Over the last 21 months, we, like many other businesses, have had to make some tough decisions about how we were going to run our business in the ever-evolving pandemic world. One word was critical to any success we hoped to achieve: Community. As we complete the second year in a row that most people will be only too happy to see the back of, we are assured that our endeavours have paid off, as our industry remains connected and united in learning, knowledge, and progression.

2021 was one of continued uncertainty but it did allow some recovery from the chaos of 2020. Through the support of a global network of committed and passionate people, we continued to ensure that our community thrived, mechanized through a series of virtual and live events, free-flowing information, and, most importantly, through keeping channels of communication open across our global community. The result was the CAT Leader Forum, Heads of Training collaborations, WATS and EATS, an EASA Immersive Technologies partnership, interviews with industry leaders and more. Our industry partners remain firm supporters of Halldale, for which we are thankful, and as we approach 2022, we look forward to continued engagement with them at our events and through our digital channels.

Running our live events programme during 2021 threw some challenges, but both WATS and EATS were tremendously rewarding and reaffirmed that, for our airline training community ‘live events’ are the only way to go. The enthusiasm of attendees was ample reward and the amount of business discussed confirmed the urgent need to meet and move the industry forward.  Despite the challenges, we welcomed delegates from across the world, offered full speaker conference programmes and held sold out trade shows.  We should be proud that our industry perseveres in the face of adversity, a strong and driven community. 

2022 will see us run WATS and EATS and see a welcome return of APATS to Singapore in late August; our event theme for 2022 is ‘Enabling the world airline industry' and the role of the training community in doing that is obvious.

Early December saw another welcome return, this time of the I/ITSEC event, the world’s leading defence training and simulation event and the place with more simulation technology per square metre than any! 

I/ITSEC confirmed the rapid development of games engines as training tools, the same in head-mounted displays and ongoing developments in the cloud, metaverse, AI, and the full panoply of tech that the wider training community is waiting for. With 5 and 6G also approaching, if not with us, 2022 could well be a year of change, and a possible inflection point. We are looking forward to working even more closely with our technical partners next year, bringing new innovations to the fore, to be shared across our communities.

Through all of this, our news and website teams have been pumping out daily content keeping the Safety Critical Training world up to date and in touch with latest developments and our content team, with massive support from training leaders, has completed five working groups and webinars on Big Data, XR Tech, EBT, UPRT and Skills Fade, all focused more on how to deal with the subjects i.e. a practical, not theoretical approach. Provoking discussions with world leaders in both the aviation and defense space has also offered insight and ideas into the present and future of our industries - our Halldale website has a world-class catalogue of information if you have some time over Christmas for a spot of reading!

We are grateful to have had the opportunity and flexibility to share the positives, aware that for many the business cost has been high and they are still not close to being anything approaching normal. We wish them well and will continue to support our industry as we navigate through the next 12 months.  

On a personal level, for those who have suffered as a result of the pandemic we send our very best wishes as well as the hope that they too can enjoy the coming holidays.

2022 is going to be a fascinating year and we hope you will join us, online and in-person!