Home' Defence Magazine : Issue 7 2009 Contents 35
“The staff at AVMED are extremely passionate
about aviation medicine and this made the course
thoroughly enjoyable,” FLGOFF Wittmann said.
As part of the requirements of Health Directive
305, ADF Aviation Medical Officers (AVMOs) are to
maintain currency with aviation medicine knowledge,
training, equipment in support of current and future
ADF aerospace operations. In recognition of the
current operational tempo and the pace of new and
changing platform acquisitions by the ADF, AVMED
has just hosted the inaugural AVMO Refresher
course, a one-week intensive course designed for
currently practicing ADF AVMOs.
The one-week course will now run annually
in conjunction with the formal AVMO course (five
weeks), thus allowing cross-pollination between
senior and experienced ADF AVMOs and those junior
doctors undertaking the initial training required to
become ADF AVMOs.
Building on the success of the AVMO Refresher
Course, AVMED plans to investigate offering a joint
course to both ADF AVMOs and Specialist Reserve
Medical Officers (SRMOs). The courses will be run in
conjunction but will differ subtly in focus and intent.
Such a training opportunity has been suggested
in recognition of the significant contribution
continuously made by ADF SRMOs to achieving
success of ADF operations. SRMOs also regularly
provide specialist input to AVMED on aircrew clinical
matters but often their actual experience in the practice
and application of aviation medicine can be limited.
Chief Instructor, Squadron Leader Adam Storey
acknowledged the challenges faced by SRMOs.
“With very busy civilian medical commitments,
Specialist Reserve Medical Officers can not often
attend the full five-week AVMO course and providing
flexible learning opportunities for reserve members
may enhance both their involvement and retention
and access to their specialist skill set.
“Specialist Reserve Medical Officers regularly
express an interest in the field and such a course may
provide an insight and exposure into many aspects of
military aviation medicine within the ADF,” SQNLDR
The team at AVMED is led by Commanding
Officer Colonel John Turner and is known for its
exceptional commitment to continuous improvement
and self-assessment in line with the motto of the unit
- Salus Per Scientiam, Safety through Knowledge.
defence magazine ›
oFFICers By Fl y
The Air combat group’s (Acg) Air
force skills Log project was initiated
in 2008 with the primary purpose of
improving the group’s ability to deliver
Australia's capability to control the air
and to conduct precision strikes.
Amendments to the ADF Aviation Maintenance
Management Manual AAP 7001.059B2(AM1) created
a need within ACG to re-evaluate the way avionic
and aircraft-fitter personnel were being utilised and
developed in the aircraft maintenance environment.
Air Combat Group identified that the vast
majority of fitters were being employed mainly on
flight line tasks while they progressed through their
competency journal. This, in effect, placed the bulk of
the workload with the corporals and also did not provide
the most effective development of fitters to conduct
Air Combat Group formed a Technical Workforce
Project Team for the purpose of developing a method
to deliver a more useable technical workforce with
the ability to generate additional serviceable aircraft.
The project team – in conjunction with the
Air Force Technical Trade Sponsor – developed
the Air Force Skills Log as a direct replacement
for the competency journal in order to meet these
requirements. The driving force behind the skills log
was the need to improve the process of recording
a fitter’s work history prior to assessment and to
provide a basis for progressive task authorisation in
their Record of Training and Employment (RTE).
The competency journal format was focussed
on providing fitters with an aerospace industry
certificate IV, whereas the skills log is focused on
progressing fitters through a logical sequence of
training, on-the-job experience and assessments
leading to progressive task authorisation.
Fitters will still receive their certificate IV upon
successful completion of the skills log, however ACG
has also placed priority on ensuring that the fitter
workforce is able to be more effectively utilised in
the workplace and is able to progressively exercise
and expand their task authorisations over time. This
will better prepare them for their eventual role as
qualified technicians. The skills log is the tool that
will help achieve this goal.
The project team has received positive feedback
from squadrons on the functionality of the skills log
and statistics indicate ACG now has an increasingly
more useable fitter workforce. The introduction of the
skills log has increased the number of authorisations
in a fitter’s RTE.
In June 2009, the trend for an increase of
competency assessments continued, with 36 per
cent of competency assessments being able to
correlate to more than one skill, signifying the
efficiency of the new program.
The direct effect of the number of authorisations
is evident at the operational level for units such as
No.2 Operational Conversion Unit (2OCU). Since the
introduction of the skills log there has been an influence
at the workshop level with section heads being able to
progressively task authorise fitters after an approved
aerospace assessor has assessed a competency.
Within months of arriving at 2OCU from the RAAF
School of Technical Training and after completing the
F/A-18 Hornet Safety and Familiarisation Course and
relevant fitters’ course, fitters have been assessed as
competent and consequently task authorised to work
on individual systems.
“The fitter can now work on a job without being
accompanied by a mentor, freeing up a valuable person for
another job,” Senior Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge
of Avionics, Flight Sergeant Marco Brugnatti said.
This in effect doubles the efficiency of the two
fitters over the competency journal system and gives
members a greater overall sense of belonging within
the unit, leading to a more productive workforce and
Senior Engineering Officer of 2OCU, Squadron
Leader Craig Darby said: “The ability to maintain
multiple aircraft in parallel with the same work force
strength is essential for 2OCU to maintain required
sortie generation rates, especially considering the
effects of an aging F/A-18 platform”.
The unit has seen a steady increase in personnel
effectiveness through progressive task authorisation
since the introduction of the skills log, which has
translated to a far greater maintenance capability
and allowed the unit to sustain their required tempo.
skills log project
delivers PreCIse ControL
Leading Aircraftmen David Holme,
Ryan Pratt and Michael Turon, from 2
Operational conversion unit, discuss their
Air force skills Logs with flight sergeant
Marco brugnatti. Photo: LAC Craig Barrett
Links Archive Issue 6 2009 Issue 8 2009 Navigation Previous Page Next Page