RotorDrone|November/ December 2019
Drones are indeed a disruptive technology, and countless industries are reaping the benefits of adding UAV technology to their toolbox. From cost savings to improved efficiencies, drones are proving to be revenue-generating machines.
Big companies aren’t the only ones reaping the rewards of the drone revolution. With low barriers to entry and a growing list of uses for drones, just about anyone has the chance to take advantage of the boom. With very little start-up money and only a few hours of training, most hopefuls can become commercial drone pilots.
For many hopeful and newbie commercial drone pilots, finding work can be a bit of a challenge. In many regions, there is already an oversaturation of pilots. Densely populated cities typically have no shortage of aerial photography professionals. Professional photographers were some of the earliest adopters of UAV technology in recent years. As a result, many have well-established businesses with numerous repeat clients.
Unfortunately, there are also many unlicensed, nonprofessional drone operators looking to make some extra money. These rogue operators charge very little for their work and often operate in unsafe conditions. Many have no idea of the dangers of flying in restricted airspace. Their illegal commercial operations are a danger to the skies, and sour our industry’s reputation in the public eye.
New pilots face the difficult task of gaining a foothold in this crowded field. Fortunately, there are now numerous networks for drone pilots looking for work. DroneUp (droneup. com), Drone Base (dronebase.com), and Precision Hawk (precisionhawk.com) are just a few of the many platforms available for commercial drone pilots. These sites are an excellent place for new pilots to start, and they offer established pilots opportunities to fill openings in their work schedules.
If you are not familiar with these networks, the sites bring together commercial drone pilots and clients who are looking to hire pilots. Pilots build online profiles that typically include bios, portfolios, training, certifications, and a list of what drones and equipment they use. A client can either deal directly with the site and set a budget for their project, or they can place the project on the open forums for pilots to bid on competitively.
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November/ December 2019