Congestion demands change | SITA

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Congestion demands change

Published on  27 April by Nick Gates , Portfolio Director, Airport Solutions, SITA
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Many airports suffer from not seeing the bigger picture and lose critical minutes trying to co-ordinate all stakeholders during peak periods and disruption. But it doesn’t have to be this way and rising passenger numbers and increased airport congestion demand change.

Last month during Passenger Terminal Expo I had the opportunity to chat with many airport operators about their businesses and the challenges they face – some good and exciting opportunities really – others just, challenging. But the one thing that everyone agreed is that an integrated, non-siloed view of airport operations is the ideal.

Of course, this is nothing new, the benefits are clear and have been for many years. So that begs the questions - What has held airports back? Why do silos still exist at airports and why doesn’t everybody know what everyone else is doing and what everybody is planning to do?

As with everything in life, it can be easier said than done. The reality is with a multitude of stakeholders comes a multitude of processes, working environments and technology solutions. Airports are not alone, a lack of integration and information sharing can be seen in other industries like health and municipal transport.

Getting fully integrated can be particularly challenging for medium-sized and smaller airports. Finding the time and resources – and having the expertise – to do and do it right, and right the first time is not so easy. At SITA we have worked with many airports around the world to implement integrated control centers and know that the ideal is to have a complete solution, from a single expert supplier. This needs to include an integrated operational model in a single work environment for staff that has the technology to support all the different stakeholders needs.

There are three steps to getting the integrated view:

Step one - explore

It is vital to review processes across the airport, and while some review can be done internally, this is the time to call in the experts. You need airport operational experts to objectively review current processes and measure them against a wide view of industry best practices.

Step two - design

Now it’s time to put the design of the control center together. This should be based on the best-in-class standards taking all stakeholders into account. This is the time to get it right – remember it’s all in the design. (Think of the carpenter’s rule and “measure twice and cut once”)

Step three - implement

Here you need the skills of a team that has done this all before, that can provide a proven, well designed and flexible solution. A supplier that can provide the technology and infrastructure which will enable the smooth running of the airport control center in a cost-effective way.

Get great results

Getting it right can bring great results. Several of SITA’s airport customers are already enjoying the benefits of SITA Airport ControlBridge. Read about how we designed and delivered an integrated Airport Control Center at Dusseldorf Airport that now delivers record rates of recovery from disruption and which they considered a vital component of their A-CDM.

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