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Command Failure Rates

Fragrant Harbour A forum for the large number of pilots (expats and locals) based with the various airlines in Hong Kong. Air Traffic Controllers are also warmly welcomed into the forum.

Command Failure Rates

Old 30th Jun 2007, 11:47
  #81 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Honkers
Posts: 383
Buzz,

I don't have all the answers just a bit of sensible thinking.

I'll keep it short as it's no longer raining and I am going out for a beer.


Firstly, do away with the rank of SO, no point having a guy sat in the back seat for 3 or more years. Currency won't be a problem for the increased numbers on the Airbus or 777 fleets, maybe a bit on the 400. Cadets can go to Dragon air and fly the 320 for a few years as they already do over there. Everyone can come in as a JFO. I believe the company are looking into this and are trying to get rid of the SO rank in the future, but I bet the beancounters are fighting that one.

I feel the training system should have an external audit and then a complete overhaul. The system of ERAS or the new reporting system should be thrown in the bin. The grading system with the 1 to 5 shouldn't be used as it opens up the chances of inconsistency between different checkers etc, a simple PASS/FAIL should be used, therefore taking out the chances of Joe Bloggs not getting through because of a 2 or a 3 he got in 1965.

Also, there are more than a few Checkers that shouldn't be in the position of checking, we all know who they are.


Next, I would like to see less in the way of hoop checking as one works his/her way up through the ranks...SO to JFO to FO to SFO to CAPT, every step requires either an interview, sim or a star chamber sit down. Some I agree are required but not that many (other companies seem to manage).

Anyway I could continue but a Guinness is required.

Later.

Last edited by badairsucker; 30th Jun 2007 at 12:05.
badairsucker is offline  
Old 30th Jun 2007, 12:31
  #82 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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The Great QL debate

Buzzbox said:
"As far as "give them more training until they are up to speed", I believe that is the whole point of the JFO system. JFOs are kept in the 'system' where they can be monitored and can consolidate their initial training for 6 months before the QL. Along the way the low time guys (and anyone else who needs it) are given consolidation flights with training captains to help them achieve the required standard by the time they come up for their QL. If they don't achieve that standard then they are given more training before a further QL."

This phrase would have been correct 2 years ago, they were called FC's or flight checks, however, this is no longer the case. FC's were canned when I was JFO, so from the time I checked out as a JFO, I never flew with any trainers until the QL check came along.

I would therefore have to agree that the QL check would now be a waiste of time, but dare I say it, it saves the company $15000 a month per JFO.
Also, in my humble opinion, if you cant fly any aircraft up to the limits, then you shouldnt have the rating. I am however not sure what the industry standard is for these F/O limitations are.

Back to the thread though, it certainly seems to me that the high failure rate is directly attributable to certain individual checkers and there inabilty to adequately train. Interesting when one of them was "pulled" from checking, the pass rate shot up.

No doubt too that the Relief commander (only found in CX) was at a massive dissadvantage when he was finally thrown into the left seat.
Thankfully that is now , sort of, gone

Badair..."We are operating airplanes just like every other airline, not the bloody space shuttle, why do we have so many problems???"

Cos we got our hair on fire... mate!!!!
Al Kida is offline  
Old 30th Jun 2007, 13:46
  #83 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Here & there
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Badairsucker,
I agree with many of your points, and yes CX is looking at getting rid of SOs eventually. How they're going to keep everyone's recency up, I'm not quite sure.

Al Kida,
I can assure you that low-time guys (ie ex-cadets and direct entry pilots with low experience) do still get FC flights - it's called consolidation flying. Perhaps you don't (didn't) fit in to the low-time category?

As I said in an earlier post, perhaps CX should look at getting rid of the whole JFO thing for those that have previous experience. If the ALC is passed to the required standard at the end of line training those pilots with the required experience would then automatically be upgraded to FO.

Last edited by BuzzBox; 30th Jun 2007 at 22:54.
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Old 1st Jul 2007, 01:03
  #84 (permalink)  
Living with Tourettes
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
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Will never happen. CX are in the hurdle erection business, not removal.

We all know the system is rotten to the core. Will it change? Well we all know the answer to that question..
hostile23 is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2007, 03:35
  #85 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: flagrant arbour
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Further to Badairsucker’s entry, the RAAF transport world has been using ‘Competency based assessment’ (pass/fail) for some time now, for the routine periodic checks. While the scoring is gone, the comments are thorough and the candidate is able to address the issues in his/her own time before the next event. While it has its shortcomings, perhaps encouraging a 51% syndrome, it’s effective enough in keeping an eye on standards in the pilot body and providing that ‘top-up’ required by us all every few months. The system is offset by thorough, scored events for upgrades through the ranks of F/O and command upgrade. Thus, the trng dept gets a good look at the candidate periodically throughout his career and the candidates who put in the work and adhere to the comments made, are more likely to pass the upgrades – extremely fair in my opinion and creates a paradigm of work = reward, without the highly negative effect of having one bad day in the sim years ago, resulting in virtually no chance of passing the upgrade.

Buzzbox, regards recency, I don’t see there are any recency requirements around here, apart from landing and LWMO, which are satisfied in the sim anyway…perhaps you mean proficiency? The training tools (FMGS/ECAM trnr etc) should be upgraded and sim time should be made available (fixed base, so there are no OH&S issues) to those approaching an upgrade, thus the trickier sequences can be practiced (V1 cut etc).

The SO position has no relevance anymore and should be scrapped, however there is merit in maintaining at least 3 levels of F/O for the reasons of reducing staleness (+ve psychological effect of progression), and a thorough but fair process of assessment prior to command (as stated above). I’m sure anyone would be happier to be held back 6mths at the F/O level, rather than the ignominy of failing cmd after 10 yrs in the Co.

As for flying at KA to get sectors up, great idea, as long as it’s a 2 way street! Sending SO cadets there is a good idea, but they should only fly with trng capts, the environment in China just isn’t conducive to safe ops otherwise. I’m not sure why CX isn’t processing all new pilots through KA anyway…faster trng process, more hands on, thus more likely to pass upgrades, earlier command for those who want to stay a bit longer before going back to long-haul, everyone wins!

Essentially I’m all for hi standards, unfortunately the trng dept doesn’t have the standardisation expertise to carry out the task in a fair and equitable manner, thus it needs to be simplified. This problem will only get worse as the co gets larger. As for the ‘star chamber’, how does the TRNG Manager who signed-off on the candidate as reaching the required level for command, maintain his dignity when the panel tells him (on numerous occasions)… no, you got it wrong he’s not good enough – what an absurd and incredible insult.
Pollution IV is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2007, 05:06
  #86 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
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Buzzbox, regards recency, I don’t see there are any recency requirements around here, apart from landing and LWMO, which are satisfied in the sim anyway
Landing recency CAN be revalidated in the sim, by way of an exemption to the AN(HK)O. However, CAD takes a dim view of operators that use the exemption as a way of regularly keeping large numbers of pilots in recency, much to the chagrin of one particular HK airline (and I don't mean CX).


As for the ‘star chamber’, how does the TRNG Manager who signed-off on the candidate as reaching the required level for command, maintain his dignity when the panel tells him (on numerous occasions)… no, you got it wrong he’s not good enough – what an absurd and incredible insult.
Simple - these days the command trainee doesn't get 'signed off' until after the star chamber has completed its review. (I'm not saying I agee with the system mind you...)
BuzzBox is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2007, 06:55
  #87 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Buzzbox

"Before that change, CX only recruited very experienced Direct-Entry First Officers. The training system was structured accordingly and most of those FOs went on to pass their commands."

What this comment really means is that the CX training system was effective when candidates joined the company already trained by other airlines but cannot cope when the candidate actually requires to be trained.
This is the essence of CX (and KA apparently) and its approach to training.
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Old 3rd Jul 2007, 14:33
  #88 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
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DTH

Agree with you 100% mate.

We were always taught there were 4 stages of training: instruction, demonstration, practice and assessment.

Instruction is sometimes an out-of-date CBT package backed up with this FCOM system (can we please please have the old Vol 4s back!)

Demonstration is non-existent, arguably due to face-saving, but I'm not that cynical.

Practice, well, we can all read a book.

Assessment is where we first have the opportunity for hands-on experience. Thus, our training system has the reputation of being a trapping/checking system.

With few exceptions, and we know who they are, the trainers I find are helpful but are operating within a system that is constrained by both cost and difficulties, such as having to relocate based crew to Honkers for training.

Back to DTH's comment above, I am of the opinion that:

a. We are hired on our ability to use previous experience to allow us to train ourselves, and

b. Our command course is the length it is as it is a "supervised experience" course, or, in other words, if we are seen to be keen and flawless for 4 months, it is unlikely that we we will err in some form in the future.

BB
Buttie Box is offline  
Old 3rd Jul 2007, 15:52
  #89 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: In my own underpants - most of the time - that is!
Posts: 66
My god.. Is it really that bad in this company.. I remember once when I was proud of being part of this team. Now. Watching young chaps joining and leaving after only a short time Ive come to realize that we or perhaps rather our management pilots and its like have not done well. Not done well at all. We been through a lot in the last two decades. We've lost good friends (though some came back) but I have this empty feeling that things are not getting better at all.. And that is the worst bit. Payrise is one thing, but I think we need to adapt to the "new world". Just not too sure whether its too late for the "new ones".
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Old 3rd Jul 2007, 16:12
  #90 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: YVR
Posts: 84
I’m sure anyone would be happier to be held back 6mths at the F/O level, rather than the ignominy of failing cmd after 10 yrs in the Co.
What will another 6 mos do for a FO since he more than likely been with the company for 9-10 years?
Captain TOGA is offline  
Old 4th Jul 2007, 03:17
  #91 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: asia
Age: 47
Posts: 157
Thumbs down

I agree, 6 months on my fleet may well mean only another 7 or 8 PF sectors! If you're lucky! A huge difference thats going to make to a command course!!!

buggaluggs is offline  
Old 4th Jul 2007, 13:19
  #92 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Everywhere
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How is the retention/pass rate going for those joining as FO fast track commanders on the freighter fleet??
Glass Half Empty is offline  
Old 4th Jul 2007, 18:52
  #93 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 156
None so far
spud is offline  
Old 4th Jul 2007, 20:18
  #94 (permalink)  
FYI
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
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Buttie Box wrote:
"a. We are hired on our ability to use previous experience to allow us to train ourselves, and
b. Our command course is the length it is as it is a "supervised experience" course, or, in other words, if we are seen to be keen and flawless for 4 months, it is unlikely that we we will err in some form in the future."


BB,
I couldn't agree with you more.
FYI
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Old 12th Jul 2007, 01:17
  #95 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: In my own underpants - most of the time - that is!
Posts: 66
Whats your problem WNC,

You dont think we have integrity in Cathay?
ChairmanBoysClub is offline  
Old 12th Jul 2007, 04:39
  #96 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Bottom bunk
Age: 54
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Speaking to friends who have sampled more than just the CX training system, it appears that CX does have a very high standard. BUT, how they set about achieving it is the problem.

Many years ago in QF, just after they had absorbed Australian Airlines(short haul), the long haul fleet had 100% failure rate on commands. They thought the short haul fleet was being slack as they had near 100% pass rate - did I forget to mention that the command course was 9 months long on QF mainline!

We all make mistakes. Thats why we have a PM. Being flawless for 4 months is possible but difficult. Maybe the checkers and trainers have forgotten what it was like to do command course - the self induced stress far greater than anything CX can throw at you!

A mature organisation looks outside itself and asks why other airlines have higher pass rates. A mature organisation seeks best industry practice. But then we don't even manage boeings the way boeing suggest. What did someone post ....we invented aviation here;-)
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Old 13th Jul 2007, 14:15
  #97 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: GC Paradise
Posts: 1,047
WNC,

No integrity?

Then what does that say about you?
FlexibleResponse is offline  

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