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Newsletter - July 2019

Published on: 19 July 2019

The Ramp of the Future – the Human factor

The ramp industry is in dire need of an overhaul, and technology may just be the answer

We all know today’s ramp afflictions and what causes them. One particularly bothersome problem is high employee turnover. It is time to harness the power of new technologies to solve this problem by investing in our employees and giving them the proper tools to succeed.

AI, Robots and VR– Investing in our employees

Ramp work may not be the most glamorous of jobs, but it is indispensable when it comes to running an airport. Tough working conditions, combined with poor training and low salaries have created an industry with a high turnover and low recruitment rate. However, with air traffic increasing each year, ramp employees are more important than ever. We must adapt by using new technologies to enhance the employee experience.

An immediate solution is to develop a company culture that leads to more loyalty. We are working towards this goal by spending more on facilities and welfare and trying to increase salaries whenever possible. However, this alone is not enough.

How can we fundamentally change the current, outdated, system?

The simple answer: Technology. There are many, many ways in which we can utilise existing (and future) technology to overhaul the system. For example, we can use AI in order to choose the right profile of individuals when hiring, augmented reality and headsets for more appropriate training sessions, robots to help with burdensome tasks and autonomous vehicles for a connected airport.

The next steps

Most of this technology is ready and waiting to be used. So, what are we waiting for? To address the issue, ASA is currently exploring ways to define a world training standard that should apply across the board, to enable workers to have a globally recognised training that not only increases mobility but workers' loyalty to their employer. We have already contacted a number of major companies and experts on the topic of training and plan to meet with experts in October at inter airport Europe exhibition to discuss. Obviously, this cannot be achieved overnight, but we are taking all the necessary steps to proceed with this as quickly as possible. As always, we welcome your input and feedback as ASA members on the issue.

Yours Sincerely,
Fabio Gamba

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