Computers and artificial intelligence have come along at an exponential rate over the past few decades, from being regarded as oversized adding machines to the point where they have played integral roles in some legitimately creative endeavours.
Queensland Airports Limited (QAL) says its new Wi-Fi and location analytics capabilities will help improve workflow management, reduce wait times and help it deliver targeted marketing campaigns to airport travellers.
Under an agreement, QAL has signed a three-year contract with Purple and its certified partner, Flexdata Solutions, a systems integrator based in Fortitude Valley, Queensland. Flexdata installed Cisco Meraki Wireless and Purple’s Wi-Fi solution at four airports owned and operated by QAL.
“By partnering with industry experts, QAL is able to deliver the best customer Wi-Fi experience in airports in Australia. In addition, through understanding key analytics, including dwell times, QAL can better understand and improve customer experience, particularly in customer and baggage collection areas,” according to Flexdata Solutions general manager, Troy Coker.
Customer feedback had indicated that fast and reliable Wi-Fi was a key requirement for customer satisfaction.
“The ability to deliver targeted marketing campaigns in real time via email and/or SMS, according to guest demographic, is also being explored,” Coker said.
Previously, QAL had an outsourced, managed Wi-Fi service through a local provider, but Wi-Fi analytics did not form part of that service. “It was impossible for QAL to get an understanding of footfall and data usage under that arrangement."
“Through location and presence data, QAL is able to understand a guest’s typical journey and dwell times as they move through the terminal. This information is particularly useful for management at airports in order to improve workflow management, reduce wait times in key zones, and position signage at optimal locations,” Coker added.
“The solution has also enabled QAL to distribute intelligent, targeted, marketing campaigns to airport travellers in real time, highlighting products, information and rewards that are relevant to the individual. This offers mutual benefits to the business and the customer.”
The jewel in the crown for QAL is Gold Coast Airport, which will be a central transport hub for the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Asked whether the implementation was done in preparation for the Commonwealth Games, the spokesperson said QAL were mindful of the upcoming event and the new terminal build underway.
“While the Purple investment was not tied directly to the Games, a solution with zero hardware, delivered 100 per cent from the cloud, allows QAL flexibility for growth moving forward.”
Purple’s cloud platform is being used by QAL is aimed at improving the customer experience in its terminals. Purple CEO, Gavin Wheeldon, said location analytics reports can show passenger queues and dwell times. The solution has also enabled the business to distribute intelligent, targeted, marketing campaigns to airport travellers in real time.
Wheeldon said the data Purple’s platform generates gives businesses providing guest Wi-Fi the opportunity to interact with their customers in real time, highlighting products, information and rewards that are relevant to that individual.
Asked about trends in aviation in terms of customer experience, Coker said airports are keen to maximise the stay of visitors and therefore the retail spend of all guests - even those simply dropping someone off at the airport.
“Having the ability to send a promotional coupon, such as two-for-one coffee deal, based on a guest’s location in the terminal will entice custom and make the experience more enjoyable. Messages can also be sent via email or SMS to advise guests of a flight status such as ‘delayed; go to gate; boarding now’, so guests experience reduced anxiety and can stay within the retail areas for as long as possible.
"To improve customer experience, it is also important to provide queue-length metrics to airline check-in or immigration booth managers. This enables them to make real-time decisions about how many booths need to be open at any point in time to deliver the best service to travellers.
“The data available from Purple’s solution makes all of the above actions possible. Purple makes its API open to customers for them to build out additional functionality, according to their requirements, as they see fit.”