Smiling Delta staff member assisting a customer

Talent Management

Delta people are encouraged and empowered to “keep climbing” in their careers through a portfolio of training and development programs ranging from curated career planning to on-demand learning resources.

In 2023, we continued to enhance iGrow, our online learning portal of skills-based training and career development resources. Based on feedback captured through post-training surveys, we regularly add courses mapped to specific roles or skills and take steps to deliver a more personalized and intuitive user experience. iGrow also includes guided learning curricula specifically focused on skills and competencies aligned with performance objectives. Additionally, we relaunched Leadership 365, an approximately six-month “flexible learning journey” that combines self-paced, online learning and immersive, in-person workshops to support leaders in elevating Delta’s culture and driving high performance, as well as development in their specific areas of interest. The overall program received a satisfaction score of 4.8 out of 5.0 based on post-program surveys.


New Delta employees hired and trained in 2023


Attrition rate


This table illustrates the average computer-based training hours logged by employees per division by merit and scale in 2023. These numbers do not include in-person or hands-on qualification training and testing hours, simulator time, and more.

Merit 1 25 26 7 9 141 27 10
Scale 2 15 25 74 10 143 69 10
  1. Merit contributors are paid a salary based on benchmark data from their peers at Delta and across multiple industries and are evaluated on categories spanning skill and experience to innovation and leadership.
  2. Scale employees are paid an hourly wage while also receiving competitive pay offerings and flexible benefits driven by performance and include pilots, flight attendants, maintenance technicians, customer service and reservation agents, baggage handlers and more.



Of all job openings filled externally in 2023 did not require a college degree


Of corporate and management openings in 2023 filled with talent in customer-facing roles

(exceeding our long-term goal of 25%)

Skills-First Approach to Talent

We embrace a Skills-First approach to hiring and development that prioritizes skills, background and experience over traditional education requirements. Our equity-focused model aims to create a more equitable workforce and enrich the careers of all employees by increasing access to higher-earning career opportunities through targeted development, skill upgrading and mentorship programs. By providing resources that support clearly defined career pathways, employees gain greater access to internal mobility opportunities and agency in their career decisions.

In 2023, we continued to invest in building a strong talent pipeline through hiring, career-path development and learning resources that level the playing field and position employees for upward mobility and sustainable success:

  • Introduced Skills-First hiring training for recruiters, hiring managers and interview panelists, as well as Skills-First coaching and development toolkits for managers
  • Enhanced our Career Talent Profiles with a new taxonomy that enables Talent Acquisition teams to search for internal candidates by skills that map to open roles
  • The promotion rate for our leadership accelerator programs, which include executive sponsorship, networking and skill building, resulted in promotions almost three times higher than peers
  • Piloted a Corporate Readiness Curriculum to help frontline employees build critical thinking and other skills required for professional roles
  • Collaborated with our BRGs – notably BOLD, SHE and ADELANTE – to curate skills-based learning and leadership development paths for diverse talent
  • Expanded our iGrow internal career learning library with self-paced content focused on digital and soft skills


Delta's focus areas of impact for talent management are: employee engagement, recognition, assessments, learning, development, recruiting, performance and compensation.


Skills-First Apprenticeship Program

The Skills-First Apprenticeship Program focuses on hiring, developing and promoting people with relevant skills and experience for open roles at Delta. Launched in 2022, this full-time, paid apprenticeship formally transitions participants into roles on teams including Human Resources, Revenue Management, Information Technology and Corporate Audit. The immersive experience, which spans up to two years, includes on-the-job learning and leadership support. We offer additional resources tailored to specific skill sets and workgroups in conjunction with this apprenticeship program.


Skills-First apprentices brought on board in the program’s first year

Delta Analytics Academy

The Delta Analytics Academy trains frontline employees with in-demand data analytics expertise to enter the field without traditional education or cost barriers. The three-semester virtual learning program created with Georgia State University allows participants to remain in their current roles with access to executive-level analytics coaching. Graduates are eligible to interview for a full-time analytics role at Delta.


Delta Analytics Academy graduates, to date


Since 2018, the Propel Pilot Career Path Program has provided an accelerated runway for future aviators to reach the Delta flight deck. The groundbreaking initiative includes customized pilot training for Delta employees (Company Pilot Career Path), college students (Collegiate Pilot Career Path) and community partners (Partnership Organization Pilot Career Path, Intern Career Path and the Endeavor Ambassador Path), culminating in conditional job offers at Delta.

In 2023, the program introduced a fourth pathway: the Delta Propel Flight Academy. Aspiring pilots – who can receive up to $20,000 in financial support from Delta – complete private, instrument, commercial and certified flight instructor training in Vero Beach, Florida, through our partners at Skyborne Airline Academy (Skyborne). Students who complete certified flight instructor training are offered a job as a certified flight instructor with Skyborne. After completing 1,500 hours of instruction, they are eligible to become a first officer at a Delta Connection Carrier.

  • 171

    Participants completed a Propel pathway and now fly for Delta

  • 870

    Aspiring pilots currently enrolled