PRINTED CIRCUIT: Emerging technologies can win the hearts of travelers


    By Adrian Johnston

    Last of two parts

    MAPPING a win-win scenario for airlines and passengers with AI. Despite rising passenger numbers, airlines are struggling to keep up amidst fierce competition, persistent cost pressures and further volatility in oil and currency markets. Both full-service and budget airlines in the region need to act strategically to survive – they face two-fold pressures of controlling costs and providing unparalleled travel perks like more leg room and free in-flight WiFi.

    With emerging technologies, airlines can bridge business and customer demands by streamlining finance and procurement operations and reallocating resources to provide passengers like Jasmine with more experiential offerings. In the longer run, this optimization cuts costs and obtains better operational insights for airlines to address potential issues and adopt ways to better serve their customers.

    Japan’s largest carrier All Nippon Airways (ANA), for example, implemented Oracle ERP Cloud to streamline how it approves invoices and manages its suppliers through automation and social collaboration. The new cloud solution helps reduce risks and costs of all procurement processes and time spent on administrative tasks, so the airline’s employees can focus more on their customers.

    A leading regional low cost airline AirAsia also deployed Oracle ERP Cloud to reduce operating costs and predict the profitability of competitive decisions, such as raising or lowering fares and opening new routes. Moving to the cloud has given AirAsia a better handle on inventory so that travellers like Jasmine can pick from the best selection of in-flight food and beverages as well as duty-free goods.

    Streamline airport operations and boost staff efficiency. As air travel continues to surge across the region, airport operators are seizing the opportunity to expand operations. To support this growth, airports need well-trained staff in the right positions who can readily access training to optimally maintain airport operations during busy travel periods.
    Kansai Airports is also keeping up with this influx. To cope with new, additional flight routes from Korea and China and expanding South-East Asian networks, Kansai Airports has embraced Oracle HCM Cloud to consolidate human resource information for quick decisions in training and staff deployment. With human capital management tools on the cloud, they can now conduct end-to-end recruiting, streamline on boarding for new employees and able to maintain optimal staffing for continuous business growth, providing visitors with reliable service and lasting positive impressions.

    Cloud provides uplift to traveler experience. The sky’s the limit for growth across the hospitality industry, as the Asia Pacific region will see a record high of almost 900 million international visitor arrivals by 2023 and contribute more than 42 percent of all international air travelers by 2040.

    All players in the hospitality industry – from travel planning websites to accommodation services – must capitalize the cloud to gain easy access to emerging technology services to improve operational efficiencies, automate processes, lower operating costs and ultimately woo the hearts of discerning travelers like Jasmine.

    (Author is Senior Vice President of Cloud Applications (SaaS), Japan and Asia Pacific, Oracle.)