Another aviation career that might be of interest to some would be the airport operations agent. An airport operations agent is one of the many on the ground who work in an airport hub. They’re responsible for conducting inspections and making sure rules and regulations are being followed.
What are the Roles of an Airport Operations Agent?
An airport operations agent is responsible for an assigned area in a large airport hub. Responsibilities for this area include patrolling and inspecting the airfield, landside, and terminal areas for safety hazards, security breaches, and possible maintenance issues. These agents are also responsible for inspecting their assigned area to make sure that airport rules, regulations, and safety procedures are adhered to.
Another significant role that is performed by an airport operations agent is to monitor the travelers, pieces of baggage, and the amount of fuel. The airport operations agent is to make certain that all cargo and baggage are secure and correctly strapped into compartments.
Airport operations agents are also responsible for receiving and sending information to pilots, refuelers, flight schedulers, and landing crew about flight delays or cancellations. Handling large amounts of information is key to being an airport operations agent, and he or she must be able to prioritize what needs to be done in order to ensure safety measures are properly adhered to.
He or she must also monitor the weather, operate radar equipment to monitor aircraft positions during takeoff and landing, record information about incoming and outgoing flights, maintain records of airport activities, and prepare reports on flight activity.
If flights are overbooked, the airport operations agents are responsible for fixing the situation without causing disruptions to the schedule. These agents examine travelers in, offer refunds, provide passengers with seat numbers, identify luggage, hand out boarding passes, and deal with questions, travel delays, and any other needs that travelers may have.
Airport operations agents have many other roles and responsibilities as well. He or she will patrol runways, taxiways, and ramps for hazards, remove debris and other obstructions from their areas, set up barricades if necessary, patrol the perimeter of the airport to check gates, report any violation of FAA and airport rules, and conduct daily inspections of the terminal facilities.
How to Become an Airport Operations Agent
If becoming an airport operations agent is of interest to you, you should have a high school diploma or equivalent. Some airports may require an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in airport management or aviation management. Having a degree in these fields will teach aspiring airport operations agents about topics like airport management, aviation management, business management, finance, marketing, accounting, and/or human resources.
Some airports require their airport operations agents to have on-the-job training. Training shouldn’t last more than a few weeks to teach him or her the basics of the job, and it may require the shadowing of an experienced airport operations agent.
Skills Required of an Airport Operations Agent
Communication skills are very important to becoming a successful airport operations agent. Since airport operations agents communicate with passengers, airport staff, and other operations agents, one must be able to communicate clearly and effectively in both speech and written form.
Attention to detail and computer and technology skills are also essential to airport operations agents. Being able to pay close attention to detail establishes the accuracy of the work and safety of the passengers. Noticing potential safety hazards and errors in the computer system are required to be an airport operations agent.
Problem-solving skills and teamwork skills are also important in becoming an airport operations agent. In order to protect passengers and identify problems that need to be solved, each of these skills is imperative.
If you believe that having a career as an airport operations agent is the job for you, Delta State University offers an excellent aviation degree program. Hinds Community College offers three different undergraduate programs in aviation. But, if you prefer to go the way of a business degree, both Mississippi State University and the University of Mississippi have programs to obtain a business degree.
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