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Case study

The challenge

A leading European air hub needed to grow if it was to remain one of the world’s top 10 airports, even though it was already operating at 98% capacity. Unfortunately, increasing the number of flights, the total operating hours or the physical space weren’t options.

Senior management determined that by increasing efficiencies and responsiveness the hub could expand beyond handling 75 million passengers a year and 1,300 daily flights. New capabilities would be needed: better customer flow and demand predictions, faster reactions to flight delays and improved resource allocation. Goals included increasing productivity, cutting costs and enhancing the passenger experience.

Our approach

Cognizant proposed a digital platform that would transform the airport into the first truly intelligent air hub in the country. To make this vision a reality, Cognizant's transportation & logistics digital solutions experts investigated over 30 core business functions and gathered intelligence from the business ecosystem—including air traffic controllers, civil aviation authority personnel, baggage handlers and cleaners. We used this information to digitally model airport operations. 

During the process, we found that much of the data to accurately predict demand and improve planning was already being gathered, from either manual or a range of legacy systems. Cognizant acted as a systems integrator, consolidating this data and then developing a cloud-based platform using Microsoft Azure. We also integrated a decision support system to give management a 360-degree view of airport operations, flows and incidents. With real-time data availability, informed decisions can now be made based on up-to-the-second information and intelligence.

Digital platform provides foundation for future growth

A leading European airport needed to improve efficiency and customer satisfaction to retain its position as one of the world’s most successful air hubs. By integrating manual and legacy systems, Cognizant delivered a digital platform that predicts today’s demand in real time to minimize delays and maximize utilization while identifying future opportunities for additional improvements.

$4.5 million

savings per year due to increased efficiencies

40% increase

in peak check-in desk throughput

5% reduction

in passenger delays, equivalent to 4 minutes per passenger