SARM, HARM track pilot qualifications
By Senior Airman Destinee Sweeney, 20th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
/ Published January 22, 2018
SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. -- It takes an army to get aircraft off the ground -- or rather, an air force. When an F-16CM Fighting Falcon pilot taxis down the flightline in preparation for a sortie, it may seem that the weight of success lies on their shoulders.
Although their knowledge and skills are important, they did not reach this point alone. Before this could happen, individuals from various career fields had to do their part to ensure the aviator is qualified and safe to fly, including one such as Senior Airman Jeffrey Williams, 79th Fighter Squadron squadron aviation resource management (SARM) journeyman.
“Every day we have to check what we call ‘go/no-gos,’ basically a list of events they have to accomplish before they step to the jets,” Williams said. “Once they get to the jets, they crank them up and pass us any ‘red balls,’ which is anything that is going wrong with the jet, and we pass it to maintenance and send them out to the pilot’s parking location.”
SARMs are also responsible for logging each pilot’s training and tracking when it needs to be completed.
“If we don’t input the pilot’s training or keep track of it when they come to step to fly, they can’t step,” said Williams.
However, before pilots can get the “good to go” from the SARM, they must first in-process their records with the 20th Operations Support Squadron host aviation resource management (HARM) office.
“We maintain all the records for all the aircrew members on this base -- their flight record folders,” said Staff Sgt. Claudia Fox, 20th OSS HARM noncommissioned officer in charge. “It’s pretty much a folder of their career.”
HARMs are responsible for in- and out-processing aircrew members and maintaining records such as flight physicals, flying hours, training requirements, aeronautical orders and special pay data for the aircrew member’s entire career to ensure pilots are mission-ready and safe to fly.
When the pilot takes off, they put their faith in the competence of their wingmen, who prepare them for whatever they may face in the wild blue yonder.