You have a headache. Being a leader in one of the most standardized and highly regulated industries with scores of compliance guidelines, can give anyone a headache. Now add in the large employee base, from ground root to upper management, all of whom have to go through hours of training to stay compliant. You have the prefect formula to turn your headache into a migraine.
This is probably why leaders in Aviation across the globe have enthusiastically moved to Learning Management Systems that answer the multi-variate requirements specific to the industry, from customer experience, to safety and regulatory requirements.
To identify the need-to-have features in an Aviation specific LMS we did some research on the pain points that cause the headache, and then worked backwards to create the wish list of features.
Integration with Existing Rostering System
You have a set number of training resources in the form of certified trainers, venues, and equipment. You also have an employee base which has very complicated, shift-based duty hours. Automated tracking of trainer schedules for availability, mapping with venue availability and employee batches, is the need of the hour. The idea is to make the resource allocation for training delivery seamless and error-free. Administrative tasks do eat into the productive time of trainers, especially while conducting the long duration, multi-stage training programs. With the right integration and reporting options, most administrative tasks can be automated within the LMS used by trainers, thereby making it a must-have feature in an aviation specific LMS.
Certification Management and Renewals
Each department in aviation is spread across geographies, which require their own set of certifications, and regulatory training, with some certifications that must be renewed at regular intervals for compliance. Therefore, the right LMS must be able to track employee roles, departments, required trainings, certifications, and their expiry. For the LMS to be effective, it should be able then to forecast requirement of training hours in the future months as well as send alerts to employees and their supervisors when the renewal is due. It should automatically assign training programs to users and should also be able to track the adherence. Last but not the least, it should have the option of “Read and Sign” for trainees, which is an absolute requirement for compliance audits.
Attendance and Assessment Protocols
It is a tribute to human nature how hard people work to find the loopholes. It is an even bigger tribute to technology that aims to be unbeatable at adherence checks and assessment protocols. To ensure the right person attends the training and then appears for the assessment, your LMS needs to have personally identifiable features, maybe like a face recognition tool. If the feature then extends to intermittent captures of the person attending the training or appearing for an assessment, you have a fool-proof system.
Statutory Requirement: Change Management & Tracking
Since the aviation authorities watch the aviation space with a hawk-eye, one of their requirements is to know every time something changes from the last set of information shared with them. They ultimately hold the leadership of an organization accountable if they are not able to provide audit trails. So, the final cherry on the icing is to have an LMS that tracks changes made to everything, from curriculum, training rosters of attendees, trainers, and even the venue. This helps the leaders keep an eye on things and when the auditor arrives, or demands a report, it can be generated and shared without a sweat.
There are many other aspects, requirements, and challenges to deal with, in aviation. However, having the right LMS with all the required features, would go a long way in terms of easing the headache and allowing to focus on other critical areas.