Training is a powerful airport staff empowerment tool

John Webster by John Webster | Jan 1, 2018

ACI World recognizes that through the professional development of employees Members are capable of achieving  and maintaining professional excellence through achieving their own organizational goals.

As such, one of the main objectives of any organization is to build and nurture job satisfaction among its staff. Generally, through employee empowerment, promoting teamwork and investing in employee training, these objectives have a significant impact  on job satisfaction, which then translates to better service and customer experience for the end user, and in this case, the travelling public.

Outlined below are ways in which airport organizations can help empower their staff through the use of training and development:

Keep up with current standards and prepare for implementation of best, recommended practices

As the airport landscape continually evolves, ACI World provides training solutions updated to accurately reflect the latest changes within the ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPS) and associated guidance materials. This practice ensures that all staff are aware of applicable regulations and have the required competencies to be effective and efficient within their roles. Global Training  programmes are guided by the needs of member airports and their staff ensuring best practices are followed. Some examples include:

  • Managing Aerodrome Works
  • Aeronautical Studies and Risk Analysis
  • Airport Safety Management Systems (SMS) Implementation

Being able to identify gaps and weakness in your processes and procedures

A skilled workforce is able to quickly identify any potential gaps and deficiencies within their operational sphere and take the necessary preventative measures, if required. Similarly, this skilled workforce can identify areas for increased efficiency and to create additional value for an organization. In addition to the training programmes that ACI World provides, they have developed the Airport Excellence (APEX) Programmes, which currently includes APEX in Safety and APEX in Security. APEX Programmes combine the mandate for regulatory compliance with day-to-day operational needs to maximize operational efficiency and safety and/or security standards. As such, as an airport peer review programme, it also has the benefit of helping to identify areas for which staff can benefit for targeted training programmes to enhance or develop competencies to fill any identified gaps or weaknesses.

Attain a competitive advantage

Given the many choices of destinations that the travelling public is offered, member airports must find innovative and creative ways in providing a unique selling point to attract new markets while retaining existing market shares. Having a highly engaged airport workforce that is constantly looking for ways to provide best-in-class service as well as provide products and services that distinguishes an airport from another will allow the organization to remain competitive and profitable.

Organizations that recognize the value of their staff and are concerned about their employees overall well being tend to also have a more engaged workforce. Allowing staff to have access to training and educational programmes will allow them the opportunity to make a greater contribution. A training programme that is important to outline specific to airports is the Developing a Customer Service Culture at Airports. By increasing staff participation airports are building a customer centric organization.

Become an employer of choice

Finding and retaining qualified staff has become increasing difficult for airports, as they have to compete not only with other airports to keep their high performers but also with external industry stakeholders.. Airports are paying more attention to developing and implementing employee engagement programmes that provide incentives to staff, such as:

An organization with an engaged workforce who actively contribute to organizational goals, always includes investment in the welfare and advancement of staff.  An investment in employees is an investment in an organizations future success.

John Webster

John Webster

Senior Manager, Global Training, ACI World
John is a senior level aviation professional with over 25 years combined operational and strategic knowledge of the industry. He has a rich and diverse career that spans airports, airlines, international aviation trade associations as well as government institutions. He is currently responsible for the operational management and administration of quality training solutions in keeping with ACI's strategic vision and direction.
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