NBAA Convention News

IBAC Expands IS-BAO for Small Ops, Building Database

 - October 16, 2019, 6:20 PM

As the International Business Aviation Council (Booth N2816) honors participants for reaching key milestones in their participation with the International Standard for Business Aircraft Operations (IS-BAO) program, the Montreal-based organization is introducing a new option at NBAA-BACE to simplify IS-BAO registration for small operators.

Called FlightPlan Stage1, the program is an “an all-inclusive accelerated” pathway for operators with one aircraft and one base to gain Stage 1 IS-BAO in 90 to 180 days, said IBAC director general Kurt Edwards. Under the option, a credentialed program support affiliate will help streamline the pre-audit process for the operator.

Once that is accomplished, the operator will undergo a one-day independent audit and continue with post-registration validations every six months over a two-year period. FlightPlan Stage 1 will include access to the IBAC General Company Operations Manual (GCOM).

IBAC formed a partnership with Washington, D.C.-based operations manuals specialist AviationManuals (Booth N4102) to maintain the General Company Operations Manual in line with the latest IS-BAO update and provide simplified development methods to operators seeking IS-BAO registration.

“We are expanding our relationship with AviationManuals to add value to our IS-BAO operators, especially small flight departments,” said Bennet Walsh, IS-BAO program director. “This new alignment will improve access to our free GCOM that will be maintained to the latest IS-BAO revisions and be available in the operator’s regulatory framework.“

Under the partnership, AviationManuals also is offering registration support to organizations with limited resources at special rates.

“We look forward to supporting IBAC by improving and keeping its already robust GCOM up to date, thereby providing an even better free solution to IS-BAO members,” added AviationManuals CEO Mark Baier. “At the same time, we both recognize that developing and maintaining your own manuals, even when starting with the GCOM, may not be an effective and efficient option, particularly for smaller operators. We believe strongly that operators should always be looking to improve their operations and safety culture, and IS-BAO remains an excellent way to do so.”

As the FlightPlan Stage 1 program strives to bring in new operations, IBAC is honoring more than 50 operators and auditors who have reached five-year, 10-year, and 15-year anniversaries with either IS-BAO or the newer sibling program, the International Standard for Business Aircraft Handling (IS-BAH).

IS-BAO is a recommended code of best practices for aircraft operators based on International Civil Aviation Organization standards and with safety management systems (SMS) at the core of the program. Established in 2003, the program offers registration in various stages, with Stage 3 considered the highest level with more intensive audits. Overall, IS-BAO is designed to help flight departments achieve high levels of safety and professionalism. More than 700 organizations are registered.

Similarly, IS-BAH (International Standards for Business Aviation Handlin) is a global set of industry best practices, centered around SMS, that are tailored for aircraft handlers, such as FBOs. Launched in 2014, the IS-BAH program now has nearly 200 different ground handling services providers that have achieved at least Stage 1, Edwards said.

While it works to bring in operators at the Stage 1 level, IBAC also has teamed up with Baldwin Safety and Compliance (Booth N5819) on the development of a business aviation-specific safety database based on operators participating in the IS-BAO Progressive Stage 3 group. Progressive Stage 3 operators meet IS-BAO Stage 3 protocols, but will share de-identified (for privacy) SMS data with IBAC, and participate in IS-BAO audits progressively over the course of a year. Baldwin will support the de-identification, storage, and analysis of the information that will be accumulated in the database, the first of its kind for business aviation.