The airline industry is in a period of innovation and disruption. Legislation like EU PNR will make heavy demands on IT teams. Opportunities like IATA’s NDC require smarter use of data. And new purchasing options for travellers mean airlines have to up their game in every department.
The solid foundation for meeting these challenges is a robust data platform which can enable the airline to deal with passengers, partners and government agencies with equal agility.
Major airlines have already invested in PSS Passenger Service Systems like Amadeus Altea, Sabre or other solutions as the hub for their critical process management : pricing, availabilty, booking, ticketing etc . Now regional and low-cost airlines are feeling the same pressures to make their process management more homogeneous.
The big question is … where to start, and how to go about implementation?
Conztanz is a consulting firm who specialize in helping airlines of all size to generally improve their data management processes, and specifically to migrate to PSS.
This blog posts covers some of the key points about PSS migration, and finishes by offering a free questionnaire which airlines can use to ’self-assess’ their starting point for PSS migration.
Jean-Paul Camous is a R&D Director at Conztanz. He says that there are six critical factors that airlines face on their route to PSS implementation:
1. Adherence to the existing environment.
“The vital starting point is to map your current resources and how they will connect to the PSS application. This enables you to identify the interdependencies and manage them during the PSS migration.”
2. Define middleware and APIs.
“For each project element, define the communications between the PSS and the rest of the internal IT systems. At Conztanz we recommend a SOA Service Oriented Architecture as the way to interconnect the existing business processes to the PSS, rather than to be constraint to adapt them to the PSS processes. Also, as in step 1, it’s important to have an inventory and audit your APIs before embarking on the project.”
3. Be careful to maintain repositories.
“For airlines, their key repositories are: sales office list, seat map list (aircraft map) and ancillaries list (all items sold in complement of a fly ticket such as meal, upgrade, extra-luggage). PSS systems tend to be rigid, so airlines should pre-check that their repositories will be compatible and usable when choosing the new PSS.”
4. Analyse PSS impact on business processes.
“Airlines might be surprised to find that their current business processes can’t be migrated as they are to a new PSS solution. So the migration team need to identify the changes that will be required and their impact across the company. Sometimes that can lead to a cultural change.”
5. Agility and innovation capacities.
“It’s also important to look into the future and check that the PSS solution will fit with your corporate vision : will it enable new services that weren’t easily achieved under the current IT resources, and will it allow you to interconnect future internal or external add-ons connections? Correctly configured, a PSS system should be an engine for growth.” In short, assessing the PSS flexibility for evolution, is a key point.
6. Managing life cycles of software and/or platform PSS.
“Finally, it’s prudent for airlines to consider the PSS roadmap and lifecycle vision. Depending on PSS supplier timescales, aligning the PSS roadmap with the corporate vision will ensure you can develop the resources to meet long-term goals.”
In summarizing, Camous says: “The Conztanz PSS audit and implementation service covers all the above topics. By working with airlines to manage those six key points, we can help them to achieve a well managed and cost-effective PSS migration, and to leverage the maximum value from PSS once it is implemented.”
Coaching is another important part of the Conztanz offer. Camous adds: “Migrating to PSS isn’t all about technology. There is work to be done in changing business processes and engaging people with new practices. So we help with the human aspect of PSS migration by helping in the change management, defining the relevant organisation and process, delivering test tools and test campaigns, and by coaching and ‘training the trainers’ once the migration is done.”
As mentioned in the introduction, IT teams are already stretched. So the significant effort involved in PSS migration often becomes something on the wishlist that “we’ll think about next year”.
However, the Conztanz PSS Migration service makes implementing PSS achievable. In a nutshell:
– We’ve already done it for other companies.
– We help airlines plan logical project stages.
– We give practical technical support to achieve goals.
The most important part of any journey is knowing your starting point. So the Conztanz PSS Migration Team have created a guideline to help you on your journey. You can download it filling the form below.
Leave your details to download our PSS migration guideline