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Ep.3 – Training needs assessments (featuring Scott Macpherson)

Podcast | February 21, 2019

Author: Brent Fishlock

Today’s topic is..”The real purpose of a training needs assessments or TNA.”

A training needs assessment is a comprehensive evaluation of an operator’s CURRENT training program. The TNA looks at all aspects of an Operator’s training program including:

  • training that must be completed no matter what the operator does,
  • training that must completed based on a specific thing the operator does, and
  • training that should be done based on identified risk factors.

This is a great topic because in some cases a training needs assessments can actually REDUCE the amount of training an operator is required to take.

My guest today is the Founder and President of, Mr. Scott Macpherson.


Scott please explain to our listeners what a training needs assessment is?

Where did the TNA come from?

Sounds like it’s a lot like a gap analysis?

A TNA uses SMS risk data to help create effective training but it is also true that a TNA evaluates an operator’s SMS?

In the news

(‘In the news’ is a segment of the podcast where we change topics for a few minutes to talk about other events in business aviation.)

Today’s “in the news” segment is Canadian based but I promise to make it more international next time.

Crew Resource Management in Canada is changing in January 2019. I have talked about this briefly in a previous podcast but I think it’s worth updating operators in Canada as we have had many questions about Advisory Circular 700-042 and what it means for business aviation operators. We asked Transport Canada a few questions and received differing answers from opposite ends of the country.

Here are some updates:

We have been told that the new CRM referred to as “Contemporary CRM” is required to be quote “approved and in place”unquote at your operation by January 31, 2019 however it is not clear if everyone must have completed their training by that date.

There is a classroom component for virtually all operators but we are asking Transport Canada if a web-based virtual classroom is considered compliant.

Many of your team members that were not required to take CRM training in the past must now do so annually including: flight crew, flight attendants, dispatchers/flight followers, ground crew and maintenance personnel. This means that dispatchers will be trained in Situational Awareness amongst other topics that have historically only been flightcrew topics.


Be sure to subscribe to read our newsletter and check our blog for updates on this new training.

Brent Fishlock is a technical advisor for Currently an airline pilot, he also has an extensive background in corporate aviation.

Scott has been a pilot and manager in corporate aviation for over 25 years, with experience in Citations and Falcons. Scott led his flight department to receive IBAC’s first IS-BAO certificate. As a corporate aviation manager and chief pilot, he saw the need for a single source for all the recurrent safety training elements common in best practices standards (e.g., IS-BAO), and required by regulators and underwriters.

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