Strengthening the airport value proposition by harnessing digital transformation

Alexander Michael

Director of Consulting, Digital Transformation at Frost & Sullivan

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Today, digital transformation is a priority for airports, as well as many other organisations. The challenge is to define what digital transformation means in the airport environment. So often a buzzword, or a catch-all term for everything related to technology, airports must embrace its potential to change how they do things.



For our recent report commissioned by Amadeus, Strengthening the Airport Value Proposition, we interviewed senior executives from airports, airlines and industry experts to uncover how airports can make modern technology a differentiator and build value for themselves, airlines, and for passengers.

The proliferation of IT systems, and a lack of data, is endemic in many airport environments today. However, investment in airport IT offers the potential to sweep away many of the current constraints fragmented systems.

The common thread that unites all airport operators regardless of size, geography or model is the need to modernise, attract traffic, improve operational efficiency and enhance the passenger experience. The key component in delivering on each of these is technology, but also management vision. Despite this, airport value propositions regularly neglect the fact that IT can facilitate significant benefit across each of these key areas.

The report outlines a range of recommendations airports to make digital transformation a differentiator that unlocks new revenues:

  • Make IT a strategic imperative and differentiate to compete harder: Greater competition from other airports makes it ineffective for airports to incentivise solely on costs. But this research identifies a strong correlation between IT investment, airline ground performance and passenger experience.
  • Quantify and communicate the value that IT brings to your airline customers:

    Airports could do much more to communicate their perceived value to airlines. They should demonstrate that their charges are justified because their IT drives cost efficiencies to airlines in other fronts.


  • The passenger is the ultimate customer: Airports are becoming increasingly connected, but a passenger’s experience can be tainted by a poor airport experience. Technology can give greater control to an airport over a passenger’s overall journey


An IT-centric value proposition can create real benefits not only for the airport, airlines, and other airport stakeholders but also the passenger and the industry as a whole. For more insights, we invite you to the full Strengthening the Airport Value Proposition report here.