The airline industry has yet to define a meaningful method for determining organizational fitness through internal analysis.
Prior to deregulation, Airline Safety Departments and Programs were found in nearly every major and regional carrier. Today there are relatively few safety departments in comparison to pre deregulation. In addition, contemporary safety departments do not enjoy the same stature within the airlines; where department heads were formerly vice presidents, they are now directors or managers.
Currently, the FAA is encouraging the industry to implement “Self Audit” programs based primarily on regulatory adherence. However, there is still no requirement or emphasis for a “Safety Department”. Additionally, there is no incentive for operators to establish a dynamic loss control or risk management program.
This paper addresses the use of “Risk Management” techniques as an adjunct to any internal audit and attempts to show that the focus should not only be on regulatory adherence and safety, but profitability as well.