Starting a corporate flight department can be a daunting task. There are many things to consider, from the initial planning stages to the department’s day-to-day operations. But with, careful planning and execution can be an enriching experience for your company and its employees. Here are six tips to get you started.
Define Your Company’s Needs
Before taking the plunge and starting a corporate flight department, you must ensure it’s the right move for your company. There are a few key factors to consider. How often will your executives need to fly? What is the average distance of each trip? How many people will need to travel at the same time?
Answering these questions will give you a good sense of the aircraft you’ll need and how many pilots you’ll need to hire. You should also consider your company’s budget and whether you have the space to house an aircraft. If you’re not sure whether starting a corporate flight department is suitable for your company, consult with an expert. They can help you weigh the pros and cons and make an informed decision.
Select the Right Aircraft
When starting a corporate flight department, it is essential to select the right aircraft. The aircraft type will depend on many factors, including the company’s size, travel frequency, and budget. A small company may only need a light jet, while a large company may require a heavy jet or turboprop. The flight department will also need to consider the types of trips that will be taken.
For instance, a piston-engine aircraft may be sufficient if the company only needs to travel short distances. However, a long-range and high-speed jet will be necessary if international travel is required.
Besides the right aircraft, having the right equipment is vital, which is essential for starting a corporate flight department. For instance, you might need a strong electric airplane tug to carry things like luggage, fuel, or airplane equipment to the aircraft. A strong tug can make traveling these things easy so that you or your employees won’t have to worry about everything.
Create a Budget
Anyone who is thinking of starting a corporate flight department will need to create a budget. The first step is to determine the size and type of aircraft that will be required. The next step is to get quotes from various vendors for the purchase or lease of the plane. Once the aircraft has been acquired, it must be equipped with the appropriate navigational and safety equipment.
The costs of fuel, maintenance, and insurance must also be considered. In addition, the salaries of pilots and other flight crew must be considered. By carefully creating a budget, it will be possible to start a corporate flight department without overspending.
Get the Right People on Board
Getting the right team together is critical to any business venture’s success, especially when starting a corporate flight department. Some key positions need to be filled to get off the ground, and it’s essential to consider each role before making any hires carefully.
First and foremost, you’ll need a strong leader at the helm. Someone with experience in aviation and business can make quick decisions and keep a cool head under pressure. They’ll need to be good at delegating tasks and can build a cohesive team. Just as important, they should be able to communicate with both pilots and non-pilots alike effectively.
Next, you’ll need to find a few experienced pilots. Ideally, these should be individuals with significant flight time in the type of aircraft you’ll be operating. They should also have a solid understanding of FAA regulations and procedures. In addition, it’s helpful if they have some experience working in a corporate environment. Beyond that, you’ll want personable and professional pilots—someone your employees will feel comfortable entrusting to their safety.
Develop Standard Operating Procedures
Starting a corporate flight department can be a complex undertaking, but there are steps you can take to make the process smoother. One of the most important things you can do is develop standard operating procedures (SOPs). SOPs provide instructions for every aspect of running a flight department, from scheduling flights to maintaining aircraft. Having well-defined SOPs will help ensure your operation runs smoothly and efficiently.
Furthermore, SOPs can help train new employees and ensure everyone is on the same page. Whether you’re just starting or looking to streamline your operation, developing SOPs is crucial in setting up a successful corporate flight department.
By taking the time to start a corporate flight department the right way, you can ensure that your operation runs smoothly and efficiently. From acquiring the right aircraft to developing standard operating procedures, there are some important factors to consider. Taking care of the details can set your flight department up for success.