While it’s true that a normal platypus is incapable of flight, the Odd Mammals at Plaidypus have quite a bit of experience under their belt when it comes to removing the data headaches from Charter Aviation MRO. We’re going to focus on Charter Operators in this article and the challenges they face with disparate MRO systems, pilot data and in many cases, heaps of paperwork. So, what does it take to make your aircraft PM and MRO running smoothly?
So, what is the big deal with this data? Well, let’s break it down:
- Pilots enter their flight logs in a variety of formats:
- Stand-alone mobile app
- Paper flight log
- In excel/pdf or other software on a laptop
- Charter operators tend to have equipment from a variety of manufacturers or OEMs. Each one has their own digital maintenance tools that don’t talk to one another (as referenced here in this 2020 Aerospace Tech Review Article).
- Further, pilot log data is aggregated and/or re-entered into these systems causing double-entry
Consequently, the two big challenges from this are that:
- Human error can cause cascading issues in your cycle and hour-based Maintenance
- This process places a lot of work and rework on your staff
Charter Aviation MRO data starts with your Pilots
Above all else, data starts with the pilot – it’s their log data that drives your MRO. In other words, pilot data allows each aircraft’s MRO routine to get the data it needs to run by itself. Initial data on an aircraft is set at the start, and after that, data sent from pilot logs for each aircraft helps automate the MRO activities.
When pilots enter their log data after each flight leg, and/or at the end of a trip, we want to make sure that the data is:
- Validated – there is no chance of, for example, entering a HOBBS IN value that is lower than your HOBBS OUT value.
- Simple – requires little to no typed or written information that can increase entry time or errors.
- Associated – the method of entry inherently understand which aircraft the data is for, AND which engines and/or props are on wing.
If we can validate and associate data in a simple way that pilots understand, we stand a chance to keep preventative maintenance running smoothly back at the hangar for your MRO and aircraft’s Preventative Maintenance activities.
Getting things talking
So, where do we start? We simply start with the software or manual systems that you are using today. That is the good news. In many cases, you don’t have to get rid of everything. You simply need to figure out what processes you’re trying to improve and identify the technology that will make them better.
If you’ve been using paper this whole time, you’re not alone. Chances are you’ve been cobbling your data together between physical and digital formats for awhile. We’ve seen first-hand the storage, double-entry and data error challenges that this introduces to your aviation operation.
Where do I go from here?
Eventually, your operation gets to a point where you need to evolve your process to increase efficiency. Here are three things you can do today to get this process started:
- Get your team involved in the process. Your team will quickly highlight inefficiencies. You can also check out the top of our 10-part series on selecting software for more.
- Next, document your process – or hire someone help you document it. Documentation not only allows you to see what your process looks like today, but where it is causing you the most trouble.
- Finally, take an inventory of any software you are using. Does your current software support Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)? If it does, you can keep your existing software. Otherwise, it is time to look at new software options.
Charter Aviation MRO and Plaidypus
Plaidypus works with both Charter Aviation as well as Commercial Aviation clients. More importantly, we are experts at developing processes and tying them to digital transformation. We help processes run better through software. Consequently, we’ve built software to manage Aviation LLP as well as making data flow from Pilot to MRO. We promise we don’t bite, so if you want to get in touch to discuss your challenges, let us know: