Attitudes towards Artificial Intelligence
Breaking down the mindset barriers holding back the widespread deployment of Artificial Intelligence-driven solutions requires nurturing a high-performance team from the start. Clear communication and reassurance across IT and business teams, defining common KPIs and goals focused on agility, accuracy, and performance. Businesses need to make clear to all employees that, far from replacing the human workforce, AI is simply changing people’s jobs for the better through intelligent automation, helping teams reduce repetitive administrative tasks in favor of more strategic decision-making and enhancing their ability to make better decisions and drive business performance.
Similarly, senior business leaders must commit to ensuring the right alignment between business use cases and the latest AI techniques to unlock new levels of performance. Equally, they must understand the roles they have to play in setting a company culture in which their organization seizes new opportunities, experiments with new technologies, and is not afraid of taking risks.
AI has the power to transform airline operations, unlocking new levels of data insight that can enhance profitability and the customer experience while enabling airline industry analysts to turbocharge their effectiveness, giving commercial teams that harness it a major edge over the competition.
When it comes to realizing this potential, however, the travel industry is still on a journey.
To realize the full power of AI, early adopters across industries have already realized – and demonstrated – the significant business benefits the technology can deliver.
Businesses that have remained reliant on legacy technologies now find themselves desperately playing catch up, prompting a surge of investment into AI-based solutions. According to a September 2022 article by Simple Flying, 82% of airlines are now looking to invest in AI.
While it will take work, industry mindsets can be shifted toward digital-first practices for commercial decision making. Let’s explore the steps that will enable this to happen and the opportunities around pricing and revenue management this could offer the aviation sector.
AI barriers for business stakeholders
There are certain mindsets that exist across the travel landscape that may hold back the industry’s adoption of AI.
Fear of the unknown, or the dreaded “black box” idea, makes some hesitant to adopt technology they cannot fully understand. If the analyst or manager cannot see the calculations being run, how do they know they’re correct? A lack of trust in the science behind AI can cause hesitancy to adopt new technology.
Employees must also be reassured that AI technology is not a stepping stone to replacing their roles, while those with extensive experience with legacy systems can often be reluctant to embrace new and unfamiliar business technology solutions.
Businesses can also face challenges around the lack of usable data and support infrastructure, and accessing valuable knowledge and skills can also prove challenging.
How to realize potential
Breaking through these potential obstacles requires clear and consistent communication and buy-in across all levels of the organization. Analysts should be reassured that, rather than replacing their jobs, AI will enhance them by allowing them to automate time-consuming and repetitive tasks, freeing them up to focus on better decision making on key flights and routes. Analysts will be able to work with AI to act on information beyond the recorded data, such as upcoming schedule changes, new routes, or competitive opportunities. Technology still requires human insight to adopt and fine-tune strategies.
Senior leaders must commit to understanding how the new solutions can unlock greater optimization across the business and create a culture of experimentation and data-driven decision-making. Organizations must be willing to try AI on a small scale and gradually increase its adoption, instead of using a big-bang approach.
It’s also important for companies to redouble their efforts to gather clean data. Maximizing productivity and unlocking new insights relies heavily on having reliable, decision-influencing data readily available, and business leaders must foster this data-gathering capability in their organizations.
Aviation industry opportunities
These shifts can unlock huge opportunities for the aviation industry. The adoption of AI-driven solutions can prove critical to maximizing overall revenue, boosting commercial performance, and – perhaps most importantly of all – improving the customer experience.
The aviation sector has historically been held back by the limitations of legacy systems, which have merely enabled analysts to look for year-on-year patterns. The problem with this, especially in today’s volatile travel environment, is that there simply isn’t enough data on a specific flight at a given point in time to support accurate forecasting in a volatile environment.
AI-driven solutions overcome this problem thanks to technological advances like Deep Learning. These algorithms, trained by sifting through vast amounts of historical and contextual data – including bookings, searches, events, promotions, and competitor prices – enable forecasts which aid in truly informed decision-making. Commercial systems, powered by Deep Learning technology, allow airline teams to finally realize total revenue optimization – maximizing all sources of revenue to the airline.
FLYR is dedicated to generating win-win situations in which airlines become more profitable across fares, cargo, ancillaries, offer and order management, and retailing, while customers enjoy a superior experience. Moreover, with AI-powered commercial decision-making capabilities in The Revenue Operating System®, airlines can provide more personalization through every stage of the customer journey. Equipped with high accuracy and dynamic load and revenue forecasts, airlines are better able to direct marketing spend and energy toward higher-yielding results and adapt to the ever-increasing velocity of change to more quickly accommodate customers’ needs.
To learn more about how FLYR Labs is bringing AI to the travel industry, check us out.
Article by Christian Merkwirth, Technical Product Owner, Lead AI Scientist, FLYR