SMS Pro Aviation Safety Software Blog 4 Airlines & Airports

4 Aviation Business Challenges for Sustaining Your SMS Programs

Posted by Christopher Howell on Mar 24, 2017 6:00:00 AM

Expectations Drive Aviation SMS Data Management Strategies

Since 2006, aviation safety management systems (SMS) have become a high priority for most aviation service providers as they attempt to find opportunities for:

  • revenue growth;
  • increased service offerings; and
  • operational efficiency.

Due to regulatory requirements, SMS program implementations have become one of the most popular discussion points among aviation safety professionals. With exponential growth of safety data, safety managers struggle not to make significant progress in their SMS implementation, but to sustain progress and demonstrate continuous improvement!

In the early years of SMS implementations, regulatory and SMS auditors have relatively low expectations from service providers. As years pass, these SMS auditors become more sophisticated. Subsequently, their expectations of demonstrable and sustained continuous improvement increase.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

The Truth About What Predictive Risk Management Is

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 23, 2017 6:06:00 AM

What is Predictive Risk Management?

It’s important for aviation SMS programs to be clear about the different types of risk management activities, and use them accordingly.

Predictive risk management is the process of performing risk management activities on potential/hypothetical hazards, risk events, and/or consequences.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

Hazard Identification Compliance Requirement in FAA’s SRM Process– What You Need to Know

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 22, 2017 5:46:00 AM

FAA’s Safety Risk Management (SRM) Process and Hazard Identification Element

The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) SRM compliance requirement for hazard identification controls every U.S. operator's aviation SMS program’s safety culture and risk management program.

The FAA’s SRM process gets a lot of attention – and for good reason.

Despite the fact that the FAA was a little late in adopting and enforcing ICAO's SMS regulatory requirements, oversight agencies from many countries around the world look to the FAA for guidance.

In your risk management program, your Safety Risk Management process will revolve around your operational risk profile.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management, FAA Compliance

How to Conduct Root Cause Analysis in SMS Programs

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 21, 2017 6:02:00 AM

Purpose of Root Cause Analysis

Aviation safety managers have usually have different opinions about exactly what root cause analysis is. Root cause analysis for one safety manager is not root cause analysis for another. This is because there is no standard definition for what root cause analysis is. Even  oversight agencies like the FAA or ICAO shy away from providing much guidance on what root cause analysis is or how to conduct it.

The lack of definition is not necessarily a bad thing. What’s important is to understand the goals and purpose of root cause analysis:

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Topics: 3-Safety Assurance

4 Pillars | The Truth About SMS Continuous Improvement and KPIs

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 20, 2017 5:49:00 AM

What REALLY is Continuous Improvement in SMS Programs?

SMS continuous improvement is one of the three primary elements of the Safety Assurance component of the 4 Pillars of SMS, according to ICAO Doc 9859.

Continuous improvement’s goal is the constant progression of safety performance in a positive direction.

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Topics: 3-Safety Assurance

How to Identify Obstacles Blocking Your Aviation SMS Program?

Posted by Dr. Bob Baron on Mar 17, 2017 6:00:00 AM

Aviation Safety Managers Start With Something

When artists paint on a blank canvas, it gives them an opportunity to start with nothing and creatively turn it into something. This allows the artist to create a picture without having to change or modify a picture that already exists.

When implementing a Safety Management System (SMS), most Safety Managers do not have the luxury of starting with a blank canvas; instead, they must

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Topics: 1-Safety Policy

Is Root Cause Analysis Proactive or Reactive?

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 16, 2017 5:45:00 AM

What is Root Cause Analysis

If you put 10 safety managers in a room and asked them what root cause analysis was, they would have a different answers.

Safety professionals all say that they perform root cause analysis. In their own minds, that’s probably true.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

Picking Apart FAA’s SRM System Description Requirement – Are You Compliant?

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 15, 2017 5:48:00 AM

FAA’s Safety Risk Management (SRM) Process and System Description Element

The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) safety risk management (SRM) compliance requirement for System Description has one clear goal: establish the components of your operating environment’s systems, processes, procedures, and important safety elements.

Despite the fact that the goal is clear, system description is too often skimmed over in aviation SMS programs. This is a mistake.

Why is this element of SRM often skimmed over?

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management, FAA Compliance

How to Prepare Data for Trend Analysis in Risk Management Programs

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 14, 2017 6:08:00 AM

What is Trend Analysis in Risk Management?

It is a common misnomer that trend analysis in risk management is used to forecast future performance. This understanding of trend analysis is both reductive and distorts the purpose of trend analysis in aviation SMS programs.

In aviation safety management systems, the one, thematic question that we need to ask over and over is:

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

What is a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) in Aviation SMS?

Posted by Tyler Britton on Mar 13, 2017 6:00:00 AM

What is a Key Performance Indicator?

Answering the question, what is a key performance indicator, is not exactly as straightforward as it may seem.

This is because key performance indicators, known commonly as KPIs, have multiple uses in aviation SMS programs.

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Topics: Key Performance Indicators


Best Practices for SMS Programs

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Watch SMS Pro Demo Videos

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  • High level overview of SMS Pro;
  • Hazard Reporting & Risk Management walk-through.
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SMS Implementation Videos

These two videos illustrate how to use software tools to manage an ICAO compliant SMS program, including proactive and predictive safety management processes.

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