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CHAPTER 3 Getting Started A system is defined as a set of interacting or interdependent entities, real or abstract, forming an integrated whole. An SMS has several functions or parts that need to work well together to be effective in helping maintain the airport as a safe place. Implementing an SMS involves following a small number of basic principles and then adapt- ing proven SMS pillars to fit the size, type, and management style of the operation. As you read this document, you will likely find that most of the pillars and elements for SMS are already pres- ent in your airport. To have an SMS, the airport operator needs to put in place the elements or functions required by an SMS. For example, one of the required SMS elements is a safety reporting process. The air- port should make available one or more means to allow airport workers (staff and non-staff), and even passengers, to report safety issues and hazards. For example, a phone line that is acces- sible to anyone using or working at the airport could be an alternative. However, the process involves much more than the phone line. The notification provided needs to be forwarded to the right person, who is responsible for recording, analyzing, and taking specific actions. The reporter also needs to get some feedback on his/her report; otherwise, the reporter may not feel like submitting another report. The requirements for each SMS process are described in this guidebook. The implementation process and phases are described in Chapter 4. The airport operator needs to follow six basic steps to achieve the goal of implementing the system. This chapter will help you take the initial steps toward SMS implementation at your airport. Each section describes one step on the SMS planning phase before the implementation is initi- ated. These steps include the following: 1. Obtaining support from management to develop the SMS (Section 3.1) 2. Finding the right project manager to coordinate the SMS planning activities (Section 3.2) 3. Selecting an appropriate SMS structure or model (Section 3.3) 4. Determining how to use the resources and SMS processes that the airport already has and build upon them (Section 3.4) 5. Conducting a gap analysis to determine which SMS elements the airport already has, which ones need to be adapted, and which ones need to be created (Section 3.5) 6. Documenting the SMS (Section 3.6) 3.1 Management Commitment Safety, it is often said, is everybody's business. Every member of an organization has a role to play in the management of safety. However, for SMS to be anything other than a collection of 33