IS-BAO Stage 3 Cultural Attributes

The aim of a Stage Three evaluation is to confirm that:

  1. SMS is sustained and supported by an on-going improvement process,
  2. A positive safety culture is sustained, and
  3. Safety management activities are fully integrated into the operator’s business.

A Stage Three operator is expected to have the following characteristics:

  1. Widespread employee commitment to and involvement with improving safety performance, including visible leadership by top management;
  2. A sustained desire for good safety performance as a goal in itself, not just as an issue of regulatory compliance;
  3. Consistently, with interest, seeks the causes of deficiencies, rather than the allocation of blame;
  4. Effective communication of safety information within and outside the organization, including safety performance trends;
  5. A deeply held commitment to the benefits of continuous evaluation and improvement;
  6. Managerial awareness of the issues that adversely impact the operator’s safety culture;
  7. Safety goals that are measured and proactively managed;
  8. Adequate allocation of financial and other resources for safety management;
  9. Initiatives to learn from the safety performance of external organizations; and
  10. Safety performance measures that include those of effectiveness of activities of processes, rather than just the results of these activities.

The on-going improvement process should include regular evaluation of safety management activities in relation to stated SMS objectives plus the evaluation of the effectiveness of risk controls. It also should include a formal process to identify the causes of sub-standard performance of the SMS, determine the implications of sub-standard performance of the SMS in operations, and eliminate or mitigate such causes.

For Stage Three evaluations, auditors conduct an in-depth evaluation of effectiveness utilizing the detailed protocols along with the following performance indicator examples. The possible methods by which the information can be obtained are provided in brackets with the following abbreviations employed: doc. – manuals, formal documents, procedures, files, etc; int. – interviews with managers, staff or stakeholders; obs. – on-site or inflight observations; exp. – the experience of the auditor.

Stage 3 Cultural Attributes

Safety Policy and Objectives

  1. Are comments on the efficacy of the safety policy and related policies actively solicited from all stakeholders, managers and staff? (doc., int., obs., exp.)
  2. Are the policy/policies periodically and thoroughly reviewed and when appropriate, revised? (doc., int., obs., exp.)
  3. Is top management fully aware of the human and organizational factors that endanger the operation and do they continuously make decisions mindful of those factors? (doc., int.,obs., exp.)
  4. Does management drive the SMS process and vigorously seek excellence? (int.)
  5. Are responsibilities for safety and contributing to the SMS effectiveness fully embedded throughout all levels of the organization? (doc., int.)
  6. Do the appraisals of personnel at all levels include related SMS targets (activities and results) and is exemplary behaviour rewarded? (doc., int.)
  7. Are safety management activities being continually monitored, evaluated and improved when opportunities are identified? (doc., int.)
  8. Have managers and staff clearly demonstrated that they are capable of performing their roles to proactively manage safety? (obs., exp.
  9. Is there evidence of the documentation evolving as the other elements of the SMS matured? (doc., int.)

Safety Risk Management

  1. Are the policies and procedures to mitigate safety-risks periodically reviewed for applicability and effectiveness and modified when found wanting. (int., obs., doc.)
  2. Does the mitigation account for predictable human, operational and organizational limitations? (int., obs., exp.)
  3. Are risk assessment and management fully integrated into all operations and maintenance activities? (int., obs., doc.)
  4. Is the information indicating the need to change respected and valued? (doc., int., obs.)
  5. Are long and short-term plans to improve safety performance driven by multi-level analyses of the safety-risk management database and integrated with business planning. (int., obs., doc.)
  6. Is there solid evidence that managers and staff are fully engage in and committed to, enhancing safety performance? (int., obs., doc., exp.)
  7. Is there consistent feedback that has been effective in ensuring the participation of managers and employees? (doc. int., obs.)
  8. Is the information used not only to enhance day-to-day safety, but also to improve long-term safety management? (doc., int.)
  9. Are the results of safety management activities evident in the operations manual and its amendments? (obs., doc., int.)
  10. Are there effective processes to ensure that any amendments to the Operations Manual that result from safety management activities are made in a timely manner? (obs., doc.,int.)
  11. Are employees highly motivated to report occurrences and does the environment exist where they are fully prepared to make such reports when it involves admitting that they made mistakes? (int.)
  12. Are occurrences analyzed and the lessons learned integrated into the appropriate programs and procedures? (doc., int.)

Safety Assurance

  1. Is the effectiveness of safety management activities periodically evaluated and modified to improve the organization’s safety performance. (doc., int.)
  2. Is there effective use of tools such as internal safety surveys? (doc., int.)
  3. Is there an effective ongoing program to evaluate safety performance? (doc., int., obs.,exp.)
  4. Is the information obtained used to enhance appropriate programs and procedures? (doc., int., obs., exp.)

Safety Promotion

  1. Is there an established effective process to ensure that the results of SMS activities are fully integrated into the appropriate training programs? (int., doc.)
  2. Are employees highly motivated to report apparent safety deficiencies and fully confident that there will not be retribution? (int.)
  3. Are there well established processes to expeditiously evaluate safety information and integrate it into safety management activities? (doc., int. obs., exp)