© 2017 by Pierce,Monroe & Associates, LLC 

Airport Builds Technology Roadmap For The Future

A large international airport develops a technology strategic plan to ensure an efficient, effective, and positive airport customer experience.

Client’s Challenge Plan for future technology acquisition and management in a complex environment

     

The airport industry is critical in today’s world. Millions of travelers utilize airport facilities annually and global companies depend on efficient transport of goods. Thousands are employed across the enterprise 24-7, 365 days per year. Airport staff, airlines, concessionaires, and service companies provide the necessary services to ensure smooth and uninterrupted service.

Airports must provide modern and efficient airport facilities to effectively support passengers and commerce. This can be challenging given changing passenger habits and lifestyles, airport technology trends, and an ever-changing regulatory environment. It is essential that airports strategically acquire and manage information technology assets to provide the services expected by today’s customers.

The technology department of a major international airport realized its responsibility in providing and managing the airport’s future technology needs. The airport had already modernized and expanded over the past two decades with new terminals and a runway, but continued growth was anticipated. A strategy was needed to ensure future success.

 

PM&A’s Solution Develop strategic plan to address technology support of business needs in the future

The decision was made to proceed with a technology strategic plan for the airport. It was critical that technology goals align with airport vision and business plans. Factors such as resources and skill sets required to execute were also important considerations.

PM&A was selected to prepare a strategic plan with a core focus on meeting the airport’s current and future technology needs and challenges. PM&A assembled a team of experts with expertise in strategic planning, technology, business operations, and finance/accounting.

 

  • The first step was to gain an understanding of the current state. Interviews were conducted with technical staff and business units across all airport divisions. It provided an understanding of business requirements, business specific technology trends, and cross-functional business processes.

  • Benchmark information regarding technology usage, budgets, staffing levels, and software utilization was obtained from information technology departments at similar sized airports across the U.S.

  • Airport industry trends were researched including airport technology, information technology, future regulations, supplier trends, and passenger lifestyles.

  • Detailed opportunities and strategies were identified, documented, and prioritized to shape specific project initiatives. They were sorted into four critical categories:

    • Policies/Processes/Procedures

    • Infrastructure

    • Application Systems

    • Human Resources

 

All business units were involved ensuring a shared understanding of the plan, which promoted business unit support.

Impact on Client’s Business Prepared for the future

The technology strategic plan provided a road map for all information technology related activities. It set the direction, established priorities, and provided an enterprise view shared by management and staff regarding future technologies impacting business departments. The enterprise approach promoted user buy-in to technology plan initiatives.

It also provided insight as to the staff resources that would be required, both technical and business related. 

Budgeting for technology was improved in that cost estimates can be provided for project timelines. This allowed project initiatives and expenditures to be planned over a 3-5 year time period.

The technology strategic plan also helped with managing technology assets from a life cycle management approach. It provided a framework for retiring assets and for acquiring the new state-of-the-art assets needed for providing quality customer service.