Helping Part 145 and 21 understand how to build in SMS requirements for business performance

Thursday, April 20, 2023

By Andy Llewellyn, Senior Consultant at Baines Simmons.

Having recently returned to Baines Simmons, it was with great pleasure that I recently delivered our 3-day TS02 Practical Application of Safety Management Systems course. What was striking was that the delegate professional demographic was predominantly MRO-based. Many of the attendees were from organisations subject to the recent changes to EASA Part-145 regulations (specifically the introduction of the management system requirements); whilst the remainder were attending in anticipation of a similar change to the UK CAA requirements. Although similar in specialisation, the organisations represented varied considerably in size and scale of operation but they all shared a common question: ‘What does this mean for our organisation?’ It was clear that there was an element of apprehension and uncertainty towards the changes ahead. It was also clear that on top of understanding what an SMS is and why it is needed, the delegates really wanted to understand the ‘how?’ We are also seeing very similar feedback from our Part-21 delegates.

Regulation (EU) 2021/1963 formally introduced SMS requirements to EASA Part-145 on 2 December 2022, with Regulation (EU) No 748/2012 (EASA Part-21) following on 7th March 2023. With the UK CAA widely expected to follow suit, there is a widespread demand to understand the implications of this significant change. Many Part-145 and Part-21 organisations are stand-alone and may not have benefitted from an existing operator or CAMO-led management system.  In such cases, the implementation of SMS can be seen as a daunting exercise and in the absence of a benchmark, it may not be clear what is required.

Uncertainty is pervasive and Baines Simmons stands ready to add the necessary clarity to help organisations understand and navigate a path to effective safety performance. We provide support through a full suite of training products and consultancy support which can be tailored to support your needs.

Clarity is achieved through knowledge. Our single day TS01 product provides a high-level perspective towards SMS and enables a clear understanding of management responsibilities. It goes beyond compliance to demonstrate that an effective management system can achieve real business improvement and allow the realisation of future opportunities by championing risk-based decision making.  More fundamentally, it allows business leaders to understand the need for a SMS, what it is (the component elements) and plants the seed of Active Safety Leadership.

The TS02 product goes deeper and not only fully answers the ‘What and Why’ in terms of SMS but enables delegates to understand fully ‘How?’ Distilling the intent behind the ICAO Annex 19 SARPs and associated national regulatory requirements, the 3-day course allows delegates holding key safety management or safety management-facing roles to fully understand how to practically apply the requirements within the context of their own operation. The course further allows delegates to understand the business benefits of SMS to support building a compelling case to develop a high-performing, value-adding management system.

Going beyond the training room, Baines Simmons offers clients bespoke consultancy solutions to help them along their SMS implementation journey.  At the outset we can provide a tailored Management System Diagnostic to help organisations understand their Point A and support the development of a SMS Implementation Plan. It is understood that the start of the SMS journey is often resource intensive and our consultancy services compliment our clients’ in house capability through coaching and senior leadership engagement. This ensures that the direction is clear and a handrail provided through the fragile early stages of implementation.

The SMS requirements for Part-145 and Part-21 represent a significant change for in scope organisations to manage. Uncertainty is intrinsically linked to change but the implementation of SMS should not be viewed with apprehension. It should be seen as an opportunity to build an effective management system to power-up business performance.

For more information on how you can enable your organisation to perform safety better, get in touch with the Baines Simmons team.