IATF - The Bridge over Training Gaps
The IATA Airline Training Fund (IATF) is the industry’s non-profit initiative to help close aviation skills gaps in areas of the world where it is most needed. IATF sponsors regional and in-company training solutions to help airlines attain proficiency in industry standards and best practices, while building and strengthening key competencies to allow them to meet business objectives and the challenges of the airline industry.
In 2014, IATF contributed to developing the skills and strengthening the capacities of 3,046 aviation industry professionals from developing nations. These opportunities involved 152 training events. In all, over 24,750 airline industry professionals have benefitted from IATF’s training opportunities in recent years.
IATF is funded by annual contributions from IATA and its member airlines.
Safety improvement has always been IATF’s number one priority. Two areas of focus have been the SMS Implementation Training Program (SMSITP) and the IOSA Implementation Training Initiative (IOSA-ITI) launched in support of the Abuja Declaration on Aviation Safety in Africa, which includes the requirement for all IOSA-eligible airlines in Africa to join the IOSA Registry by the end of 2015.
These cutting-edge action learning initiatives require members of a dedicated task force to conduct a gap analysis vis-à-vis related standards and recommended practices, and then work on a corrective action plan with clear accountabilities, timelines and deliverables.
Over the past four years, 51 airlines from Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, CIS and the South Pacific have benefited from SMSITP. Boliviana de Aviación, the newest IATA member in Latin America, is currently receiving support from SMSITP.
Over 2013 and 2014, 20 airlines from Africa benefited from IOSA-ITI. Three new African airlines have recently joined IOSA-ITI:
- Allied Air (Nigeria)
- Proflight (Zambia)
- Air Peace (Nigeria)
The application of a fourth airline from Africa is currently under review.
Since 2014, training support has also been extended to civil aviation authorities in Africa through the IATA Diploma in Safety Oversight. This program aims to enhance IOSA awareness and improve the oversight capabilities of safety inspectors in the region.
Other regional diploma programs
To sustain aviation in Africa and the South Pacific, and to help reduce the cost of training to the industry, IATF has joined forces with the African Airlines Association (AFRAA), the Airline Association of Southern Africa (AASA), and the Association of South Pacific Airlines (ASPA) to offer two sessions of the IATA Diploma in Airline Management in Africa and one session in the South Pacific in 2015.
The aim of this initiative is to enhance the business competencies of airline executives working in one of three clusters: Network and Route Development, Revenue Management and Airline Management. To obtain this diploma, nominees will be required to present a business case to their respective CEOs on how to improve their airline’s performance under the cluster they signed up for.
Likewise, IATF is offering the IATA Diploma in Revenue Accounting and Control in Africa and the South Pacific, in collaboration with AFRAA and ASPA. The aim of this initiative is to enhance the skills of revenue accounting specialists and to reduce revenue losses resulting from inaccuracies and shortcomings in revenue accounting and control processes.
Finally, IATF is offering the IATA Diploma in Aviation Security, hosted in Kigali by the Civil Aviation Authority of Rwanda. This program is open to aviation security professionals from African airlines or civil aviation authorities committed to completing the four diploma courses in 2015.