How’s Your Drone Service Provider At Crew Management?

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How’s Your Drone Service Provider At Crew Management?

How do you know if your drone service provider is good at crew management? Crew Resource Management is terminology by the FAA to describe the management of multiple people in a crew. (FYI: The FAA uses a lot of acronyms but they save time so you’ll have extra time to read this article. LOL)

CRM (crew resource management) focuses on a drone pilot operating in crew environments and managing his or her crew safely and efficiently.

What Makes a Great Remote Pilot In Command Leader?

When the RPIC (Remote Pilot-In-Command) is working with others during a flight mission and has crew members that are helping, it’s about making sure that everybody knows exactly what they’re doing.  All crew members know the method of operation for that proposed flight. The RPIC is taking in all the circumstances pertinent to that flight mission. That includes weather, hazards, rules, regulations, etc.

The document called AC 107-2 – Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) states,

“ A remote PIC uses many different resources to safely operate an sUAS and needs to be able to manage these resources effectively.’ …’ Therefore, a remote PIC must be able to function in a team environment and maximize team performance. This skill set includes situational awareness, proper allocation of tasks to individuals, and avoidance of work overloads in self and in others. And effectively communicating with other members of the crew, such as VOs and persons manipulating the controls of an sUAS.”

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Drone Pilot-in-Charge and Crew

Who’s Responsible For Everything?

Basically, the RPIC is. He or she is responsible for the crews’ actions and safety (crew, civilians, property), etc.  Furthermore, it’s up to the RPIC to get the mission accomplished on time and within client specifications.  If the RPIC does not ensure good CRM, the FAA can fine or even revoke the RPIC’s license. And the RPIC would be held liable for any damages incurred. Adherence to good crew resource principles ensures the client’s needs are met, the risk is minimized, and the task is completed safely and efficiently. The RPIC must be a good team leader.

Who’s On The Crew?

Usually at least a VO. The VO (Visual Observer) helps the RPIC (Remote Pilot-In-Command) have a second pair of eyes. The VO aids the RPIC to avoid obstacles and hazards not only for the drone but also for the drone pilot as well.

What Helps the Crew to be Successful?

The RPIC needs to communicate clearly with their VO and everyone on their crew. The use of two-way radios can help with this. For example, if the VO or crew is stationed farther away not in earshot. Additionally, walkie-talkies can help if the mission is in a high-traffic and/or noisy location. During the mission communication is key.  But that communication should begin even before the mission begins. All on the crew need to be well briefed by the RPIC beforehand so they each clearly know what their roles and responsibilities are. This way all can safely and efficiently contribute to the success of the mission. A great RPIC makes the best use of his or her crew and allows each crew member to give input. An excellent RPIC knows how to highlight each crew member’s strengths to create an atmosphere of safety and excellence. Good crew resource management means a crew and the remote pilot in command are better together than just a remote pilot alone.

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Drone Pilots at Construction Site

Why It’s Important to Hire The Best Drone Service Provider

When considering hiring a drone service provider make sure they are good crew managers. If not you could be putting yourself at risk. Crews that are not properly managed by their RPIC could cause severe damage and set a project way back. Save time and money and have peace of mind knowing the drone service provider you are hiring uses good CRM. He knows what to do and so does his crew. The best drone service provider knows how to manage their crew in such a way that will mitigate risks, and liability, and ensure the project is completed safely and on schedule.

When you hire a great drone service provider you’re also hiring a great RPIC that knows how to utilize great CRM. So hire one ASAP.

From The Editor:

Do you need to hire a professional drone service provider?  To speak to an aerial data specialist, fill out a form, email us or for even faster response times, give us a call at (833) FLY-4YOU or (833) 359-4968.  Check out our transparent pricing at Drone Photography Pricing and watch this space as we expand on the above topics and more over the coming weeks and months.  If you like this post, feel free to click the share button at the bottom of the page.  We appreciate you helping us by spreading the content we share on our blog.

Chanel Harmon