Airport Business - 37

FBO MATTERS
decision, likely to affect the organization for many years to
come. Switching a SDIMS in the future will not be convenient
or inexpensive, so there is a tendency to stick with the original
decision, even as the organization and its SMS evolve - a fact
well-understood by the vendors themselves. Hence, a thorough
acknowledgement of the desired features, both in the present
and for anticipated future needs of the organization, becomes
an essential prerequisite to selecting the appropriate vendor.
Here are three questions to ask before selecting a SDIMS:
1. Do I need a data repository only or an informationproviding product?
2. Does my SDIMS need to include other modules as well
(training, inspections, etc.)?
3. Is our safety management system ready to start receiving
output from the SDIMS?
Do I need a data repository only, or an information-providing
product?
The first question a potential buyer should ask is whether
they need a data repository, from which to download reports
for analysis, or an information-providing product. So, what's
the difference? It is as fundamental as the terms "data" and
"information" themselves.
The term "data" is derived from the Latin noun for
"something given." Use of the term indicates that there is
objectivity and a lack of controversy as to the nature of the fact.
The term "information" on the other hand derives not from a
noun but from the Latin verb "informare," meaning "to shape
mentally" or "to form an idea or conception of." There is action
implied in the word, unlike the passive term "data," which
merely exists, while information actively lives by shaping ideas
and impacting real-world decisions. This goes a step beyond the
data repository because it provides extra intelligence regarding
the data. This is best for organizations with large amounts of
data that is difficult to analyze oneself.
Back to SDIMS - some organizations may only need a
reliable repository of data, from which they will download
for internal analysis from time-to-time. Other organizations
might expect a SDIMS to provide automated and actionable
information. This, in my opinion, is why the first decision
an organization needs to make when considering a potential
purchase of an SDIMS is to understand whether it needs data or
information out of its SDIMS. Too often, a "Cadillac" model is
installed but is only actually used to record injuries and incidents,
but none of the analytical modules are utilized yet are being
paid for anyway. Worse yet, online training modules, chemical
management systems and other add-ons are included but not
used. In these cases, the safety program costs are unwittingly
undermining the financial health of the organization.
Does my SDIMS need to include other modules as well
(training, inspections, etc.)?
While it may be tempting to reduce the number of vendors
and systems, avoid purchasing additional modules that your
SDIMS may offer unless there is a real business need or
opportunity. For example, if a reporting tool that also happens to
offer a Learning Management System (LMS)...but you already
have an LMS...feel free to pass on the opportunity. Simplicity
does not necessarily mean having one vendor or product for
everything.

Is our safety management system ready to start receiving output
from the SDIMS?
It is important to be prepared to use the data (i.e., to convert
it into useful information) when a system element is introduced.
For example, an employee safety reporting system needs to
result in some kind of response from the organization - not just
of the safety concern but also the direct feedback loop to the
originator of the concern. A safety management system should
view an increase in the number of safety reports as a positive
indicator of the safety culture of that organization. A less mature
safety culture might see the increase of safety concerns as an
unwelcome intrusion on its normal operations. Other potential
outputs such as upcoming compliance requirements, training
needs or risk level reports need to be received and actioned
by actual individuals within the organization. Otherwise, the
investment of money and time in acquiring and building the
SDIMS is wasted.
The decision to purchase SDIMS is a consequential one but
it pales in comparison to the commitment and effort required
to implement the overall SMS, of which the software is but
one element. Keep this in perspective and avoid the temptation
to use the selection of a SDIMS as a substitute for the more
difficult - but also more rewarding - effort in developing and
evolving your SMS. 

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Airport Business

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Airport Business

Inside the Fence
Industry Update
RS&H Plans King County Airport for Boeing 777x Arrival
Time to Reorganize – Why U.S. Airports Need to Adapt their Organizations to Meet Industry Changes
Avoid a Battered Display: Indoor and Outdoor Digital Signage Enclosure Protect from Theft, Storms and More
Pick Your Seat
What We Need to Know About Electric Hand Drying
Changing Camera Technology Boosts Airport Security
The Right Light
Self-Service Takes Hold in the Future of Airport Concessions
What is the difference Between an SMS and an SMS?
Washington Watch
Ready for Takeoff: Airports Becoming the New Lifestyle Hubs
Product Focus
Airport Business - 1
Airport Business - 2
Airport Business - 3
Airport Business - 4
Airport Business - 5
Airport Business - Inside the Fence
Airport Business - 7
Airport Business - Industry Update
Airport Business - 9
Airport Business - RS&H Plans King County Airport for Boeing 777x Arrival
Airport Business - 11
Airport Business - Time to Reorganize – Why U.S. Airports Need to Adapt their Organizations to Meet Industry Changes
Airport Business - 13
Airport Business - Avoid a Battered Display: Indoor and Outdoor Digital Signage Enclosure Protect from Theft, Storms and More
Airport Business - 15
Airport Business - 16
Airport Business - 17
Airport Business - Pick Your Seat
Airport Business - 19
Airport Business - 20
Airport Business - 21
Airport Business - What We Need to Know About Electric Hand Drying
Airport Business - 23
Airport Business - Changing Camera Technology Boosts Airport Security
Airport Business - 25
Airport Business - 26
Airport Business - 27
Airport Business - The Right Light
Airport Business - 29
Airport Business - 30
Airport Business - 31
Airport Business - Self-Service Takes Hold in the Future of Airport Concessions
Airport Business - 33
Airport Business - 34
Airport Business - 35
Airport Business - What is the difference Between an SMS and an SMS?
Airport Business - 37
Airport Business - Washington Watch
Airport Business - Ready for Takeoff: Airports Becoming the New Lifestyle Hubs
Airport Business - Product Focus
Airport Business - 41
Airport Business - 42
Airport Business - 43
Airport Business - 44
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