United Airlines announced today that it has partnered with three world-class design and apparel companies – Brooks Brothers, Tracy Reese and Carhartt – to inspire and create a new line of uniforms for the carrier’s more than 70,000 front-line employees. Additionally, United will partner with TUMI, the leading international brand of premium travel, business and lifestyle accessories, to be the official luggage provider for all 24,000 flight attendants.
“The partners we’ve selected uniquely match what our employees asked for in a uniforms program – style, comfort and durability,” said Kate Gebo, senior vice president of global customer service delivery and chief customer officer of United. “We recognized early on that this would not be a ‘one size fits all’ solution – front-line employees perform vastly different roles and deserve a uniform that meets their specific needs, created by leaders in the apparel business. Our United family is excited to see how these trusted and innovative brands will deliver world-class uniforms in close collaboration with our employees.”
Committed to a best-in-class uniforms program, earlier this year the airline started what will be a multi-year process to ensure the proper amount of time for collaboration among employees, labor leadership and the partner brands as well as ample time to test uniforms before finalizing designs and materials. Working closely with labor leadership for all front-line teams, employee feedback will be used to inform every aspect of the design process, which will be followed by multiple thorough wear tests with employees to ensure optimal comfort and functionality of designs and materials. The process is structured to deliver comfortable, durable and fashionable uniforms that United’s talented aviation professionals will feel proud to wear while performing their varied roles.
Based on employee feedback from focus groups, open houses and surveys, United identified a variety of distinct brands to meet the needs of employees and help deliver the company’s next-generation uniform program. Over the last several months, Tracy Reese and representatives from Brooks Brothers and Carhartt met with employees at all of United’s U.S. domestic hub locations. United anticipates rolling out new uniforms in 2020.