What Is a Virtual Safety Office?

There are many smaller aviation service providers without the infrastructure or expertise to efficiently manage their own SMS. These operators are not SMS subject-matter experts and need help! Their SMS may (or may not) be required, but the need exists, nonetheless. Examples of these operators include small:

  • Corporate flight departments (less than 40 employees);
  • Airports;
  • Aviation Maintenance Organizations (AMOs or MROs);
  • Drone operators;
  • Agricultural operations;
  • Sightseeing tour operators; and
  • FBOs.

A Virtual Safety Office (VSO) would benefit these operators by improving their safety cultures and economically providing SMS subject matter expertise.

There are many SMS activities that these operators may need assistance with, such as:

  • Creating or updating their SMS manuals;
  • Collecting safety event data;
  • Conducting risk analysis;
  • Documenting risk management activities;
  • Performing safety promotion activities; and
  • Managing standard SMS components.

Benefits of Virtual Safety Office (VSO)

Your VSO can provide these operators the same capability as larger organizations by using an SMS Internet portal operated by a Safety Analyst Mentor (SAM). For legal purposes, we avoid the use of terms like "virtual safety manager" or any title using "manager" as the word "manager" implies a level of control for administering all or part of the company. To avoid potential legal liability, we do not want to implicitly or explicitly claim to possess company authority.

Your VSO will enable smaller operators to capitalize on the features and capabilities of a robust SMS Web application for a very low monthly subscription fee. A dedicated, trained Safety Analyst Mentor (SAM) becomes part of your VSO subscription and performs the following functions:

  • SMS Application administration
  • Hazard /Safety event identification, analysis, tracking and assignment
  • Trend analysis
  • Assist with risk analysis
  • Create reports
  • Client coaching, training and mentoring
  • Track and manage action item assignments
  • Perform safety promotion activities (surveys and newsletters)
  • Update stored manuals, documents, policies and procedures as directed by client

SMS Consultant Benefits from Providing a VSO

SMS consultants area already proving limited services to their clients, such as:

  • SMS training;
  • SMS manual writing;
  • SMS implementation support;
  • SMS auditing; and
  • SMS audit preparation or coaching.

By providing operators with a complete offering in a VSO, you are positioning yourself to offer even more services. Furthermore, you are better positioned to determine client needs and provide services that would better benefit your clients.

Using SMS Pro for Your Virtual Safety Office (VSO)

Objective: Provide a portal to a virtual safety manager that can manage the SMS for multiple clients.

Assumptions for VSO Management

  • No more than 20 clients (operators) per portal.
  • Each client is a division in SMS Pro with < 40 employees
  • Users can see only issues in their division
  • SAM is the SMS Pro point of contact for support

Users have little interaction in SMS Pro except to:

  • Submit hazard reports (reported issues);
  • Read & sign off on safety messages;
  • Read safety newsletters; and
  • Perform initial/recurrent SMS training.

Offered Modules and Permissions

VSO Costs to Operators

For each client, SMS Pro costs are:

  • $1,000 initial setup; and
  • $1,200 annual subscription ($100 monthly).
What will you charge your clients for your VSO service? That is between you and your clients.


Frequently Asked Questions about VSO

Q: Can an operator move to their own portal at any time?

A: Yes. Your client can contact SMS Pro to purchase their own portal. There will be a $1,000 one-time setup and data migration fee. Their minimum monthly costs will be $299.

Start Your Own Virtual Safety Office

Free Download Resources Supporting New Aviation SMS

These selected resources are invaluable in assisting your team to quickly and efficiently implement a new aviation safety management system.

These resources are applicable to:

  • Airlines
  • Airports
  • Aviation Maintenance Organizations
  • ANSP
  • FBOs
  • Flight Schools
  • Smaller flight operations

Download Safety Policy

Duties & Responsibilities of Key Safety Personnel

Free Download Template for Safety Accountabilities

Org Chart

How to Create an Org Chart for Aviation Safety Management Systems

Gap Analysis Checklists

Download Free Gap Analysis Resources