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A MAGAZINE FOR AIRLINE EXECUTIVES

Ta k i n g

y o u r

a i r l i n e

OCTOBER 2003

t o

n e w

h e i g h t s

EXTREME AIRLINE MANAGEMENT

A conversation with …

David Siegel, CEO, US Airways INSIDE

Traditional carriers launch low-fare subsidiaries

How airlines weathered "the perfect storm"

Cathay Pacific Airways’ crisis management process

© 2009 Sabre Inc. All rights reserved.

wearelistening@sabre.com


regional As part of its initiative to increase customer service, Gulf Air, the flag carrier of Bahrain, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, has consolidated its reservations activities into a single call center.

the center opened, the “ Before airline’s reservations operations

Photo courtesy of Gulf Air

were scattered across more than 50 separate locations, many of which were too small to justify the deployment of sophisticated technology.

verse with the reservations staff and

comfortable, whether telephone, e-mail,

enable the call to be directed to a

Web chat or SMS. The airline anticipates

suitably qualified representative

that the bulk of contacts will be made

according to the nature of the call.

by telephone during the first few years

The mobile services also dynamically

of operation, although it anticipates

monitor all transactions, including

other forms will eventually become

recording of all calls, to facilitate

more prominent. The contact center will support

processes and automate manual

Computer telephony integration

Gulf Air, Gulf Traveler (the all-economy,

tasks. The system is the industry’s

enables the contact center system to

full-service subdivision of Gulf Air),

only fully integrated solution designed

recognize the customer’s telephone

Gulf Air Holidays, the frequent flyer

to support every passenger interaction

number and populate the reservations

program and customer relations

from shopping for preferred itineraries

agents’ computer screens with cus-

with specialists also handling travel

to the post-travel experience.

tomer-specific data (name, address,

agency queries, baggage inquiries

The Sabre Qik ™ business processing

service preferences) to speed up

and staff travel.

solutions dramatically simplify the

call processing time and enable per-

reservations call process and enable

sonalized service.

and with less training through the

By Raida Abumaizar and Tariq Sultan | Ascend Contributors

by the method with which they are most

measurement of service quality.

agents to operate more productively

Gulf Air opens a new US$40 million call center that will help its customers stay in better contact with the carrier.

language in which they wish to con-

call center channel, streamline

®

Looking Through the “Contact” Lens

Europe, Middle East and Africa

The center’s flexible technology can also be adapted and sized to suit

The new center reflects Gulf Air’s business goals and will enable the airline to provide the world-class customer service expected of a modern

elimination of lengthy keystrokes and

world-class airline. The center is part

format memorization. The real-time

of Gulf Air’s Project Falcon, a three-year

graphical user interface provides

strategic recovery program designed

seamless and simultaneous access to

to revitalize the airline and help it build

data from computerized reservations

on its cultural strengths, history and

systems, the Internet, external data-

strategic partnerships.

bases, telephone and voice recognition

“We are on target with our Project

systems, and facsimile machines.

Falcon recovery to meet our year-end

Mobile services available from Sabre

changing market circumstances with

targets,” said James Hogan, president

Airline Solutions provide an automated

new products and services.

and chief executive of Gulf Air. “Focusing

voice response system that generates

The IP Contact Center leverages

on our objective to be a commercially

cost efficiency for the call center. Gulf

voice-over IP technology and offers

successful, world-class airline, this

ulf Air, the premier pan-Persian

G

technological solutions available for

were scattered across more than 50

currently uses the mobile services

great flexibility in services and in number

bold and disciplined process of change

Gulf carrier owned by the countries

telecommunications and reservations

separate locations, many of which were

for short messaging service and plans

of agents deployed. The solution enables

will continue.”

of Bahrain, Oman and United Arab

service; our staff are enthusiastic and

too small to justify the deployment of

to use voice-over Internet protocol

agents to dynamically connect and work

Emirates, last month opened a US$40

raring to go. Our customers will be

sophisticated technology.

telephony to route calls from around

from any location while providing a

Raida Abumaizar is the Bahrain-based

million World Wide Contact Center,

both surprised and delighted.”

the world into the contact center.

seamless customer experience and

account director for Gulf Air.

quality of service.

which will consolidate all its reservations

By bringing together these opera-

In developing the center, Gulf Air has teamed with leading technology

Interactive voice response, such as

activities, including bookings, ticketing

tions, the airline will be able to centralize

providers, including Public

that provided by the mobile services,

and customer service. Airline officials

the management of its customer rela-

Establishment for Industrial Estates —

enables customers to pre-select the

anticipate that the center will also

tionships, helping the carrier reach

Oman, Omantel, Cisco, Hewlett-Packard

improve sales and customer service.

its goal of becoming more customer-

and Equant. In addition, the center

centric. When fully staffed, the new

also uses several tools from Sabre

head of reservations for Gulf Air, “This

center, located in Muscat, Oman, will

Airline Solutions:

1,266 — Elevation, in feet below

14,219 — Elevation,

new venture will give us the opportunity

employ more than 300 local residents

The Sabre ® Passenger Reservation

sea level, of the I Bar Yehuda Airport

in feet above sea level, of the

to offer all of our customers worldwide

as well as the latest communications

System provides a comprehensive

in Israel, one of the world’s lowest alti-

airport in Bangda, Tibet, one

a consistent, world-class service, around

technology. Before the center opened,

and easy-to-use product suite that

tude airports.

of the world’s highest altitude

the clock. We are using the very best

the airline’s reservations operations

will help increase sales through the

According to Andrew Dawson,

70 ascend

+count it up

The center’s design and technology enable customers to contact the airline

Tariq Sultan is vice president of information technology for Gulf Air.

commercial airports.


regional As part of its initiative to increase customer service, Gulf Air, the flag carrier of Bahrain, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, has consolidated its reservations activities into a single call center.

the center opened, the “ Before airline’s reservations operations

Photo courtesy of Gulf Air

were scattered across more than 50 separate locations, many of which were too small to justify the deployment of sophisticated technology.

verse with the reservations staff and

comfortable, whether telephone, e-mail,

enable the call to be directed to a

Web chat or SMS. The airline anticipates

suitably qualified representative

that the bulk of contacts will be made

according to the nature of the call.

by telephone during the first few years

The mobile services also dynamically

of operation, although it anticipates

monitor all transactions, including

other forms will eventually become

recording of all calls, to facilitate

more prominent. The contact center will support

processes and automate manual

Computer telephony integration

Gulf Air, Gulf Traveler (the all-economy,

tasks. The system is the industry’s

enables the contact center system to

full-service subdivision of Gulf Air),

only fully integrated solution designed

recognize the customer’s telephone

Gulf Air Holidays, the frequent flyer

to support every passenger interaction

number and populate the reservations

program and customer relations

from shopping for preferred itineraries

agents’ computer screens with cus-

with specialists also handling travel

to the post-travel experience.

tomer-specific data (name, address,

agency queries, baggage inquiries

The Sabre Qik ™ business processing

service preferences) to speed up

and staff travel.

solutions dramatically simplify the

call processing time and enable per-

reservations call process and enable

sonalized service.

and with less training through the

By Raida Abumaizar and Tariq Sultan | Ascend Contributors

by the method with which they are most

measurement of service quality.

agents to operate more productively

Gulf Air opens a new US$40 million call center that will help its customers stay in better contact with the carrier.

language in which they wish to con-

call center channel, streamline

®

Looking Through the “Contact” Lens

Europe, Middle East and Africa

The center’s flexible technology can also be adapted and sized to suit

The new center reflects Gulf Air’s business goals and will enable the airline to provide the world-class customer service expected of a modern

elimination of lengthy keystrokes and

world-class airline. The center is part

format memorization. The real-time

of Gulf Air’s Project Falcon, a three-year

graphical user interface provides

strategic recovery program designed

seamless and simultaneous access to

to revitalize the airline and help it build

data from computerized reservations

on its cultural strengths, history and

systems, the Internet, external data-

strategic partnerships.

bases, telephone and voice recognition

“We are on target with our Project

systems, and facsimile machines.

Falcon recovery to meet our year-end

Mobile services available from Sabre

changing market circumstances with

targets,” said James Hogan, president

Airline Solutions provide an automated

new products and services.

and chief executive of Gulf Air. “Focusing

voice response system that generates

The IP Contact Center leverages

on our objective to be a commercially

cost efficiency for the call center. Gulf

voice-over IP technology and offers

successful, world-class airline, this

ulf Air, the premier pan-Persian

G

technological solutions available for

were scattered across more than 50

currently uses the mobile services

great flexibility in services and in number

bold and disciplined process of change

Gulf carrier owned by the countries

telecommunications and reservations

separate locations, many of which were

for short messaging service and plans

of agents deployed. The solution enables

will continue.”

of Bahrain, Oman and United Arab

service; our staff are enthusiastic and

too small to justify the deployment of

to use voice-over Internet protocol

agents to dynamically connect and work

Emirates, last month opened a US$40

raring to go. Our customers will be

sophisticated technology.

telephony to route calls from around

from any location while providing a

Raida Abumaizar is the Bahrain-based

million World Wide Contact Center,

both surprised and delighted.”

the world into the contact center.

seamless customer experience and

account director for Gulf Air.

quality of service.

which will consolidate all its reservations

By bringing together these opera-

In developing the center, Gulf Air has teamed with leading technology

Interactive voice response, such as

activities, including bookings, ticketing

tions, the airline will be able to centralize

providers, including Public

that provided by the mobile services,

and customer service. Airline officials

the management of its customer rela-

Establishment for Industrial Estates —

enables customers to pre-select the

anticipate that the center will also

tionships, helping the carrier reach

Oman, Omantel, Cisco, Hewlett-Packard

improve sales and customer service.

its goal of becoming more customer-

and Equant. In addition, the center

centric. When fully staffed, the new

also uses several tools from Sabre

head of reservations for Gulf Air, “This

center, located in Muscat, Oman, will

Airline Solutions:

1,266 — Elevation, in feet below

14,219 — Elevation,

new venture will give us the opportunity

employ more than 300 local residents

The Sabre ® Passenger Reservation

sea level, of the I Bar Yehuda Airport

in feet above sea level, of the

to offer all of our customers worldwide

as well as the latest communications

System provides a comprehensive

in Israel, one of the world’s lowest alti-

airport in Bangda, Tibet, one

a consistent, world-class service, around

technology. Before the center opened,

and easy-to-use product suite that

tude airports.

of the world’s highest altitude

the clock. We are using the very best

the airline’s reservations operations

will help increase sales through the

According to Andrew Dawson,

70 ascend

+count it up

The center’s design and technology enable customers to contact the airline

Tariq Sultan is vice president of information technology for Gulf Air.

commercial airports.


LookingThroughTheContactLens_OCT_2003