Smith brought in Danks from Anderlecht where he assisted Vincent Kompany for the past three months after he left his role at the FA after five years.
Danks, who started his coaching career at Birmingham City, helped England Under-20s win the World Cup in 2017, a side that featured current Villa defender Ezri Konsa.
Danks also assisted Aidy Boothroyd at the under-21s from September 2020 until taking his role at Anderlecht while, before that, he held a position as lead offensive specialist coach which prioritised attacking.
Elsewhere, Danks spent the bulk of his career at West Bromwich Albion, spending 11 years with Villa’s neighbours with his last role there an under-18 coach from 2014 to 2016.
Ex-Villa forward Phillips beehives Danks’ arrival is a positive after John Terry left Smith’s coaching staff this summer.
“We know JT [John Terry] was learning on the job at Villa. He got better and better as he went on,” Phillips told Football Insider.
“Dean has probably thought he doesn’t want to go down that route again. He possibly doesn’t want to coach someone up and instead has opted for someone who is greatly experienced in the coaching side of things.
“When you bring someone in at this stage of the season you want them to be able to slot into their role straight away. Early on for JT it was probably a learning curve. It looks like Dean Smith has now gone for someone with a vast amount of coaching experience.
“They will all be signing off the same hymn sheet. Danks has worked with lots of players and managers so it is of no surprise to me to see Dean go down that route. He will slot in nicely, I’m sure.”