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SGHA-SLA and Effective Negotiation Behaviors (Classroom, 5 days)

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Did you know that in the past 4 years, 720 participants from 94 countries have taken this course with IATA?


The 2018 version of the Standard Ground Handling Agreement (SGHA) has arrived! Learn about the latest updates and how to use the IATA SGHA as a commercial agreement and services description document.

This course covers the SGHA section by section, giving you the foundations to write the Annex B and Service Level Agreement (SLA) accurately and effectively. Learn how to enhance cooperation, efficiency and savings in your negotiations through technical training and exercises that replicate today’s global marketplace.

This course is available at IATA Training Centers, Regional Training Partner locations, and on-demand as in-house training.

Course format

  • This classroom course provides 5 days (40 hours) of instruction delivered by an official IATA Instructor.
  • Student performance will be based on an assessment


  • Participants should have prior knowledge of Ground Handling Business and Operations
  • Recommended level is Management and Professional
  • The recommended level of language proficiency is ICAO Operational Level 4 for courses in English or equivalent level for other languages.

Next class

Nov 11 - Nov 15, 2019 - Switzerland, Geneva (IATA)
6 additional classes are scheduled. See all

What you will learn

Upon completing this course you will be able to:

  • Identify the differences between 2013 and 2018 versions
  • Analyze the articles in the main agreement to identify the opportunities and risks
  • the services and descriptions of the Sections in Annex A
  • Derive and write a proper Annex B, reflecting the business and operational requirements
  • Set achievable and meaningful targets in the SLA, using the new template, enhancing safety and service quality through commonly agreed targets
  • Make the best use of time in negotiations, meeting the target with the minimum possible effort and time investment
  • Improve cooperation in your negotiations by recognizing your counterpart’s objectives

Course content

  • Changes in 2018 version compared to 2013 version
  • Standard Ground Handling Agreement
    • History and legal framework of the SGHA
    • Versions overview: 1993 - 2013
    • Liability, as in Article 8 of the main agreement
    • Article 11 of the Main Agreement
    • Operations safety
    • Duration and termination terms
    • Review of Annex A and B
    • Interpretation of all sections and paragraphs
  • Service Level Agreement
    • Principles of the SLA
    • Linking SLA to SGHA
    • Operational needs reflection on Targets
    • Bonus schemes
    • The SLA and aviation safety
    • Measuring and monitoring of SLA performance
  • Business-to-Business negotiations
    • Negotiations: achieving more with less effort
    • Business-to-business relations
    • Cultural differences and opportunities

Download the course outline


  • Case studies
  • Exercises

Who should attend

This course is recommended for:

  • Airline and GSP Buyers, Sellers, and Contract Managers
  • Commercial, Agreement performance, and Service quality managers
  • Station managers
  • Legal counsel

Certificate awarded

An IATA Certificate of Participation is awarded to participants who successfully complete the workshop.

This course is a step toward earning an IATA Diploma in:

Additional information

About IATA Classroom Training
We train more than 10,000 aviation professionals annually through our global network of IATA Training Centers, Regional Training Partners, and in private in-house sessions. Our 300+ classroom courses are developed using IATA’s unique industry insight and delivered by IATA Instructors, experts in their fields. More

Further training
Graduates of this course can apply for the Harvard ManageMentor© (HMM) distance learning program at a special graduate price.


Ludwig Dorfmeier, Director - Contract Air, Middle East and Africa, DHL Aviation EEMEA
With a B.Sc. in Aviation Management, an MBA, and 15 years of flight operations experience behind me, I wanted to refresh my knowledge - this time with a focus on ground operations. I researched several executive-level programs but chose IATA’s Ground Operations Diploma program for its reputation and convenient course schedule.

The SGHA-SLA & Effective Negotiation Behaviors workshop was a great introduction to IATA’s courses and approach to ground operations training. I work with SGHAs - mainly wet and dry lease agreements – daily, and this practical course has helped me utilize the manual to its fullest and formulate solutions to issues when they arise on the ramp. Thanks to a lot of practice opportunities provided during the course, I also feel more confident when generating agreements with our established pool of operators.

Theory is great, but it’s the experience the instructors and other participants bring to the classroom I find most beneficial. I recently took a course with a group of CAA and Airport Authority representatives from Nigeria, a country in which DHL operates. It was a valuable opportunity to meet some of the people I work with and see how we might increase our cooperation on common issues. My colleagues are now very aware of my training history with IATA, and I recommend IATA courses to those interested in furthering their aviation careers. I strongly believe IATA courses and diplomas are useful at all career levels, increasing the credibility of both the individuals and their companies.

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