Have any of you been to the Brisbane Airport lately? It is a hive of hustle and bustle, like any other airport in a major city. People are focused solely on their next move and achieving it as soon as is humanly possible.`
What next move? Well for a start:
- Connecting flights
- Car hire
- Shuttle bus, that is supposed to be running on time
- Limo driver that should be waiting as you exit
- Air train that should be running on time
I have been to the Brisbane Airport recently and it is a *big place*. It strikes me that in order to ascertain information on any of the above examples you have to move to multiple places, see multiple people, and often wait in long, long lines for a long, long time.
In 2012 is this really good enough? Shouldn’t this information be available at our fingertips? I discussed most of us being armed to the teeth with technology in my last blog. Can’t we utilise this plethora of tech to minimize aching feat, headaches and frustration? Yeah, I think we can.
Enter the wiki.
The term “wiki” comes from the Hawaiian phrase, “wiki wiki,” which means “super fast.” That’s right, super fast, as in now, as in at your finger tips. Want to make commuters 1000 times happier? Make it easy for them to get the information they want, when they want it, with very little effort. How? Let everyone contribute, let the wiki evolve, let everyone concerned be a part of it.
Enter an airport specific wiki.
Imagine, you step off the plane, pull out your tablet and instantly know where you are going. Oh, Avis has actually run out of Rental cars? Ok, no problem, you head over to Hertz instead. Your connecting flight has been delayed? You head directly to the Qantas club for a well earned rest. The shuttle bus has broken down? But what about your connecting flight?! The worry dissipates as you finish reading the sentence explaining that the airport has booked cabs for affected commuters to get to the international terminal on time. That it is simply a matter of showing your boarding pass to the cab drivers in region A.
Knowledge is power, and happy commuters are commuters that feel empowered, not commuters that are stumbling around in an unfamiliar abyss trying to find their bearings.
The above information could be available on any tablet or smartphone with different clickable areas, completely free of charge by utilizing airport wi-fi. However, what if the information is not up to date? What if the information is inaccurate? Could this be worse than not having it at all? Most certainly, absolutely, unquestionably yes. Then you would have this sort of situation, which is in this day and age, for a respectable enterprise, simply not an option – not if you want to retain users.
So, they are going to need to do it right, the first time. If Brisbane Airport considered the benefits a wiki like this could provide there would be ample motivation to keep it up-to-the-second accurate.
- Far less ‘information’ personnel required to be wandering the airport
- People would be more likely to spend money at the airport because they would be in better moods because they feel empowered.
- It’s free advertising – providing this information electronically means room for well placed, tasteful advertisements or ‘deals’ for consumers.
- Airports could charge their many subsidiaries to place ads that would attract custom within the wiki
- Running like clockwork – less confusion, less delays, faster movement? Could this open the door to more flights being available? The airport would effectively be streamlining its operation.
The balancing act
This is one of those ideas that is going to be either ultra successful, or fail miserably depending on the way the implementation strategy is handled. In the beginning, it should be all for the consumers (customers), information just because Brisbane Airport cares.
The National Federation of Independent Business warns that if you push too soon for gains that will eventually come from introducing new innovation the following occurs:
- You start choosing quantity over quality
- Your clients (commuters) feel undeserved
- Your vendors and partners feel overwhelmed and under appreciated
Balance, Balance, Balance!
Make the change first because it is a good idea that will actually benefit commuters. Realise benefits will come in time, and appreciate as with most social media these benefits can be cascading and take time to emerge as discussed in my previous blog about enterprise 2.0 ROI.
So, tell me readers… would you appreciate a wiki like this being available? How long do you think something like this would have to be successfully operational before advertisements or special offers could be introduced?
I look forward to your comments!