Sunclass Airlines is a part of Nordic Leisure Travel Group and operates charter flights from Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland. Sunclass’ fleet consists of 8 Airbus A321s and 2 Airbus A330 aircraft. The airline trains 900 crew members in 7 bases in Scandinavia.
Being a service department for their crew, Sunclass Airlines focuses on competency-based training and evidence-based training. Managing crew training in 7 different bases requires several arrangements – organise travel and accommodation for the crew, secure instructors and training facilities. However, Sunclass Airlines found a way to provide the best training for its crew and reduce the challenges connected to crew training across bases.
To reduce the need to travel to get the training and help crew stay current wherever they are, Sunclass Airlines decided to implement virtual training. Virtual trainers allow the crew to access the virtual aircraft with standardised procedures using their own mobile device and don’t require any additional VR equipment.
By converting its Standard Operating Procedures to virtual trainers that are accessible for crew anytime and anywhere, Sunclass Airlines achieves optimal crew performance.
“We are trying to establish a Virtual Training Academy to provide the best training for our crews where they are. Training with virtual trainers helped our flight crew achieve better standards in their competencies.”
Result – Virtual Crew Training Academy
After implementing virtual training, Sunclass Airlines did two surveys – one with the flight crew and the other with the instructors. 46 pilots and 8 instructors participated in the survey.
Pilots were asked to assess their competencies after using virtual trainers and 93% of them agreed that the virtual trainer contributes to better application of procedures.
84% of Sunclass pilots agree that the virtual trainer is a more effective tool than the FCOM-PRO.
Pilot Survey – Virtual Trainer is a more effective tool than the FCOM-PRO
FCOM-PRO – Procedures stated in the official manual
93% of Sunclass pilots agree that virtual cockpit trainers helped them improve the application of procedures.
Pilot Survey – Virtual Trainer contributes to a better application of procedures (APK)
Application of Procedures – discipline in the grading of crew performance
According to the survey from Sunclass Airlines, instructors are also in favour of using virtual trainers for a technical refresher.
Instructors are convinced that pilots gained more knowledge when studying through the virtual refresher course.
The survey also shows that 88% of instructors agree that the virtual trainer contributes to a better application of procedures (APK).
Instructor Survey – Virtual Trainer is a more effective tool than the FCOM-PRO
75% of Sunclass instructors agree that the virtual trainer provides pilots with a better overview of the procedures than FCOM – PRO.
Instructor Survey – Virtual Trainer provides the student with a better overview of the procedures than the FCOM does
Virtual Crew Training Academy at Sunclass Airlines provides virtual trainers for cabin crew, too. Main objective is to achieve better standards and support decision-making.
For some training sessions, it is required that cabin crew travel to visit the aircraft to train the location of emergency equipment and safety procedures.
Accessing the aircraft through a virtual trainer prior to the training session helps the crew build their confidence before entering the aircraft. In addition, the crew gets familiar with the different cabin layouts before the training session, which allows more time for practical training that can only be done in the aircraft or a mock-up.
Virtual Training as a New Approach to Traditional e-Learning
Virtual training may evoke training in virtual reality (VR), but there is a difference between these two. You can take traditional e-learning to the next level without VR equipment.
Learn more in our blog post.
- No extra simulator sessions for preparation
- Less simulator training – reduced crew training costs
- Same success rate
- Maintain proficiency from home
Adopting virtual training and establishing Virtual Crew Training Academy helps Sunclass Airlines to maintain crew proficiency and reduce training costs. Virtual trainers enable the crew to prepare efficiently from the comfort of their home and no extra simulator sessions for preparation are required. Since most of the cabin crew training can be done through virtual trainers, the number of training sessions in a simulator is reduced.
Post-Pandemic Refresher Training
In 2020, the global pandemic hit Sunclass Airlines as much as others in the industry.
Most pilots were sent home, didn’t fly and even worked other jobs for almost a year.
Watch the video and learn how Sunclass Airlines brought pilots up to speed.