A Task Force led by The International Air Cargo Association (TIACA), with active support from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA), announced the completion today of a two-year project on educational needs for the next-generation of managers for the worldwide air cargo industry.
The TIACA report was welcomed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), which has cooperative agreements in place with all three industry organizations. The Task Force report supports ICAO’s ongoing Next Generation of Aviation Professionals (NGAP) programme and the UN aviation body has confirmed it will be providing input as the report recommendations are now jointly reviewed.
The Task Force report notes that managers not only must possess basic skills and detailed operational knowledge, but also the so-called ‘higher-skills’, which include leadership, team-building and market and financial analysis techniques. While numerous training programmes are available with respect to fundamental skills, specific air cargo-focused programmes for the higher-level skills are limited. The researchers agreed that the industry as a whole must address this deficiency and the potential for creation of a certificated and preferably accredited programme. As part of its effort, the Task Force compiled a comprehensive educational matrix identifying existing courses and areas of deficiency.
The report also pointed out that, without access to such programmes, the air cargo industry could have difficulty attracting and equipping qualified talent. An additional concern surrounds the loss of management personnel to other sectors of the logistics industry. Both areas were seen as having the potential to put the air cargo industry at a competitive leadership disadvantage.
As the report’s recommendations continue to be reviewed by the four organizations, a series of next steps will be considered including the creation of focused courses as part of a comprehensive programme addressing the needs of the next-generation of worldwide air cargo industry managers and leaders.