Air Canada. When they ask about what's different at Air Canada, one of my first answers is usually that their work life is about to get far better/easier, thanks to Crewsware. After a couple of minutes extolling the virtues of the site, they inevitably ask where/when they can sign up. It's just that good.
As I've said in many emails to Dave over the past few years, I am extremely grateful for the work he puts into the site, as it truly is an indispensable tool in making our careers easier. The fact that Dave is always available to answer any queries, and is constantly listening to (and implementing) suggestions to make Crewsware better, is the icing on the cake.
Keep up the great work, Dave, and thanks again!
Its all the little things like the schedule format, who's in town, award planner, etc, that makes your product interesting. For me, the eLog has a become a must have. I will soon be on reserve and Crewsware won't be as relevant as it is, but I intend on using it still.
Crewsware has been an indispensable part of my working life since its inception many years ago. The ability to sort through the pairings each month with Pairing Filter, using multiple parameters has proven to be a very powerful tool, so far beyond the basic data which is published by the company.
The ability to upload a well laid out Pairing Brief to your smartphone/ipad prior to check-in, with every specific detail you could possibly require is incredible.
On a very tangible feature, Crewsware has tracked down and generated missed expense claims totalling over $900/year during the past 4 years! This alone has paid for a career's worth of Crewsware subscriptions! The ease and speed of claiming these missed expenses compared to other methods is beyond comparison!
It is noticeable how the folks at Crewsware do not rest on their laurels! The continual improvements and added features that regularly appear indicate that Dave and his crew are totally focused on making the working life of the line pilot as organized as possible. From the new Award Importer, to the Expense Tracker, the eLog book, the Pairing Brief, the Family Calendar.....I don't think I could get through a month without the tools, and ability to manipulate data that Crewsware provides!! Bravo Dave and your team!
As a father of two young kids, previously divorced with a new fiancée also working in this industry, I can assure you the word schedule is a major one in my vocabulary. My monthly personal scheduling routine is a reverse Swiss cheese model where I’m trying to align all the holes together so everything works out.
Firstly, I use the Pairing Filters when I bid to quickly sort out all the interesting pairings on a given month.
Then, every month, as soon as PBS releases the blocks, I immediately use the Award Builder to create my family calendar. This way I don’t need to wait for all the blocks to be released in Aeronet to get a visual schedule that everybody understands. This saves me precious time that I can use to start the ‘’negotiations’’ and create my final all-inclusive family schedule...
But that’s not all. Another cool feature, the Expense Tracker, allows me to claim hundreds of dollars a year in missing expenses. That makes Crewsware a self-paying tool in my opinion.
Finally, there’s the other cool features, like the logbook (eLog), who’s in town and My Layover that are all small plus-value items that make Crewsware an must-have tool for the modern AC Pilot.
I use the Crewsware Family Calendar on a monthly basis for two reasons. With two young children and a wife that works full time, we are able to coordinate pick up and drop off responsibilities rather quickly with our work schedules. This calendar is posted on the wall at the entrance of the home for easy and quick reference throughout the month. We also use the Family Calender (blank) a month in advance to plan time off requests and potential child care concerns.
I have no reservations stating Expense Tracker feature has paid for itself, over and over again. I used to review my expenses each and every month cross-checking my pairings with the flight summary form. While I was diligent and felt most claims were getting caught, the ease and simplicity of this feature has saved me time and likely recouped extra money into my pocket. This feature recovers expenses that occur from delayed flights, pay protection events, etc that by simply looking at a generic pairing would not be easily identified.
As a PoR (Pilot on Reserve), my wife and I have the Crewsware iCal subscribed directly into our phones. This is a huge benefit as the iCal automatically picks up the awarded flight and inserts it into both mine and my wife's iPhone. She can identify when I'll be home, where I can be contacted for emergencies purposes, etc. With drastic time changes flying overseas (and last minute awards while on reserve) I don't have the luxury of always keeping in touch but this feature allows her to view my schedule if the situation arises.
I have been using the eLog for some time now. It alleviates all stress of recording flight times and an keeps accurate track of flight time per aircraft. You have the ability to save or print your current logbook with a few clicks of the mouse. One never knows when your logbook will be needed but knowing it can be retrieved in a few moments is a very nice feature that Crewsware provides.