Saturday, 20th April 2019


A flight operations manager works for an airline and is responsible for the planning and monitoring of their scheduled and chartered flights. They are usually based in an operations control centre from where they run the day-to-day operations of their airline, making sure that their flights run on time and managing the staffing and regulation of each flight.

Flight operations managers will help with the planning of flight destinations, times and schedules; ensuring that flights run cost-efficiently whilst also meeting customer demand. They must also ensure that flights are compliant with all relevant legislation. As part of their work they may also be involved in applying for flight and landing permits at airports around the world.

Flight operations managers must have good communication skills so that they can appropriately communicate and negotiate with ground services companies and authorities, to make sure that services such as refuelling, passenger support and baggage handling are available when required.

Individual responsibilities will vary with different employers, but general tasks may include:

  • Dealing with serious issues that affect the airline such as air traffic control problems and adverse weather conditions
  • Rearranging flight slots when delays happen
  • Communicating with aircraft personnel to make sure that the flight runs on time
  • Overseeing the maintenance of aircraft, ensuring that every flight has the right type of plane
  • Arranging for aircraft to undergo maintenance and repair with engineers
  • Managing the staffing of each flight with appropriately qualified cabin crew and captains

Flight operations managers have to make decisions very quickly, ensuring that the commercial performance of the company remains up to standard, whilst also taking the safety of passengers into consideration. Flight operations managers will also have daily meetings with staff each day to discuss issues, oversee all major operational decisions and devise solutions to problems that arise. They need to make sure that they keep air traffic control informed and comply with the standards set by the airport authorities.