At its heart, SMS for the airlines is a great idea. It evokes visions of a clear mission statement from executive staff flowing downward to everyone in the organization, incentivizing all staff to work together to report safety concerns without fear of reprisal, and ultimately creating a safer airline. If only it were that simple.
- How are you going to track all of those hazards?
- What method do you have in place now to report corrective actions?
- When you change a procedure in one manual, how do you know that it doesn’t appear in another?
- Do your manuals even contain all of the data that they are supposed to? Can you create a “hot” Letter of Compliance right now?
- Outside of FOQA and ASAP, are there other ways for employees to anonymously report hazards? How do you prove that you addressed each hazard presented to you?
- If the FAA asks for a three year look back of similar hazards, can you get it for them in less than 60 seconds?
- Are you getting hazard data to the training department for inclusion into recurrent training? What about data from other carriers with similar operations – are you reviewing that data and collaborating with them?
The concepts are simple, but the maintenance and tracking of SMS is complex. That doesn’t mean, however, that it has to be difficult for you. Like everything we do, we have a way to make your life easier in this area. Find out how.