SMS Pro Aviation Safety Software Blog 4 Airlines & Airports

Christopher Howell

Manage global operations for aviation safety management systems (SMS) software that facilitates regulatory compliance, such as ICAO, FAA, Transport Canada, IS-BAO. Manage software engineering support efforts to local Alaska businesses. Assist in design, implementation, testing and documentation of complex, three-tier Windows applications relying heavily upon secure Web services technology.
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Recent Posts

How to Monitor and Control Risk in Aviation SMS

Posted by Christopher Howell on Jun 26, 2019 5:05:00 AM

Safety Professionals Need to Understand Risk Control Strategies

Aviation safety managers must monitor risk controls for effectiveness as they are associated with many hazards encountered in daily operations. There is an expectation of regulatory agencies that aviation service providers' implemented safety management systems (SMS) will:

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

Time to Review Your Aviation SMS Data Management Strategy

Posted by Christopher Howell on Jun 17, 2019 6:01:00 AM

Aviation SMS Are Not Required by All Operators

In November 2006, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICA0) mandated the implementation of formal aviation safety management systems (SMS) for most commercial aviation service providers. Besides the usual suspects of large airlines and airports, the list of required operators includes

  • flight schools,
  • aircraft designers,
  • aircraft parts manufacturers, and
  • aircraft manufacturers.

To provide SMS implementation guidance, ICAO released the Safety Management Manual (SMM), now in its fourth edition. This user-friendly SMS Bible provides an abundance of useful information to help safety professionals and managers understand SMS requirements as they undergo the SMS implementation process.

While most commercial aviation service providers are required to implement SMS, this is not a blanket mandate. There are many exceptions, notably local private operators that do not fly outside their country of origin and very small airports. If you are uncertain whether your operations require an aviation SMS, contact your civil aviation authority (CAA) or review your CAA's SMS regulatory guidance if available.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

Despite Corruption, IATA Operational Safety Audits Enhance Aviation SMS

Posted by Christopher Howell on Jun 4, 2019 5:21:00 AM

Aviation Safety Audits Are Not for Just Airlines

Aviation safety managers must be prepared for a never-ending chain of audits. This is a fact of life, whether you are working at:

  • Airlines;
  • Airports;
  • Ground handling companies;
  • Flight schools; or
  • Aviation maintenance organizations.
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Topics: 3-Safety Assurance

How to Choose Your Aviation Safety Database Solution

Posted by Christopher Howell on May 27, 2019 6:03:00 AM

Which Aviation Safety Database Should We Choose?

Aviation safety managers become apprehensive at certain points of their careers. We see this frequently when:

  • They are making a decision to purchase an aviation safety database solution; or
  • They are setting up a new safety database for their SMS program; or
  • They are assigned to manage an existing aviation SMS database program.
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Topics: Aviation SMS Database

Aviation SMS Implementation Challenges for Small Service Providers

Posted by Christopher Howell on May 20, 2019 5:43:00 AM

Disadvantaged Part-Time Safety Managers

Incredible challenges assail aviation safety managers at smaller operations who are implementing aviation safety management systems (SMS). In short, their organizational size and make-up present a very real hazard that must be recognized and mitigated.

Recognizing the hazard, as well as awareness of possible remedies will be a first step toward overcoming these SMS implementation challenges. What is the biggest hurdle for these small service providers who are required to implement an aviation SMS? How do other small service providers manage this hazard?

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Topics: Aviation SMS Implementation

4 Tips for Passing Aviation SMS Audits -with Free Resources

Posted by Christopher Howell on May 15, 2019 10:00:00 AM

Why Passing an Aviation SMS Audit Is Critical

Over the past dozen years, an aviation SMS audit has become a necessary and commonly difficult task for:

  • Airlines;
  • Airports;
  • Aviation maintenance organizations;
  • ATC; and
  • Flight schools.
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Topics: 3-Safety Assurance

5 Things You Wish You Knew before Your First Aviation SMS Implementation

Posted by Christopher Howell on May 8, 2019 6:00:00 AM

Aviation SMS Implementations Take Years to Fully Mature

Safety managers are fresh, fully motivated when starting their aviation SMS implementations.

SMS Implementations are marathons, not sprints. Initially, you will be able to have many short bursts to get you out of the starting gate. These short bursts may be attributed to:

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Topics: Aviation SMS Implementation

What Is a Gap Analysis in Aviation SMS?

Posted by Christopher Howell on May 7, 2019 6:05:00 AM

What Is a Gap Analysis Used For

Both new and experienced aviation safety professionals sometimes have to ask themselves, what is a gap analysis and why am I using it?

The first thing anyone needs to understand about a gap analysis is that it is a process used by both new aviation safety management systems (SMS) and maturing SMS. This process is used by aviation service providers to determine:

  • The current state of the SMS;
  • The desired state of the SMS; and
  • Where the “gaps” between those states are.
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Topics: 3-Safety Assurance

What Should Be the Number One KPI in the Aviation Business?

Posted by Christopher Howell on May 2, 2019 6:01:00 AM

Questions on Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for Aviation

Aviation safety professionals frequently email our subject matter experts (SMEs) for opinions regarding aviation safety management systems (SMS) and advice as to managing key performance indicators (KPIs). Goal setting relating to key performance indicators is also another very common thread we are asked about.

In the case that follows, I was asked:

"If I were to join the one KPI on Quality & Safety for a CEO in the Aviation business, what would you recommend me to suggest? My intention is to open this in the CEO’s KPIs as a performance target. Please assist if you can and thank you in anticipation!"

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Topics: Key Performance Indicators

What Is Proactive Hazard Identification and Risk Management in Aviation SMS

Posted by Christopher Howell on Apr 30, 2019 6:07:00 AM

What Is Proactive Hazard Management

I have a friend across the globe who is having troubles getting his head around proactive hazard identification and the resulting risk management processes in his aviation safety management system (SMS). This friend naturally prompted this blog article to explain an approach to proactively manage hazards and to document hazard identification and risk analysis activities.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

Site content provided by Northwest Data Solutions is meant for informational purposes only. Opinions presented here are not provided by any civil aviation authority or standards body.



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