Introducing Sofema Aviation Services

Sofema Aviation Services and our Partner AETS – Hold together EASA Part 147 Approval BG.147.0005 issued by the Bulgarian CAA

Since 2008 SAS has delivered training and issued certificates to more than 20 000 delegates throughout multiple regions on several different continents. A regulator has never refused a SAS certificate and in fact we have delivered a number of training courses specifically for several regulatory authorities. One of the most frequent questions we are asked concerns the relationship between EASA Regulatory Training and 147 approval, simply because the person asking the question misunderstands the role of 147 approval.
Please note – 147 is NOT in any way a generic training approval it is only for providing BASIC and TYPE training to PART 66 Licensed aircraft engineers and for no other purpose.
SAS receives its regulatory training approval from the receiving organisation based on a range of acceptance criteria including the continuous demonstration of effective delivery. Our testament to effective delivery may be found here

Your own Quality Assurance Manager is your Organisations “Regulatory Expert” and he should be familiar with the above and the role he (or she) plays in establishing and maintaining regulatory compliance throughout the leadership and certification team.

EASA Part of the Solution or Part of the Problem?

1/ Q  -  What are EASA Compliant Regulatory Training Courses?

A  - They are courses which either meet the specific need of the organisation as required by EASA 145 or other relevant regulations or add value to the in company need to improve competence. (however they are outside of the remit of the EASA 147 Organisation).
For example there is no EASA proscribed organisation approval to deliver the following training courses – Human Factors to comply with EASA 145.A.30, Fuel Tank Safety and EWIS.
Please Note -This situation also applies to and includes many other courses which add value to the competence of the delegate whether it is related to Part 145, Part M, Part 21, Part ORO approved organisation or ATO approved Organisation.

2/ Q – What are the organisational obligations regarding EASA Compliant 145 organisation courses?

A – Under the EASA system it is the responsibility of the organisation to ensure that any training is compliant not just with EASA regulations but also with the internal competence management and oversight requirements of the Organisation.
All Sofemaonline training courses are based on material provided by Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) www.sassofia.com and are intended to be fully compliant with the regulations. However please note it is for the receiving organisation to ensure that the material meets your needs.
To support this obligation if you sign up 5 or more delegates for a single training we will also provide an additional access for a nominated quality auditor to assess the training. (In this way you as an organisation can ensure the training meets your expectations, in addition it will enable you to demonstrate you have audited the material which is part of the 145 audit program)
Such access will provided before you pay for the training (we are confident that our training is compliant and we want to support you in the best way possible)
If you have less than 5 persons who wish to take the training we suggest you initially pay for a single course and use it for the purpose of internal approval.

3/ Q  -  Why is there so much misunderstanding regarding the role and responsibility of EASA Part 147 Organisations?

- Essentially there are 2 reasons – The first is that EASA 147 Organisations use the misunderstanding as a positive to promote a marketing benefit and the second is that EASA has failed to communicate the role of EASA Part 147 in simple and common terms to Industry.

4/ Q  -  What Approval is Required to Deliver EASA Compliant Regulatory Training?

A  - The approval comes from the receiving (Part 145 or Part ORO) organisation, EASA does not issue any authority for organisations to deliver regulatory training.

5/ Q –  What Approval does a Part 147 hold ?

A  - A Part-147 organisation approval only grants privileges related to courses and examinations required by Part-66 (Basic and Type Licence) As a consequence, the privileges of a Part-147 organisation do not include providing other courses such as, but not limited to, Human Factors, EWIS, FTS, Regulations, Engine Run-Up, Procedures, etc. (this is a statement from EASA on record with SAS) Please note that often an EASA Part 147 Type Training organisation simply does not have the competence to deliver effective regulatory training and the recipient organisation should understand that the responsibility for compliance sits firmly with the recipient and there is no “credit” in respect of a 147 completion certificate.

6/ Q – Who can approve such “non 147 training courses” ?

A –  These courses can be imparted by any organisation (including  your organisation) as long as they are acceptable to the corresponding competent authority. By this we mean that, for example, a course performed on Regulation 145 for  the purpose of qualifying the Quality Manager of a Part-145 organisation can be imparted by any organisation as long as it is acceptable to the competent authority responsible for the Part-145 organisation (as regards to content, duration, instructors, etc).

7/ Q – Does the Regulator have to directly approve such EASA compliant regulatory training directly?

A – The Competent Authority / Regulator Authority may perform any audit in support of oversight of an approved organisation as it sees fit – usually the CA/RA is accepting of the decisions made by the receiving organisation, based on the competence selection and management processes as accepted typically through the Vendor Approval Process / Quality Assurance Process.

8/ Q – Why is there no “approval” for EASA Regulatory training organisations?

A – Because as EASA (or Gulf Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA)) Quality Managers will attest the responsibility for “training standards” ultimately lies with the organisation itself?
This responsibility essentially means that the organisation must ensure that it manages the competence of its staff to ensure they are able to deliver their required role in the most effective way. (This includes any required training for compliance with 145 for example or for other organisational objectives).

9/ Q. Does this mean that organisations can not rely on a “pre approved solution” for example an accredited regulatory training organisation?

A – Absolutely correct, this option does not exist in EASA …why ? because EASA recognizes and understands that ultimately the organisation must assume responsibility for the standard of training- In fact it is for this reason the SAS provides access to the material to allow the Quality Manager or Training Manager to make an assessment of the content of the material prior to any commitments being made.

10/ Q. How to assess the material meets the approved standard?

A – SAS has delivered regulatory training to more than 20,000 delegates since we started in 2008, this number continues to grow, as a core business activity it is incumbent on SAS to ensure that we remain fully compliant and for this reason each and every courses is verified prior to deliver to ensure it is compliant with the latest EASA changes. SAS welcomes audits from regulatory authorities and companies to measure the quality & effectiveness of our training product.
The organisation should itself start with a training objective, then to measure this against the product offered (gap analysis) – finally to assess the delivery process for instructional competency – this is the EASA process.

11/ Q – Are SAS Certificates accepted by all Regulatory Authorities ?

A- Sofema Aviation Services have been delivering EASA and GCAA compliant regulatory training for 11 years. Training is currently delivered in Europe, Middle East, Far East and Africa. Certificates issued by SAS are accepted as evidence that the delivered training has taken place.  We have never had any instance of SAS certificates NOT being accepted by a regulatory authority. Last year SAS issued more than 4000 Certificates – not a single one was rejected for any reason.

12/ Q – Is Sofema Aviation Services accepted by Competent Authorities to deliver Regulatory Training ?

A – Sofema Aviation Services have been delivering EASA and GCAA Compliant Regulatory Training for 11 years. Training is currently delivered in Europe, Middle East, Far East and Africa. Certificates issued by SAS are accepted as evidence that the delivered training has taken place.

13/ Q – Do Competent Authority regulators attend SAS Training courses ?

A – Regulators from the local CAA are invited to attend all SAS training courses and frequently do so, in addition SAS delivers “regulator only” training courses.

14/ Q- How many delegates attend SAS training courses ?

A – During 2016 more than 2500 delegates attended SAS and www.sofemaonline.com Training Courses within the Operations and Maintenance Environments.​

15/ Q – Is it possible to receive a soft copy of the training course ?

A – Yes SAS provide a free soft copy of all training courses to each delegate who requests, the process is simple and involves a request email to sas.support@sassofia.com the request is validated against the attendance register and you will be sent your free copy, please ensure your email can receive file sizes up to 20 meg (Gmail and Yahoo are ok for this purpose). 

Please note that this is only possible if the request has been received not later than three (3) months after the end of the training.

16/ Q – What Certificate will I receive on completion of the training ?

A – All delegates will receive an electronic certificate of training confirming the completion of course attendance in the appropriate subjects. Course certificates are issued on payment of all outstanding invoices, within 14 business days following the clearance of the received payment.​

17/ Q – Do all courses include an examination?

A – SA- Exams are generally provided for longer courses or specifically when the receiving organisation requests an exam this may be either

a) Provided during the course (considering the time constraints)
b) Provided to the Quality Assurance Manager so that the Company may provide internal

18/ Q – What happens if I cannot attend the full training, will I still receive a certificate?

A – SAS understands that delegates including Accountable Executives and Senior Managers may from time to time, at short notice, for a variety of reasons, miss part of the training or they are called away from a training at short notice. Furthermore we understand that this may cause a problem to satisfy the attendance requirements to qualify for a full certificate. Please Note the following statement which is applicable in such cases.

Following a reduction of attendance hours by 1 or more delegates, the Instructor will review the actual delivery of subject matter and will determine whether.
a) The Delegate has attended sufficient hours to qualify for a full certificate
b) The Delegate has not covered the full syllabus and shall be eligible to receive a “partial” certificate. This special certificate will be produced in conjunction with the Instructor. (This document will be provided without additional cost)
c) In addition to the above any person who misses a full training will be allowed to attend the same or similar in the future (without additional cost). Please note this option is not transferable.

19/ Q – How is my certificate validated?

A – Certificates carry a unique document control number. They are signed electronically.

20/ Q – Will I receive a hard copy certificate ?

A – To invoke effective management and control SAS took as best practice to send certificates on PDF formats via email, this way our clients can print them on preferable paper and keep electronically as well, In this way SAS is able to support a cost effective training without any reduction in Quality.

21/ Q – What If I insist on a hard copy certificate

A – Hard Copies of Certificates are available on course completion individually at either 25 USD each to cover administration and air mail (Courier will incur additional cost) or in batches at 10 USD each plus “batch” Air Mail or courier at cost).

22/ Q – We want to have an organisation nominated EASA 145 and Aircraft Legislation Regulatory Trainer in our organisation. How can we achieve this?

A – To achieve this requires a knowledgeable and competent trainer who is acceptable to the organisation Quality System and the Regulatory Authority.

To support this process SAS is pleased to offer:.

a) A training skills competence 

 Focused training course​ – for example SAS 4 Days Training for Trainers in a Maintenance Environment.

b) A detailed understanding of the regulations to a standard whereby you are able to explain in an effective way.

Typically this will be achieved by attending the actual regulatory course say 2 times then to deliver under guidance and in this way to achieve the necessary competence.

23/ Q – Do I need to deliver Human Factors Training in the workplace using EASA Part 147 organisation?

A – Human Factor (Part 66 Module 9) Train the trainer (PART 66 is only for certifying staffs) it is not for Managers, Production Controllers or Stores persons for example.

Module 9 may be delivered by an EASA Part 147 Training Organisation.

Human Factors May also be delivered by a 145 organisation directly or through a 145 subcontracted organisation for all maintenance personal including Part 66 Engineers. Please note that a licensed engineer who attends Module 9 HF training and subsequently joins an organisation will require Initial HF training in accordance with EASA 145.A.30

SAS offers a 4 day Human Factors Train the Trainer which is specifically designed to support organisations to deliver their own Human Factor Training.

24/ Q – I am wishing to take part in Ramp Safety Ground Ops Train the Trainer – Is it appropriate to attend the Human Factors TTT Course?

A/ Absolutely, not only is the HF TTT course most appropriate, you will be able to engage with your instructor on many levels concerning exposures within the Ramp Environment. Also consider that the fundamental attributes of a successful and effective Ramp Safety Instructor maybe found with the Maintenance Human Factors Skill Set. The satisfaction rate amongst Ground Handling & Ramp Staff attending Sofema TTT courses is very high.

25/ Q – Why do i see the same course available as a 1 day, 2 day, 3 day and 5 day? What is the difference?

A – For many our courses we offer a 1 day, 2 day, 3 day and 5 Day option – The difference is as follows:

The 1 day course is typically either delivered as an overview course, an essentials course or a genuine short course due to the subject material length, It is designed to cover all elements but due to time constraints the depth is appropriate for the time available.

The 2 ​or 3 ​Day courses ​are in more depth with more practical guidance regarding industry best practice and specific consideration of the challenges and effective solutions.

Where we offer a ​5 day course it is to allow work shop and group activities to aid the understanding of the subject, ​5 Day course can be particularly beneficial for example we consider subjects like ​SMS, Logistics or Quality Assurance where we can review ​all elements together with a detailed understanding of regulatory and organisational obligations to deliver system optimization.

26/ Q – What are the differences between SAS & Sofemaonline Training Courses and what is the availability of Hard and Soft Copy Training Material?

A – Many of our courses are available both as classroom courses delivered by Sofema Aviation Services Instructors and online through our training platform www.sofemaonline.com. This document provides notes concerning availability of Training Support and other Material related to www.sassofia.com and www.sofemaonline.com and printed copies of material.

27/ Q – Can Sofema Aviation Services or Sofemaonline provide a personal service to support my submission for an Aircraft Maintenance Engineers Licence, or engage with the regulatory authority on my behalf?

A – With literally 1000’s of clients it is simply not possible to provide a personal service. We try hard to support you in the best way possible to help you to understand the various requirements. ​ Please make sure you carry out a thorough online search of your questions before you contact us.
We try to offer general help to people who have tried and not been able to resolve or understand a particular issue. We undertake to answer or comment to all questions raised on our Linkedin Group “Sofemaonlinee User Forum” where we are pleased to share EASA Regulatory Questions.

28/ Q – What if I fail the Sofemaonline exam?

A – If you fail all your 3 attempts on the exam you will need to redo the training. Our policy is to provide you with the training again, with 50% discount. Please see here or contact us at online@sassofia.com

29/ Q – Concerning EASA Part 66 Module 9 & 10

A – Sofema Aviation Services together with our partner AETS holds regulatory approval BG.147.0005.
This approval is for type training in accordance with our capability -It does not allow us to issue Module 9 & Module 10 certificates required to obtain Part 66 Basic Licence.

However please note the following – Sofema Aviation Services offers Mod 9 Human Factors and Mod 10 Air Legislation as classroom training in support of 3rd Country Part 145 Workshop Certification Approval please refer to Foreign Part-145 approvals – Components, engines and APU certifying staff UG.CAO.00126-003.

In Accordance with the scope of the user guide the training is approved by the Quality Assurance Manager of the Receiving Organisation.

Sofema Online also offers Module 9 Human Factors & Module 10 Air Legislation for 2 purposes:
a) To Provide an online option equivalent to SAS Classroom training – again approved by the Quality Assurance Manager of the Receiving Organisation.
b) For study & review purposes in support of preparation for EASA Part 66 formal examinations.

30/ Q – What is the situation in respect of “Withholding Tax” regarding “Open” and “In Company” training?

A – In respect of “In Company” training it depends very much on the country in which the training is performed. There are double taxation agreements between Bulgaria (SAS is a BG registered entity registered for VAT in Bulgaria) and the Country of the Organisation for which we are delivering the training. This matter is dealt with within the Contract to deliver the training.
In respect of “Open Training” the training price (together with applicable discounts early bird or Multiple Delegate / Multiple Attendance) is the final price. Means if there are additional taxation issues they should be addressed by either the delegate or the delegates company. For open training SAS will not be responsible for any additional taxations issues.