Enhancing your organisation’s SMS

One of the principal aims of Future Sky Safety was to help aviation organisations protect themselves from organisational contributions to accidents, whether these were linked to poor safety culture, poor decision-making at senior levels, failure to react quickly enough to evolving weak signals at the operational interface, or an inability to react in a sufficiently agile way during a pan-European crisis. Each of these aspects has been dealt with individually elsewhere on this website. The purpose of this section, however, is to help organisations see how such approaches can be integrated into existing Safety Management Systems. If this can be done, then it gives such organisations an organisational risk management capability, enhancing the SMS.

Future Sky Safety contrasted the toolset made available to protect against organisational risks with a number of SMS frameworks used in aviation, including EASA, CANSO, ICAO and Shell’s approach for air operations, and determined where each tool would ‘fit’ in SMS terms. This means that any aviation organisation can decide which tool to use, or indeed to adopt the entire toolset, and then embed them into its SMS. Guidance is available in the attached deliverable for this work package of Future Sky Safety.

The components of an SMS are Safety Policy and Objectives, Safety Risk Management, Safety Assurance, and Safety Promotion (ICAO Annex 19). Within these components various topics are addressed that constitute good safety management practices. For many of these topics Future Sky Safety developed new approaches that organisations can effectively use to strengthen their safety management. The SMS wheel shows the impact of the research on the topics, where darker colours mean more important contributions. Details can be found in the guidance material.