Walter Kraujalis is president of AeronomX LLC, an aviation consulting firm providing advice in... Read More
Flight Dept Mgmt - July 14 - 5 steps to communicate
Certification basics for Business Aviation managers
The aviation professional must understand and be able to communicate the value of Business Aviation by interacting with key people about aviation capabilities that help the company achieve its goals. The focus of senior management is upon the company’s business goals, and they may not be aware of the possibilities that private aviation offers.
Step 1 – Awareness
Be aware of and understand Business Aviation capabilities. According to the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) ‘No Plane No Gain’ advocacy program, private air travel provides:
• Flexibility in schedule. In today’s business environment, companies need to be nimble and move quickly.
• Increased employee productivity and security. Traveling aboard business aircraft provides space and privacy to meet, plan and work enroute. Employees can discuss proprietary information in a secure environment without fear of eavesdropping, industrial espionage or physical threat.
• Contact with colleagues en-route. Telephone and internet capabilities onboard business aircraft are far superior and more secure than what is typically available on airliners.
• Access to destinations with little or no airline service. Private aviation can access 5,000 airports in the United States compared to 500 airports with Airline service.
• Schedule predictability. More than three percent of all Scheduled Airline flights are cancelled, and twenty-five percent are delayed. Business Aviation has a better than 95 percent probability of meeting its schedule.
• Less time required to reach multiple destinations. In one day a company executive can go to several destinations that would take two or three days to do by Airline.
• Support of company employees. Sales teams can quickly meet prospects or customers face-to-face. An engineering teams can be on the scene quickly to resolve a problem.
• Greater return to shareholders. Studies show that businesses with their own air transportation solution provide better returns to shareholders within their industry.
Step 2 – Analyze
Analyze Business Aviation benefits that will improve the way your company currently operates. Are there areas within the company that can take advantage of the capabilities business aircraft provide? Are there company divisions or departments that could excel with the feature of getting to multiple destinations in one day or just a few days, at their own pace and schedule?
Are there remote market areas that are under-serviced because they are difficult to reach? List all the mission possibilities. With each new mission possibility, determine the destinations and frequency of flights using a business aircraft. This analysis provides you with an estimated number of annual flight hours to accomplish each mission. There are several delivery systems available for accessing private air travel. These include air charter, jet card programs, fractional aircraft ownership, or whole aircraft ownership. Each platform has its strengths in service and unique costs. Take each of the new possible missions identified and determine the ability of each platform to accomplish the mission. Tally the estimated annual costs for each.
Step 3 – Apply
Determine how this mission analysis applies to your company. For each new mission possibility identified, determine the costs associated with the current travel mode, such as the Scheduled Airlines, that your company employs. Be sure to include the cost of the extra time it takes each employee to travel by Airline. If a new mission opportunity you identified is not currently being accomplished, determine the cost of the lost opportunity (i.e. the loss of possible increased sales and profit).
Take these cost numbers and compare them to the cost and profit possibilities associated with each new mission using Business Aviation. Be sure to consider the value derived from time saved. You may be pleasantly surprised with what you see. Very often the Business Aviation option can be conducted at less cost or will provide a better profit margin.
Step 4 – Advocate
Communicate to those within your company who are responsible for overseeing profitability—they need to know the benefits of Business Aviation. Present your analysis in a manner and time aligned with the characteristics of the intended audience. Depending upon who will be receiving your message, a formal presentation with PowerPoint slides might be necessary or a casual conversation might be more effective.
Consider how the information should be presented within the corporate structure. Solicit advice from your immediate supervisor. Depending upon the company culture, it may be advantageous to win the CFO or department head over to your side early, or perhaps go to top management first. Keep your focus on the additional profits and cost savings made possible via Business Aviation. Properly managed, a company aircraft is a tool that increases mobility and personnel efficiency.
Step 5 – Again…
Complete a Business Aviation analysis every year. Your study should not be a one-time occurrence. Companies change, as do their business needs. Management changes. Market areas change. What is effective today may not be appropriate for tomorrow.