How to Know if You’ve Outgrown Your Airline’s In-House Catering Software
From their inception, all airlines face key decisions about how to manage the complexities of onboard services.
A robust, customizable technology stack is imperative to driving scale and efficiency onboard. However, systems comprehensive enough to cover an airline’s every need may not have been available when these investments were first chosen.
And so, the strategic decision is often made to develop a completely customized in-house technology platform. After all, as they say: if you want something done well, do it yourself.
But over time, many airlines have discovered that these homegrown systems often don’t age well. Here’s how to know if your airline has outgrown its in-house solution:
Bloated IT expenses are diverting focus and profits
Airlines that build their own tech systems later find they’ve unwittingly branched out into the world of software product management.
It’s one thing to build your own system; it’s entirely another to maintain it. For that, you need coders, QA, product managers, product owners, and business analysts. Then, there are the mounting hosting costs.
Suddenly the IT budget becomes heftier year after year. And every time further customizations are required, you must ‘crack open’ your own product, leading to even higher costs.
And each year as necessary improvements are avoided, more expensive technical debt accrues.
Meanwhile, ROI becomes harder to measure as costs increase against a system typically not designed to support the required cost analysis.
Operations have become less stable, not more
Even if a homegrown solution is 100% perfect at launch, the ‘do-it-yourself’ approach to something as critical as an airline’s technology system eventually creates a house of cards.
IT teams carry legacy IP that is not easy to transfer. When a critical team member leaves, institutional knowledge often walks out the door with them.
And if these systems fail, the ramifications often point inward with no financial coverage. Without a SaaS partner, airlines are on their own to put out these fires despite ever-tightening constraints.
Tech is slowing you down and holding you back
Boxed in by your own technology, it becomes impossible to rapidly rise to new challenges and strategies as the world and market evolve—or to compete with nimble airlines empowered by more flexible tech solutions.
The COVID-19 pandemic in particular has certainly heightened and illuminated the need for tech that enables rapid change, not hinders it.
The financial and logistical realities of in-house software can even turn exciting revenue opportunities into slow-moving projects that miss the boat entirely.
Over time, this can create a company culture that accepts the status quo instead of embracing innovation.
Some Food for Thought
For any airline, the flexibility of its technology systems can mean the difference between true scalability and stagnation. Today, airline catering technology is best left to scalable, flexible technology partners like Paxia, whose own success hinges upon yours.
Fortunately, it’s never too late to right the ship.
Even if the right SaaS partner didn’t exist when key technology decisions were made in years past, airlines can still quickly achieve efficiency, speed, and ROI by course-correcting now.