London Gatwick Airport has signed a contract with Getronics for staffing services for a broad range of IT projects across the airport.
Under the four-year contract, Getronics will provide staff to fill 21 ICT roles, from service management to senior business analysts.
“To keep up with technology, this gives us the flexibility we need,” said Michael Ibbitson, CIO at London Gatwick Airport.
“Twenty-one people might represent 21 skills, but we might need 40 different skills. [With this contract] we can exchange people in and out of the Gatwick environment. We leverage their [Getronic’s] economies of scale.”
The airport is about to embark on the refurbishment of its North Terminal, which has 14 main IT systems. With the renovation, it hopes to implement new ones such as queue timing and boarding pass recognition systems, which are just some of the projects that the Getronics-provided staff will work on.
The contract was signed in January, and the first staff started working at the airport in February.
Gatwick has been working with Getronics for the past year and a half, on application management projects. It is also helping the airport with testing and the application integration layer for the new airport-wide collaboration system from Amadeus, that it is hoping to go live on 17 June.
“That’s part of the ACDM [Airport Collaborative Decision-Making] toolset to allow us, airlines and teams on the ground to collaborate,” said Ibbitson.
The system will provide all airport stakeholders with access to real-time and accurate data to help Gatwick run a more efficient airfield, which means more planes landing, according to Ibbitson. Previously, operational airport data was stored in legacy systems and desktop PCs inherited from former Gatwick Airport owner BAA.
He said: “When we started the project, we were doing 48 movements [the term used to described each takeoff and landing] an hour, which already was the most efficient runway in the world. Now, it’s 55 an hour, and we hope to get to 58 next year.”
Gatwick Airport has been ramping up its IT investment in recent months, particularly through the use of cloud-based systems.
For example, Gatwick said it was going to become the first airport to move its central operational database to cloud as part of wider plans to consolidate its data centre estate and it is also seeking a supplier to provide it with a software-as-a-service identity management system.
Elsewhere, it has also given its 2,500 employees access to Box – a cloud-based collaboration tool – in a bit to strengthen employee productivity.
In February, Gatwick Airport announced plans to create a management system for passengers travelling through the airport, with the aim of better understanding customer behaviour and identifying new opportunities for growth.