Thursday, 17 April 2014
Written by Benet Wilson
Benet Wilson talks to a handful of airports that have used ACI’s Airport Service Quality survey to enhance the passenger experience and strengthen their brand.
Jacksonville International Airport
Florida’s Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) has ranked fifth of all North American airports in ACI’s annual customer satisfaction survey for the last
two years. It was also fifth among airports worldwide serving 5-15 million passengers in 2008 and 2009.
The airport uses customer feedback, including data from the ASQ survey, internal comment forms, social media, and face-to-face customer interaction, to improve the passenger experience, says Bryan Long, Jacksonville’s customer service manager.
Airport improvements include: creating a standardised customer service training initiative for all employees; upgrading bathrooms; offering improved flight, gate, and baggage information screens; providing free Wi-Fi; delivering more food and beverage offerings for longer hours; creating a ‘Preferred Traveller’ lane at the security checkpoint; and building improved signage.
Long also credited its Volunteer Airport Ambassadors, 55 people from all walks of life who donated nearly 10,000 hours of their time in 2013 to help customers.
“We would not have the great reputation for customer service without our ambassadors,” he smiles. “Also, the leadership and hard work of the entire Jacksonville Aviation Authority staff is the foundation which makes us one of the best airports in the world. The success of all depends on each team member.”
The idea of ranking is central to the nature of competitive spirit, says Long. “But being ranked the best for a given period of time, is not as important as steady improvement over time. The goal should always be consistent improvement in each area,” he states.
“The ASQ programme helps us plan both short and long-term goals designed to improve the quality of our delivery and enhance the brand, making JAX a desired location to fly to. Awards will come and go, but the goal is consistent, relentless improvement.”
Jacksonville is about always striving for higher satisfaction, says Long. “Where we do use the awards are when we work with our airline partners to grow new services or get more seats,” he reveals.
“The awards are also useful for our regional economic development teams who are bringing new businesses to the area. The quality of air service plays a big factor when companies are scouting for locations.”