Air India, India’s top airline and a Star Alliance member on monday announced significant success in its efforts to modernise its digital systems landscape, with many initiatives already finished and several more in advanced stages of completion.
Air India has set its sights on becoming the world’s foremost technologically advanced airline, and has taken substantial steps towards achieving that goal.
Air India is making significant investments in establishing a state-of-the-art digital and technology team, which will have a strong presence in Kochi and Gurugram in India, as well as in Silicon Valley in the United States. The renowned Tata Group Chairman, Mr. Natarajan Chandrasekaran, and Air India CEO, Mr. Campbell Wilson, are leading the effort to modernize the airline’s digital and technology operations.
Here some of the major areas where Air India has already implemented new technology systems or is nearing implementation:
Modernization of websites and mobile apps, user-friendly customer notification systems, chatbots powered by ChatGPT, modernization of in-flight entertainment systems,digital marketing, modernization of contact centres, customer service portals with real-time tracking of customer support requests,, disruption management and self-service reaccommodation, and customer feedback and analysis are some of the services offered.
Modern, secure digital workplace tools, employee engagement and self-service portals, mobile devices for pilots, flight attendants, and airport operations staff, learning and development tools, automated crew pairing and rostering, crew management, and crew disruption management, paperless transactions via digitization, and electronic contracts.
Modern passenger service system, departure control, sales, engineering management, flight planning and tracking, aircraft movement and disruption management, turnaround management, fuel management and sustainability, safety management, and reporting systems.
Enterprise systems transformation:
Modernization of the fundamental Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, transfer to the cloud, procurement, materials management, and digital infrastructure.
A key focus is on implementing common systems across both the full-service and low-cost segments, leveraging economies-of-scale and economies-of-learning across all the group airlines. This approach is driven by the use of common platforms and a world-class team that works collaboratively across the group airlines.
“We are on a mission to delight our customers and create a sustainable competitive advantage in our operations by adopting the world’s best in digital technologies. The scope of the technology transformation at Air India is extensive and covers every aspect of the airline including commercial, engineering, operations, ground handling, finance, human resources, and corporate functions. We are empowering employees across the company, ranging from our frontline flying staff to ground crew with the best technology capabilities to help them excel at their jobs. We are adopting a cloud-only, mobile-friendly, design-rich, AI-infused, digital-first approach to all our technology initiatives that we are executing with speed,” said Satya Ramaswamy, Air India’s Chief Digital and Technology Officer.
According to a Press release, Air India’s Vihaan.AI transformation program aims to leverage digital technologies as a crucial differentiator, with the aspiration to become a leader in the industry of technology. Virtually every initiative under Vihaan.AI is driven by cutting-edge technology, ranging from customer experience enhancement to revolutionary revenue management transformation.
The airline has already spent over $200 million on new digital systems, technical services, and hiring personnel that are at the forefront of the digital business. It anticipates maintaining this investment pace over the next five years as it transitions from catching up to top-tier airlines to assuming leadership by implementing the most advanced technologies, which range from conventional digital technologies to contemporary generative Artificial Intelligence (AI).
The objective is to fundamentally change customer engagement and greatly increase operational efficiencies. With an eye towards long-term leadership, Air India is also investigating new trends, such as the use of quantum computing to address some of the most difficult optimisation problems in the market.
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