Aviation

Air New Zealand appoints new chief people officer and board members

Huntley Mitchell

Huntley Mitchell

While Air New Zealand has flagged thousands of job cuts in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s encouraging to see the airline is still hiring.

Earlier this week, Air NZ announced the appointment of Joe McCollum (pictured above) as its new chief people officer, effective 14 April 2020.

McCollum will take over from Jodie King, who is leaving the airline to become chief people officer at Vodafone New Zealand.

Previously, McCollum worked as a group HR director at Spark and, prior to that, headed human resources for global chemicals giant ICI plc based out of London. He has also worked across the software, music and media industries.

Air NZ chief executive Greg Foran said McCollum will bring to the Kiwi carrier an extensive depth of global change management and executive leadership experience forged in challenging environments.

“Joe is no stranger to the type of large-scale, rapid workplace change that Air New Zealand has ahead in the wake of COVID-19,” Foran said.

“He will be a key member of the team to rebuild our airline.”

The Kiwi carrier has contracted one of New Zealand’s most experienced employment relations practitioners, Paul Diver, to support McCollum with the workforce change management process currently underway.

Air NZ recently revealed the size of its workforce will reduce by up to 3,500 roles in the coming months, and anticipates to be 30 per cent smaller in 12 months’ time.

The airline also announced this week that former global CEO of Avis Budget Group, Larry De Shon, and former Freightways managing director Dean Bracewell, will join its board of directors from 20 April 2020.

De Shon and Bracewell have been appointed to fill the boardroom chair left vacant by Sir John Key, who retired as a director last month, and as part of succession planning for when deputy chairman Jan Dawson steps down at Air NZ’s annual shareholders’ meeting in September.

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