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Aircrew Standard Operating Procedures, Gospel or Guidance?

Biala, Chakshu LU (2019) FLMU05 20172
Division of Risk Management and Societal Safety
Abstract
Operators of complex systems (e.g. modern passenger Commercial Aircrafts) often take decisions
in unique situations, which develop rapidly in everyday work. For most situations, they have
detailed company policies and procedures at their disposal to help them deal with these events.
But do these procedures and policies work exactly as written all the time? And does experience
level and type of organization influence a pilot’s reliance on these procedures?
The author tries to find answers to these questions with an anonymous online survey sent out to
Indian Airline Pilots. Respondents are asked to decide if they wish to apply a given company
policy in an unusual yet plausible event given to them. Four hundred and seven Indian pilots
... (More)
Operators of complex systems (e.g. modern passenger Commercial Aircrafts) often take decisions
in unique situations, which develop rapidly in everyday work. For most situations, they have
detailed company policies and procedures at their disposal to help them deal with these events.
But do these procedures and policies work exactly as written all the time? And does experience
level and type of organization influence a pilot’s reliance on these procedures?
The author tries to find answers to these questions with an anonymous online survey sent out to
Indian Airline Pilots. Respondents are asked to decide if they wish to apply a given company
policy in an unusual yet plausible event given to them. Four hundred and seven Indian pilots
responded to the author’s survey, representing seven percent of the total pilots employed by Indian
Air Carriers in 2017, making this survey, the largest Indian Pilot study of its kind covering all
major Indian airline companies.
The study also revealed that less experienced pilots from low cost airlines were more inclined to
strictly follow company Standard Operating Procedure, while experienced pilots (Above 5000
Hours Experience) from legacy airlines were more willing to decide against following company
iv
procedure in this particular scenario. This suggests that SOP culture of an airline and aviation
experience both have an affect on a pilot’s perception on SOP compliance.
Also it was found that majority of the pilots surveyed (Fifty Four percent) either agreed or strongly
agreed to the fact that they have to adapt SOPs to meet efficiency targets on an everyday basis.
This reveals a gap between ‘work as imagined’ and ‘work as actually done’ (Dekker 2006b: 86). (Less)
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author
Biala, Chakshu LU
supervisor
organization
course
FLMU05 20172
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
Standard Operating Procedures, Rules, Aviation Safety, FLMU05
language
English
id
8973637
date added to LUP
2019-03-28 14:05:29
date last changed
2019-03-28 14:05:29
@misc{8973637,
  abstract     = {Operators of complex systems (e.g. modern passenger Commercial Aircrafts) often take decisions
in unique situations, which develop rapidly in everyday work. For most situations, they have
detailed company policies and procedures at their disposal to help them deal with these events.
But do these procedures and policies work exactly as written all the time? And does experience
level and type of organization influence a pilot’s reliance on these procedures?
The author tries to find answers to these questions with an anonymous online survey sent out to
Indian Airline Pilots. Respondents are asked to decide if they wish to apply a given company
policy in an unusual yet plausible event given to them. Four hundred and seven Indian pilots
responded to the author’s survey, representing seven percent of the total pilots employed by Indian
Air Carriers in 2017, making this survey, the largest Indian Pilot study of its kind covering all
major Indian airline companies.
The study also revealed that less experienced pilots from low cost airlines were more inclined to
strictly follow company Standard Operating Procedure, while experienced pilots (Above 5000
Hours Experience) from legacy airlines were more willing to decide against following company
iv
procedure in this particular scenario. This suggests that SOP culture of an airline and aviation
experience both have an affect on a pilot’s perception on SOP compliance.
Also it was found that majority of the pilots surveyed (Fifty Four percent) either agreed or strongly
agreed to the fact that they have to adapt SOPs to meet efficiency targets on an everyday basis.
This reveals a gap between ‘work as imagined’ and ‘work as actually done’ (Dekker 2006b: 86).},
  author       = {Biala, Chakshu},
  keyword      = {Standard Operating Procedures,Rules,Aviation Safety,FLMU05},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Aircrew Standard Operating Procedures, Gospel or Guidance?},
  year         = {2019},
}