Aircraft Performance: Management Perspective
Improving the performance of aircraft operations is not simply a technical issue; it is also a management issue that requires insight into how to deploy the organization's human resources in an effective fashion. "Physically demanding tasks, variable weather phenomena, night shifts and poor lighting, time pressure, staff shortages, the unavailability of tooling and the interface with pieces of equipment that are increasingly technologically sophisticated are only some of the typical hassles that characterize the typical working environment" (Pierobon 2014). The FAA suggests that the process of Human Factors management (HF) is a valuable way to improve safety and reduce the risk of avoidable errors due to a lack of knowledge and fatigue. "Training can promote awareness and affect attitude thereby reducing costs associated to human performance issues" (Pierobon 2014). Just like equipment needs a periodic tune-up, so does the safety-related policies of workers and other components of their technical capabilities.
Regular training initiatives also promotes a more safety-focused workplace culture. It shows that managers care and are mindful of the need for best practices related...
Technology within the industry is constantly changing and even the most experienced worker's skill set needs refinement and updating. A variety of techniques can be used for workplace monitoring. Observations of workers in test situations enables management to anticipate errors and improve standardized operating procedures that can rectify them. "Initial and recurrent training on new regulations, procedures and equipment are opportunities to reinforce awareness of the HF issues that affect job performance" and "HF training is essential to understanding the contributing factors to events" (Pierobon 2014). No matter how sophisticated the technology may be, ultimately the individuals using it must be well-trained enough to do so effectively. Although periodic training and retraining is costly from a managerial perspective in terms of time and money, so are the risks of unsafe practices. Safety programs contain costs by promoting best practices as well as result in safer travel for both employees and passengers. Typical topics include communication skills, managing fatigue, "situational awareness," time and stress management, and managing pressure from peers (Pierobon 2014).
Selecting the right type of aircraft for the job is also a clearly important component of safety management. The type of mission which needs to be performed must be determined and correctly matched with the technology, along with the workers assigned to the craft. Affordability and staff competence will affect choice. For example, "you may want to perform missions such as rescue SWAT, and airborne use of force, but these missions generally require aircraft with higher performance…
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