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Five BCM Considerations for the Aviation Industry

2024-05-15

The aviation industry is highly complex, and often one of the first industries to feel the long-lasting effects of a crisis, as we saw with the pandemic. Disruptions, large or small, to operations can have significant consequences.

To ensure the smooth running of operations, aviation companies must have effective business continuity management, BCM plans, process and lines of communication in place. Here are five key BCM considerations for the aviation industry:

5 Business Continuity Management considerations for the Aviation Industry

1

Robust Emergency Response Protocols

Having well-defined emergency response protocols is essential for business continuity management. These protocols should address various scenarios, such as logistics failure, natural disasters or terrorist attacks. A strong focus on communication, coordination, and swift decision-making will help ensure the safety of passengers, employees, and infrastructure during emergencies.

The 2010 Eyjafjallajökull eruption is a classic example of how a natural disaster can devastate the aviation industry in a matter of hours. With the climate and weather patterns changing, natural disaster threats can come from multiple angles.

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2

Cybersecurity & Data Protection

All industries today rely heavily on digital systems for daily operations, making cybersecurity and data protection crucial components of business continuity management. Implementing multi-layered security measures, regular system updates, and having a complete understanding of all IT dependencies will help safeguard sensitive information lower cyberattack threats and help minimize disruptions to operations.

In 2023, airspace in the US was closed and all flights were grounded as an IT outage in the NOTAM system control. Could it have been avoided? After all, there was no backup in NOTAMS…

3

Collaboration & Training

A successful business continuity plan requires cross-functional collaboration between various departments, such as operations, maintenance, IT, and security. Regular training sessions and simulations can help ensure all employees understand their roles and responsibilities during a crisis, fostering a more resilient organization. In the aviation industry which is so reliant on third-party providers and partners, it can make a lot of sense to include key suppliers in training, as close collaboration with them will undoubtedly be required in an emergency.

The collaboration may not always be those most expected. During the pandemic when EU countries were looking to repatriate citizens, spaces on flights returning to Europe were being shared with the European External Action Services EEAS, who were sharing live reports with members throughout the world, to get people home. Training experts can develop scenario tests that can replicate lifelike situations that build teams’ morale and prepare them for the unexpected.

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4

Regulatory Compliance & Industry Standards

Compliance with industry regulations and standards is essential for business continuity management. However, restrictions don’t stand still – many of them are becoming stricter. And for a global industry such as aviation, where players often have operations in multiple regions, companies are subject to multiple regulations per vertical. Not only that, it’s likely that new regulations will be enforced as things like operational resilience trickle down from the financial sector into other industries.

5

Breaking down silos

Taking an integrated approach to organizational resilience and breaking down the silos between risk, continuity and crisis response teams and processes strengthens an organizations ability to identify threats, prevent and protect against them, and effectively respond and recover. Sharing data across the globe and across the organization in one centralized tool facilitates collaboration and ensures key players in every team are up to date and moving in the same direction at every stage of the resilience cycle.

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4C Strategies helps our clients in the Aviation industry digitalize resilience and manage incidents, crises and risk in one easy-to-use Exonaut tool. Book a free live demo or meet with one of our expert consultants to discuss your requirements.

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