When do you use an aircraft maintenance engineers’ logbook?
The aircraft maintenance engineers’ logbook has been around for years, but in what ways do the engineers’ use their logbooks?
There are still some engineers, technicians and mechanics working in aviation maintenance that do not regularly update and maintain a record of their aircraft maintenance experience. There are some that don’t even own a logbook. Why?
Some of these maintenance personnel work for companies whose quality departments issue company approvals after the engineer sits a technical board. Other engineers work for companies who use an internal computerised system that can generate a list of the engineers technical log entries on request, AMOS for example. A disadvantage of only relying on these systems is that the personal record is less portable and the data entries cannot be personalised into presentations. They also have to be printed and filed which introduces its own problems of storage; they could get damaged or lost, and it is not environmentally friendly in the 21st century to keep reams and reams of paper.
So how do the aircraft maintenance engineers that own a logbook update theirs? Our research shows that aircraft maintenance engineers update their logbooks in four different ways.
The first are the aircraft maintenance engineers who update their logbooks every couple of years. This is usually when they have to as a company approval or maintenance licence is due for renewal. The problem of using a logbook this way is that the engineer usually has to trawl though mountains of paperwork records trying to find copies of technical logs or job cards that match with an approval number. These records can often run over two years or more. But how does he find the ATA specific entries? What about that rare component change and when exactly was this? What about all the troubleshooting?
All this usually ends up, after countless hours, with a pile of paperwork that requires counter-signatures by supervisors and line managers who then have to review and compare shift plans and technical logs / job cards.
The next way an aircraft maintenance engineers’ logbook is used is for the recording of on-the-job training (OJT) in preparation for an application for a new aircraft type rating. This can be a record of specific aircraft type related tasks that maybe component location; functional test; servicing; removal / installation. Some quality departments provide printed sheets of tasks required, but again this brings back the amount of paperwork that is generated and postage costs too in many cases.
Another and a lot better way of maintaining an aircraft maintenance engineer’s logbook is to update every few weeks or couple of months using quite or down time to review recent daily work records or shift hand-overs; And in doing so keeping on top of the recent tasks.
From experience though we have found that updating a personal logbook is best carried out as soon as possible after the job / task / CRS has been signed and completed. Many engineers now have to enter technical logs or work-orders into a company database soon after the task has been completed. Taking just a minute longer to update the aircraft maintenance engineer’s logbook there and then will save hours later on.
And if you don’t have to enter the task details into a company database, why not take a photo of the paperwork with a smart phone or tablet and update your logbook during your next coffee break?
www.aviationlogbook.eu provides you with the tools that make the up keeping of an aircraft maintenance personal logbook as simple as possible.