With flight operations and ground operations manuals becoming much more complex and subject to constant revision, they need to be managed and maintained in an efficient and effective way.
Additionally, to ensure compliance, flight operations are subject to a number of regulatory and internal audits, including EASA and IOSA - where airlines are required to complete and document certain audit questions.
This kind of process can take its toll on resources - for instance, for one IOSA audit, it might require three or more employees to dedicate a number of weeks solely on managing and editing documents for this audit. Not only might this cause a staff shortage in other areas of the organisation, but it can impact utility as well as potentially halting operations if deadlines are missed.
However, with the right document management processes, you could actually build a more collaborative way of working with flight operations. Read the rest of the article to learn how.
Document management can optimise your flight operations
Good document management offers airlines the ability to customise, revise and publish documents as well as allowing contribution from third-party sources. As such, optimising your document management and the process you use can, therefore, improve and optimise your flight operations in their day-to-day activities and even free them from manual tasks. Instead, these tasks can become more automated - saving time and resources.
Benefits of document management collaboration
Document management provides a multitude of benefits to the whole organisation, however we’ve described the top four benefits that it can have for flight operations:
1. Consistency of Information Distributed
Instant access functionality and manual distribution protocols mean that pilots, cabin crew and other operational personnel will always have the most up-to-date manual that, if developed in a searchable format, provides both for easy search, filtering and access.
Both the format and the layout for all manuals is consistent and this ensures that movement from one manual to the next doesn’t hinder efficiency.
2. Sharing Best Practice
Great document management ensures that best practice is shared amongst the entire team quickly and easily. Whilst regulatory or OEM changes are often required to manuals, good document management means that adopted tips and performance advice can be shared amongst the team so that everyone can benefit.
3. Reducing Resource Pressure
The update and distribution of manuals is on the surface an easy operation to order yet, in reality, many airline organisations often do not have an efficient nor ordered document management system in place. It is cumbersome, reliant upon a number of key individuals and takes up expensive time of Chief Pilots and Technical Pilots in order to ensure manuals are compliant.
Good document management understands all of the resources required to support compliance in document management by reviewing and addressing the real requirements from all those in the document management chain. For instance, it isn’t cost effective for a Technical Pilot to be editing a document when expert editors should be on hand to review the notes and information suggested. Review and sign off procedures would follow an ordered sequence thereafter.
4. Increasing Flight Operations Productivity
This is a key area for flight operations and one that the post holder – Director of Fight Operations – is accountable for. Those that recognise the enterprise-wide importance of great document management focus upon developing the most efficient service available as this has the knock-on effect of reducing document update turnaround. It also supports audit and regulatory requirements and provides a backbone to assist other flight operations activities, in particular, keeping planes operational and in service.
Document management is certainly an important aspect of airline operations, not just because best practice processes can lend itself to ensuring a smoother back-office, but also because it has a significantly positive effect in supporting flight operations.
Document management, when done right, has the ability to provide flight operations (i.e. flight and ground crew) with the means that can help tackle challenges and opens the door to a more intelligent age of information sharing. This is particularly helpful in an environment that is complex and allows employees to learn how to use the information being shared to benefit of all.
Document management is also the start of transforming your airline organisation into one that is utilising the power of digital working - creating more efficient operations throughout the orgnisation as a result.
Want to learn more about how to make your airline more efficient? Download our free guide on supporting efficient airline operations below.