Aviation Safety Management - Baines Simmons
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Aviation Safety Management

Leaders in aviation safety management services for compliance and performance improvement

Safety performance is fundamentally dependent on the performance of your aviation safety management system and ensuring it is operating at an effective level of performance is now becoming a legal requirement on those holding responsibility.  Understanding what makes up these management systems, what drives and influences their performance and  how to measure their performance is all part of the new art of professional aviation safety management.

Recent and emerging regulation is mandating effective safety management systems across all areas of the aviation industry.  In the past aviation safety management has been focussed on occurrence reporting- a lagging indicator. Today you need a management system approach that identifies hazards and mitigates risks to proactively manage safety performance and make more informed decisions – leading indicators. This management system approach needs to be proactive and systematic beyond the traditional compliance and audit-driven approach. It is therefore essential that your safety management system is adequately led, managed and assured to meet the performance levels you determine necessary for your safety management organisational protection.

SMS in Part M – significant new EASA Opinion now published.

Find out what the new regulations will mean for your organisation >>

Challenges you might be facing with your aviation safety management

Accountable Managers and Safety Managers face many tough challenges in today’s evolving safety performance orientated world. They have to be competent to profile their risks and operate Safety Management Systems capable of engaging people to collect and distil vast amounts of data into information which can be used to enable effective proactive risk-based decision-making.

But acceptable levels of risk to one organisation may not be the same for another, so how well does your organisation manage risk? How do you compare with your industry peers in terms of best practice? How confident are you that at all levels of your organisation, the board and staff know their top 10 risks? With a new emphasis on performance-based regulatory oversight, do you have the systems in place to predict where new risks might arise?

If you recognise any of the following difficulties above or below, please contact us  for an informal discussion.

  • Do you want Safety to really be the No.1 executive team issue?
  • Does your top team need help understanding aviation safety management?
  • Does your safety assurance process answer key safety performance questions?
  • Do you need to have a better understanding about where your organisation is on the Present, Suitable, Operating, Effective, Excellent (PSOEX) SMICG evaluation scale?
  • Do you need assistance for your executive team to be facilitated through a process to create an enabling safety vision and safety strategy?
  • Do you wish to create a safety strategy or have a ‘Plan-on-a-Page’ to help you ‘do’ safety more effectively?
  • Do you have a safety management system that is not delivering continuing safety performance improvement?
  • Do you need help with engaging your workforce to your management systems to operate an effective SMS?
  • Do you need to know what sort of safety culture you have, to measure its current effectiveness and maturity level?
  • Do you want a reporting system that is increasingly leading as opposed to lagging?
  • Do you want the ability to make high fidelity risk-based decisions across the whole organisation, particularly in the boardroom?
  • Do you want help to be able to forecast safety (harm) with ever-improving fidelity?

How we can help with your aviation safety management

We are leaders in safety management performance thinking. We are unique in supporting clients across strategic, management and technical safety management challenges. Our strong reputation for developing and implementing safety management improvement programmes across the industry is founded on our extensive experience of working in real-world situations with experts who are passionate about improving safety. We offer a very broad range of consulting services and training programmes that build the systems, enablers, competence and skills for effective Safety Management. All our services are tailored to suit your specific organisational requirements:

  • Safety competence programmes– to build skills, expertise and organisational competence
  • Safety strategy development– to provide direction and accountability for your organisation
  • Strategic leadership development programmes– to inspire leaders to lead safety
  • Safety engagement programmes– to win ‘hearts and minds’ to your safety agenda
  • Fatigue risk management programmes– to manage and mitigate high risks
  • Hazard and risk management programmes– to evolve proactive and predictive safety
  • Human factors programmes– to understand, manage and mitigate human risks
  • Error management programmes– to create a learning organisation
  • Reporting and investigation programmes– to secure confidence in organisational objectivity
  • Safety culture sustainment programmes– to build proactive safety climates
  • Human performance management programmes– to create the right safety behaviours
  • Safety assurance programmes– to design and manage quality and standards
  • Safety communication programmes– to motivationally connect people with safety
  • Regulatory Systems, Process, Resource & Competence Programmes – to become or remain compliant

Securing your boardroom to Safety Leadership – our workshops

Book a Safety Leadership facilitation workshop / briefing with Keven Baines

Successfully driving safety risk management capability into an organisation whose ultimate purpose is to run a profitable business requires more than a competent safety manager with a management system. A vital enabler for its success is leadership engagement and a top-down programme throughout the whole business.

Getting safety management right not only reaps significant safety benefits, it converts risk and error reduction into tangible business benefits and ultimately an improved bottom-line. Safety Managers alone cannot ‘make’ the organisation safe;  it is the role of the safety manager to build and maintain the management system that will enable all the management tiers to make risk-based decisions. Executive leadership teams who do not understand their safety leadership role – often become the unwitting blockers to achieving an effective safety management capability.

So, why is engaging senior management in safety matters still proving such a challenge for Safety Managers? From our experience the message needs communicating in business rather than technical language. Connection with executives and senior managers is a business challenge involving expression of the potential strategic business returns/ risks from effective and ineffective safety management.

How can Baines Simmons help you engage your Senior Leadership team?

We have built an enviable reputation for positively influencing executive and senior management teams to understand, invest and want an effective SMS. Keven and his team work alongside executive teams, providing safety leadership advice and coaching. We have proven success partnering with safety managers internally championing executive and senior team buy-in.

Through Keven’s guidance and coaching, Baines Simmons has helped a number of organisations to:

  • Gain buy-in for a more strategic approach to safety risk management
  • Improve executives’ risk management understanding and safety leadership capability
  • Enhance the safety risk management, regulatory, and aviation legislative competence of executive and management teams
  • Enable executives to more efficiently discharge their safety accountabilities
  • Improve their risk-based decision-making and reduce harms to the business
  • Create a boardroom pull approach to SMS
  • Secure investment and resources towards safety strategies and safety programmes
  • Gain a clear perspective of the link between the risk picture and profitability
  • Raise the profile of safety throughout the organisation
  • Secure ‘safety’ as a strategic boardroom agenda item

Powering-up your SMS through Organisational Safety Performance 

Following aviation industry’s early safety incident eras of Technical and Human causation, we now find the focus on Organisational causation. In this era of organisational safety challenges and complexity, we believe that Organisational Safety Performance is the driver to performance of the aviation safety management system. Our organisational safety performance model identifies five key enablers that need to be present and performing for an effective SMS. Managing and orchestrating the performance of these management systems and enablers is what we call Organisational Safety. It is at the core of every aviation organisation and is people and system-centric, focussed on the ‘human in the system’.

It is the management of an organisation’s system of safety defences, it ensures they are effectively established, maintained, and performed. Organisational safety performance is the ability to measure, achieve and continually improve safety through the effective integration of management systems that are powered by key people-centric supporting enablers, in order to meet stated safety performance objectives, targets and indicators.

Organisational Safety Performance comprises the people, processes, procedures, structures, systems and resources needed by an organisation to support a Performance-Based Environment (PBE) aimed at continuously improving aviation safety. Rather than just relying on the legacy of prescriptive regulatory compliance, the significant advantage of a performance-based approach is a change of focus to measuring levels of performance.

At the core of Organisational Safety Performance is a progressive framework of interacting and protection-based management systems: Regulatory Compliance, Compliance Monitoring, Human Factors & Error Management and Safety Risk Management.

Powering the management systems, and ensuring that they perform effectively, are five people-centric key enablers: ‘Active’ Leadership, ‘Proactive’ Culture, ‘Managed’ Competence, ‘Supportive’ Capability and ‘Robust’ Assurance.

Collectively, the combination of interacting management systems and supportive enablers offer  a powerful tool that can be used at any level within an organisation. It can drive safety strategies, plans and objectives from the board room to delegate initiatives and tasks to operational and technical levels.

Organisational Safety Performance can be measured and evaluated through the Baines Simmons SMARRT® tools.

Our unique diagnostic tools offer an independent an impartial evaluation of the performance levels of all the constituent elements of your Safety Management Systems and their enablers. These evaluations enable organisations to determine the gaps between current operating performance levels and strategically targeted positions. This information offers a strategic input into the organisation’s continuous improvement plan and enables the Board to hold the organisation’s management accountable for achieving the desired operating levels.

Benefits of Effective Organisational Safety

  1. It provides powerful layers of safety risk protection.
  2. It engenders a proactive safety culture where highly motivated, competent and professional people are aligned with both an organisation’s strategic and daily operational safety objectives and priorities.
  3. It improves organisational learning and develops a corporate knowledge-base through effective information management and continuous improvement across all areas of the organisation.
  4. It protects an organisation’s reputation, business profitability and assets.
  5. It reduces human error, inefficiency, incidents, injuries and rework.